Bardsey Island: Merlin’s home, location of his glass tower, and numerous shennanigans. Belongs, technically, to Wales.
I hope you’ll forgive a little geekiness on my part here. This is one of my bucket-list places that I want to see before I die.
Reasons why this place is cool:
- Called “the isle of 20,000 saints;” Celts chose it as a place to pray and die. Legend in the European Middle Ages claimed anyone buried there would not go to Hell. The Pope even declared three pilgrimages to Bardsey Island equal to a pilgrimage to Rome.
- It’s filled with utterly unique plants, including the amazing Merlin’s Apple, which is resistant to disease. Supposedly, the numerous saints buried there have given it strength via… bonemeal? (I read it online, so it must be true.)
- It really IS the supposed resting place of Merlin. It’s even been considered a possibility for Avalon. Some legends even say King Arthur is buried there, though most “scholarly” views say otherwise.
- There’s a tiny weird cave (NOT the same as the one in Cornwall, obviously), though there aren’t many photos of it.
- The Welsh name is Ynys Enlli (inn-is en-lee, I think), which means “Isle of the Currents.” Apparently, the currents around the island can be very strong.
- The Wikipedia article has a lot of this stuff… but not everything.
It’s a gorgeous location, and definitely on my bucket list. Check out this truly stunning Flickr group to get an idea of just how lovely it is. In the world of the Mythos, Merlin chose to live on that island centuries before the Christian missionaries came, and the only time he wasn’t in full residence was when Arthur reigned.