1. It's inspired by Irish folklore
It is said that Halloween is a time of transition, when light becomes dark, the veil between our world and the next comes down and rules can be broken. This is when the Púca comes to life. A púca is a mysterious creature from Ireland's folklore who can change the fortunes of anyone who meets it. It is this spirit of unpredictable energy that inspires the annual Púca Halloween Festival, which takes place in counties Meath and Louth in Ireland's Ancient East.
2. It takes place in historic locations
The Púca Festival takes place in some of the island of Ireland's most celebrated sites: the Hill of Ward in County Meath, where druids once performed their sacred ceremonies; the ruins of nearby Trim Castle, Ireland's largest Anglo-Norman fortress; the village of Slane on the banks of the mystical River Boyne; and the streets of Drogheda in County Louth, one of the island's oldest towns. From 23 to 31 October, old collides with new as dazzling light shows, musical events and playful interactive experiences are staged in these historic venues.
3. It's in Ireland – the home of Halloween
The Hill of Ward (Tlachtga) in County Meath was one of the earliest sites to host the festival of Samhain, which celebrated the end of the harvest and the beginning of winter. At this sacred place, the Celts extinguished the old year’s flames and lit the ceremonial fire to welcome in the new season.
4. It's got an amazing line-up of events
Well, it IS Halloween in Ireland, so you should be prepared for anything. Even the sight of ghostly entities telling ancient stories, spooky illuminations lighting the night sky or magical creatures appearing before you as you wander around these ancient places. Púca features a range of exciting events including interactive light shows, innovative storytelling performances, as well as a soundtrack that includes everything from chamber music to electronica, performed by talented musicians in venues around Drogheda, Slane and Trim.
5. And the food is great!
The Boyne Valley has become a hub in Ireland's flourishing artisan food scene. And as the Púca Festival is based in Drogheda, Slane, Trim and Athboy, it offers the perfect opportunity to sample the craft beers, farmhouse cheeses and locally produced charcuterie that have helped the region make its mark in the culinary world. Of course, while you're here, you must try out some of Ireland's favourite Halloween recipes, such as barm brack (fruit cake) and colcannon (mashed potato, cabbage and lashings of butter). These foods often contain items that can foretell your future such as a ring (married in a year) or a coin (wealth) so chew with caution!