Ireland has a very rich history, and its well-preserved archaeological sites are one way of seeing first-hand how it evolved from its ancient Celtic societies to the industrial nation that it is today. Some of the major archaeological sites are often included in commercial tours, but another way to explore them would be to hire a car at any of the numerous car hire agencies located in major airports and cities. Not only does this allow you to explore the lesser-known destinations at your own pace, it spares you from the often expensive rates that are charged by commercial tours. If you do decide to travel through Ireland by car, ask your car hire agency to help you plan your car trip in such a way that you can visit the Loughcrew Cairns, sometimes known as the Hills of the Witch. This is a group of Neolithic passage tombs which were built around 3000BC. They can be found on three different hills, with the largest tomb—Cairn T—nestled within Carnbane East. Cairn T is inside a cruciform chamber that has a corbelled roof, its walls lined with some of the best examples of Neolithic art in Ireland. It is a particularly popular car travel destination during the Vernal and Autumnal Equinox, where large crowds gather at its entrance to watch the sunlight enter the chamber, slowly illuminating the inside of the tomb. Cairl L, the tomb located in Cairnbane West, is also renowned for its Stone Age cairns, and its breathtaking views of the surrounding landscape. Visitors can get the key to this tomb from the guides. The Loughcrew Cairns is easily accessible by car travel. Take a car drive down County Meath, traveling 3 k m east of Oldcastle, off R163. It is a 80 km car drive North-West of Dublin, from which you can rent a car at the many car hire agencies located there. You can also find car hire agencies within airports or major cities.
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