Scrabo Tower majestically stands 125 feet high on a hill 540 feet above sea level and is one of Northern Ireland’s most famous landmarks. This site was originally the location of a great megalithic cairn, then it was used for tribal gatherings and  later again part of an estate belonging to a Dominican Monastery. The word ‘Scrabo’ means ‘cow pasture’ in Irish which would suggest this fertile area has always been farmed. The tower was built in 1857 as a memorial to Charles Stewart, 3rd Marquess of Londonderry for his efforts to alleviate suffering during the Great Famine (which wasn’t too common for a landlord during these times) so his tenants led to a communal effort to erect a monument in his memory. It was built to designs attributed to the famous architect Sir Charles Lanyon after a controversial competition for the tender. Stewart was one of the Duke of Wellington’s generals during the Napoleonic Wars and was known as “Warring Charlie” and inherited his title after his brother (the 2nd Marquis) committed suicide. It now stands in a golf course and is surrounded by a beautiful country park. The tower is now open to the public and houses two floors of displays. The 122 steps to the top is worth the effort for the stunning views.

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