Kilfenora is located in the north- west of County Clare. The village is has a long established tradition of music.The Kilfenora Ceili band, the most famous céilí band in Ireland come from Kilfenora. The village and its surrounding has a lot to offer, the Burren Interpretative Centre, rare Ring Forts, Holywells, Castles, a 200 acre lake for trout fishing and boating, craft work, choice accommodation, good food, friendly people, dancing, fun and music sessions.
It is regarded as the gateway to the famous Burren region and the village is steeped in history and culture. The Burren Centre which is based in Kilfenora is a local enterprise intent on educating the visitor about local flora, fauna, geology and the local customs of life. The history of Kilfenora can be established over thousands of years. St Fachtna established an abbey here in the 6th century.
Kilfenora then gained the title of “City of the Crosses” as a result of the high crosses located within or near the cathedral. They date back to the 9th and 10th century and are beautifully carved. Many visitors base themselves in Kilfenora especially those who wish to take advantage of the fishing opportunities present there. There are numerous lakes such as Likeen Lake and Lough Lake which have stocks of rainbow and brown trout. There are also numerous lively pubs specializing in Irish music and set dancing. Many Irish crafts and souvenirs can be bought in the local shops.
The Kilfenora Ceili Band is one of Ireland's most famous ceili bands. A group of musicians had come together in 1907 with the intention of raising funds for the local church and to play at local houses or cross road dances. They went on to become a household name in Ireland and beyond. The members of the band changed over the years but their special brand of traditional dance music was extremely popular. The 1950s was the golden era of ceili dancing in Ireland. In the 1960s the band played regularly in England. Huge crowds turned out to hear them. They won three All-Ireland Fleadh Cheoil titles in a row. In July 1992 the local population gathered to pay tribute to the Kilfenora Ceili Band as they celebrated 85 years in existence. The event was broadcast live on RTE radio. The great tradition of bands in the parish stretches back to the 1800s with fife and drum, brass and reed and ceili bands all having their glory years.
For further information check out www.burrenconnect.ie / www.kilfenoraclare.com.