Baile Fhobhair - "Townland of the spring"
The Valley of Fore, North Westmeath
The award winning St Fechin's Trail is a 3k looped walk that brings visitors through thousands of years of early Christian Heritage. The handsome ruins of a Norman Monastery stand on the site that once held one of
the most important monastic communities in Europe. Fore was a bright light during the dark ages, a place of welcome, learning, worship and innovation.
The still beautiful valley of Fore still has an enchanting quality and its easy to imagine what encouraged generation after generation to found places of worship in this special place. A small mausoleum is all that remains of the ascetic practice of anchorites, locking themselves away from the world and imposing a desert on themselves when they could find noe in the abundant Irish landscape. The stories of Fechin are all that remain of the Saint that chose Fore for his community in the 7th Century.
We also celebrate friendship in Fore by calling a small part of St Fechin's Trail Nancy to Nelly, celebrating the friendship of two lovely women who from they were children used this woodland path to run between each others homes. As part of North Westmeath Creative Tourism's work, one of our artists, Teresa Doyle, painted Nancy and Nelly into their homes. Too often we only remember our Saints and Warriors - so it is nice in Fore that we remember the ordinary men and women of our past that were also important people in their own stories. Between Nancy and Nelly we also celebrate the imagination of our children and the culture of our 'little people'.
There are three places to rest and refresh in Fore. Jane's Coffee Shop, The Abbey Bar and Lounge, which has a tiny shop and the Seven Wonders Bar. The Parish of Collinstown and Fore often celebrate important events at St Fechin's Church and they post their schedules on their Facebook Page.
Information For Visitors
Opening Times, Fees & Admission Policies
Fore is open throughout the year and admission is free.
- Car & coach parking
- Tourist Information Office
- Marked walking trails
- Picnic area
- Toilet facilities
- Fore Abbey Coffee Shop is open daily from June - September
Tours & Trails
- A 3km looped walk ("St Fechin's Way") begins at the car park. Pick up your copy of the Fore Visitor's Guide from the Coffee Shop and follow the trail at your own pace.
- Bartle D'Arcy is a registered tour guide based in Fore. He has an in depth knowledge of Irish History and is an accomplished story teller. Learn more...
Find out what other visitors had to say about Fore.
There is a lovely 3.5km walk from the abbey ruins, taking you past woodland and fields and which brings you back to the village.
Jane's Tea Room is worth a visit for homemade cakes and great chat. She is a mine of local history.
Lovely pint of Guinness to be had in the Seven Wonders Bar. Called in after a Ghost Walk at Halloween. Very cosy and friendly little place.
Treat yourself to a slice of homemade apple pie and a cup of tea in the coffee shop after your walk.
How To Get Here
Fore is 79 minutes from Dublin, 28 minutes from Mullingar and 6 minutes from Castlepollard.
Car Park Coordinates