Knock is a village in Ireland, which is a place of pilgrimage for Catholics, comparable with Lourdes in France and Fatima in Portugal. The Virgin Mary is said to have appeared here in 1879. Every year, Knock is visited by about one and a half million pilgrims. Exactly one hundred years after the appearance, in 1979, Pope John Paul II also visited this holy place.
The village has only 800 inhabitants.
Knock is located in County Mayo in the northwest of Ireland, a beautiful, rough area with steep cliffs at for example Croaghaun and Benwee Head.
Obviously the economy of this town is entirely based on religious tourism. Along the route from the village to the sanctuary there are many shops, markets and stalls selling only religious relics. In the north of County Mayo renewable energy is generated; not only wind energy, but people are also experimenting with energy from waves and tidal movements.
Ireland West Airport is situated 22 kilometers northeast of Knock. It's easily reachable by rental car via the N17. The exit to the airport is clearly signposted.
There's a bus connection with Charlestown, where you need to change to reach other destinations in Ireland by bus. The nearest train station is in Ballyhaunis, 22 kilometers east of Knock.
Although Knock can be quite busy (especially in summer months) you can easily park your rental car. The village is equipped to receive no less than one and a half million pilgrims a year.
Many pilgrims visit Knock on a day trip and don't stay overnight. There's only one accommodation, the Knock House Hotel. There's a campsite near the village, but for a larger choice of accommodations you need to turn to villages nearby, like Kiltimagh, Swinford and Claremorris.
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