Exploring The Burren is one of a series of illustrated guides published in association with the National Museum of Ireland.
The Burren, which covers large tracts of County Clare and parts of County Galway and has an outpost in the Aran Islands, is a magical landscape of limestone pavements, underground waterways and cave systems. It is remarkable for its extraordinary flora, with alpine, arctic and Mediterranean species mysteriously surviving side by side in a most unlikely habitat. Inhabited since earliest times, the Burren’s landscape has been shaped by human activity almost as much as by natural forces, and is among the most archaeologically intact areas of Europe.
Exploring the Burren covers the geology, archaeology and ecology of this extraordinary natural wonderland. It examines the cultural landscape – the influence of human habitation, history and farming practices on the area – as well as taking a look at the natural history of the land and its flora and fauna. The Burren’s role as a source of inspiration for writers and artists is traced and the book concludes with a short gazetteer of information centres and attractions which both the casual visitor and the more dedicated devotee of the Burren will find most useful.
George Cunningham is the author of three Burren guides and books on archaeology and history. He brings his passionate interest in the Burren, together with a wealth of knowledge in a variety of fields-archaeology, history, landscape and flora and fauna-to this book.