One of the most powerful gifts that An Ghealach gives to Ireland is that it allows us to see the land that we love so much in a literal new light. As the Emerald Isle we are so defined by our lush green landscapes – which I am of course always enamoured by – but sometimes it’s refreshing to be reminded that there’s a different side to Ireland, one that is just waiting for the moonlight to bring it to life.
An Ireland basking in the light of an ghealach is the Ireland of folklore, myths and legends; where faeries could be twirling through the dewy grasses, spirits could be ascending through our skies and magic is dancing just beyond our fingertips.
It’s just so wonderful to see the different sights of Ireland under the moon’s perspective. As well as appreciating the view directly in front of you it makes you think of the planets and galaxies beyond our own – an experience that is simultaneously humbling and empowering.
Below are some examples of Ireland as it appears by the light of the moon, each with its own individual charm, as they piece together part of the awe-inspiring puzzle that is an ghealach.
Don’t you just love catching a daytime view of the moon out of the blue (literally)? The reason for this photogenic phenomenon is that our silvery satellite is in just the right place in to reflect enough light from the sun and appear brighter than the sky around it.
Despite the science, the result always fills me with a sense of whimsy – as though something magical is about to happen. The swans in the forefront of this beautiful image taken by @OnYourDoorSteph in Fermanagh enhance the moons mystic qualities – calling to mind the beautiful story of the Children of Lir, and nodding to An Ghealach’s place in the imagery of Irish Folklore.