Dundrum Castle is located in a spectacular setting overlooking Dundrum Bay and the mighty Mourne Mountains. A motte and bailey castle was built here on the site of an earlier ring fort by John de Courcy sometime around 1172 following his invasion of Ulster. De Courcy was a ‘renegade’ Norman knight who traveled north after Strongbow’s invasion of Ireland in 1169 and managed to carve himself his own personal Kingdom for 30 years until he was eventually expelled by Hugh de Lacy in 1203. Hugh de Lacy strengthened the castle with the massive 3 floored round keep which can still be see within the grounds. It remained in Crown control for many centuries but was later taken and bought by numerous powerful families over it’s turbulent history. These families included The Magennis family of Mourne, The Earl of Kildare, Lord Deputy Grey, Lord Mountjoy, Lord Cromwell, Francis Blundell, The Magennis family (again), The Parliamentarians (who dismantled the castle in 1652), The Blundells (again!) and eventually to the Marquess of Downshire before becoming a State Care Historical Monument. The archaeological television programme ‘Time Team’ made a documentary on this very interesting site.

Curious Ireland images make interesting wall art, meaningful wedding presents or simply a thoughtful gift for someone who is living far away…….If you prefer COLOUR CLICK HERE or B&W CLICK HERE. (beautifully printed & packaged by the Irish Photo Archive)

If you are planning to explore this area CLICK HERE for the best available deals for nearby hotels, hostels, B&B’s and castles.