Galbally is one of Ireland's most picturesque
villages situated in the majestic Glen of Aherlow and just nine miles from
Tipperary Town. The village won the overall National Tidy Towns Award in 1994.
Galbally is an ideal location for a wide variety of activities. It has indoor
facilities for badminton and handball, outdoor tennis and basketball and a
number of sports fields for rugby, soccer and Gaelic games. Galbally is also an
ideal base for hill walking and guided or mapped walks can be arranged.
During the 9th century, the Vikings had established strongholds
in Ireland. A village called Cu was located near Galbally in County
Limerick and the Cussen surname may be linked to the early Vikings.
Galbally (An Gallbhaile) in Irish, means "Townland of the foreigners."
Although most of the Vikings were from Norway, some who were from Denmark, and
they settled near Limerick in the 9th century. The Gaelic term for the
Danes was "Dubh-gall" or dark foreigner, and the term for the
Norwegians was "Finn-gall" or fair foreigner.
The Normans were Vikings who established
settlements in France during the late 9th century. The consistent attacks
on the Franks in 888 provided opportunities for new settlements in what
later became known as Normandy. The medieval Latin name for Viking
is "Northmannus" and the name for Normandy is "Northmannia"
William the Conqueror (a Norman duke)
defeated the Anglo-Saxon forces at the Battle of Hastings in 1066 and assumed
the English throne. The Norman invasion of Ireland started in 1169
and within the next century, they controlled 75% of the country. The
majority of Irish towns were established by the Normans who spoke
Norman-French. The province of Munster became one of the most predominant
French (Norman) settlements outside of France. Galbally is located within
Fishermen are also well catered for. Near the
village is Hillcrest Riding Centre where treks through the surrounding
countryside can be availed of. There are also a number of excellent golf courses
within easy reach of the village. Galbally offers a wide range of accommodation from hotels to B&Bs to self catering thatched houses. Those interested in
geology or archaeology will find Glencliff Gorge, just north of the village, of
great interest. It was created by a glacial overspill and melt waters torrent
from a pre-glacial lake.
Darbys Bed is an ancient site from which much fable and
folklore abound. It is a majestic passage grave dating back almost 4000 years
and legend has it Diarmuid and Grainne rested here on their flight from the
angry Fionn MacCumhaill. The graveyard contains the ruin of a 13th century
church. Moorabbey on the road to the Glen of Aherlow was a Franciscan Abbey
built in 1204. The pass through the glen was an important route to
Tipperary. Three of its friars were martyred there in 1570 and the
story goes that on being beheaded no blood flowed from their necks. There is a
tourist information office open during the summer season. Galbally is an ideal
place to spend a relaxing holiday and is also a great base from which to visit
other areas of interest as it is just 24 miles from Limerick City and less than
50 miles from Cork. The population was 246 from the 1996 census.
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