Finian’s Dream has been a destination that’s been on our list since the region officially opened; in fact it is one that has given rise to a few recommendations coming my way in the time since (thank you Miro, et al), with the only reason for a delay in dropping in is to allow the initial rush of visitors to be over, so we can creep around and peek at things without getting in the way of others too much.
Designed by Noralie78 of Lost Unicorn Forest fame (read here for more), the region’s description is perfectly offered by her through an introductory note card that can be obtained at the landing point:
Welcome to Finian’s Dream! This beautiful land is in celebration of old Celtic Ireland with a touch of magic 🙂 Ireland is known for its many mystical secrets of the forest…after all, that’s where fairies came from! Walk through the deep and magical woods, you might just make some discoveries along the way. Stop by the pub and allow Donngal to make you a drink while you watch Rowan perform her Irish dance (no she never gets tired :P).
This is a place that harks back to a time when Ireland’s many forests were united to cover much of the land; a place where Ireland’s legends and myths may well have been born. wreathed in mist and caught in a perpetual dusk. In this realm, awaiting discovery, is so much.
From the landing point, the forest, deep in shadow beckons; a place where tiny fairies flit and fly. Statues and glades with stone circles, the air within them cut by slanting Moonlight, await along natural trails a paths set wide between broad tree trunks that hold aloft the covering blanket of branches and leaves.
A stream cuts through the forest with logs, either fallen or felled, providing crossing points over it, pointing the way to where a rutted cart track skirts the woodlands. Follow this in one direction, and it leads the way to where stone steps climb the region’s uplands, in the other it offers the way to open farmlands presided over a homely cottage and a lone windmill. Here the land is cut neatly by dry stone walls, home to sheep and cattle.
Above the farm and the canopy of trees, the highlands form a stepped plateau, home to a stone castle that commands the land and those surrounding it. The Irish tricolour hangs above the castle’s portcullis, casting a more recent time to the setting (the flag was a gift to Ireland in 1848, but not officially adopted until the early 20th century), which makes it a slight anachronism given the sense of age and history invoked by the rest of the region.
Within the castle can be found a marvellous display of CybeleMoon’s fabulous digital art, which is keeping with the setting, echoing as it does the rich sense of history and legend evoked by the design. Also to be found with the region are three story givers that relate famous Irish legends as narrated by SL resident Sukibombuki Resident.
With the heavy mists, the hidden farm beyond the woods, the cottage in the forest and the twilight sky, its not hard to imagine this is some form of Irish Brigadoon – a place cut off from the rest of the world, filled with its own mystery that, rather than appearing once a century, can only be found by wandering deep into the older IrishfForests and following the path that brings you to this mystical, magical place.
Beautifully conceived and executed, Finian’s Dream is a place that is gorgeous to witness, lovingly put together by the hands and eyes that make Lost Unicorn such a joy to visit.
- Finian’s Dream (Celtic Mist, rated Moderate)