Most visitors to Ireland see Dublin, Blarney/Cork, Galway, and maybe Dingle. But if you venture off the beaten path, Co. Meath has a lot to offer. It’s not that far, just the next county over from Dublin. A much shorter trip than Blarney whether you take the bus or drive.
Co. Meath is nicknamed the Royal County because it was the seat of the high kings. Inhabited since before the pyramids, you can view key spots in Irish history all over the area. To start, Newgrange is Ireland’s Stonehenge and much more interesting. A must see. Just a few miles away is the Hill of Tara. This hill is where the kings on Leinster and, for a time, the kings of Ireland ruled from. On a clear day, you’re supposed to be able to see every county in Ireland. It’s not even that tall. Just a perfect location to see approaching attacks because of the sight-lines. Bonus, it’s super close to the new motorway from Dublin. The Hill of Tara is also important because it’s believed that this is where St. Patrick began his conversions. In the 19th century, Daniel O’Connell spoke to thousands of Irish people to repeal the Act of Union (the act that created the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland).
The Hill of Skreen is nearby. This spot has a church dedicated to St. Columba. He’s thought to be the commissioner of the Book of Kells. He had monasteries in Leinster and in Scotland. It is thought that the book was started in Iona, Scotland and made its way to Kells during the Viking invasions.
There are also many medieval locations to check out like Mellifont Abbey or Trim Castle. I think this county has more places of interest scattered about than any other county in Ireland.