Skip to content

Heritage Ireland

Aghagower Round Tower and Church

A monastery located on an important pilgrimage route

Unguided sites

Aghagower
Mayo

Access available during daylight hours

Aghagower Round Tower and Church

A monastery located on an important pilgrimage route

Unguided sites

Aghagower
Mayo

Access available during daylight hours

Facilities

  • Car park

Notice

Aghagower Round Tower & Church is a state-owned free National Monument in the care of the Office of Public Works

Aghagower Round Tower and Church

Aghagower or Achadh Fhobhair ‘Field of the Springs’ was the first monastery founded in Aghagower. It was founded by St Senach, who was said to who have been then made Bishop of Aghagower by St Patrick in the 5th century. The location was strategic, mid-way along an ancient routeway which, in the medieval period, evolved into the Togher Patrick, an important pilgrimage route between Ballintober and Croagh Patrick.

Aghagower became a principal stopping point on the route, and this greatly aided the monastery in becoming one of the notable ecclesiastical centres in Mayo. It was flourishing in late 11th or 12th century when it had the resources to construct the round tower.  The round tower is preserved up to the fourth floor, and has a round-headed doorway. The present ground-floor entrance is modern, and the roof is said to have been struck by lightning in the past.

The ruined church that now stand in the graveyard is late medieval in date, but incorporates a number of earlier features. It consists of a rectangular building constructed of mortared limestone, with a few sandstone blocks. This would suggest that it may have been built on or close to the site of an earlier church, the fragments of which still remain on the grounds.

 Protect our Past - Click here to read about the importance of protecting our country’s unique heritage sites

This national monument is protected in accordance with the National Monuments Acts 1930 to 2014

Nearby sites to visit

Staffed sites

Unguided sites

Heritage Card

Unlimited access to Ireland’s past

Buy one today

Join our mailing list

Subscribe

Keep up to date on our news, events, activities and publications.