On the days around the Winter Solstice when the skies are clear the rising sun illuminates the passage and chamber
of the 5000 year old megalithic passage tomb at Newgrange in the Boyne Valley.
Conditions were perfect on Friday 19th December for a magnificent solstice
morning at Newgrange.
The rising sun at Newgrange.
Solstice Sunbeam in the Newgrange passage.
The white quartz glows in the sunlight at Newgrange.
A perfect sunrise to illuminate the passage and chamber at Newgrange.
The solstice lottery winners were experiencing a wonderful sunrise in the
Newgrange chamber while the people outside waited patiently for their turn to
enter the chamber.
The sunbeam retreating from the passage at Newgrange.
5000 year old solar alignment
Above the entrance to Newgrange there is a opening called a roof-box.
On mornings around the winter solstice a beam of light penetrates the roof-box and travels up
the 19 metre passage and into the chamber. As the sun rises higher, the beam widens so that the
whole chamber is dramatically illuminated.
Access to the chamber on the Solstice mornings is decided by a
lottery that takes place at the
end of September each year. All are welcome to gather outside the entrance to the Newgrange
mound on each of the mornings from December 18th to December 23rd inclusive, sunrise is at 8.58am.