Glendalough, the valley of the two lakes, is renowned for its Early Medieval monsastic settlement founded by St. Kevin in the 6th century. This monastery was to become one of Ireland's most notable centers of learning. The buildings which survive date from between the 10th and 12th centuries.

There are many legends regarding St. Kevin. One claims that while sitting in a tree one day, a blackbird came to sit in his hand. The bird laid an egg there and Kevin took this as a sign from God and remained until the egg hatched and the bird flew away.