Ruined Castles

One of the best preserved and much over-looked medieval towns in Ireland

Clonmines, Bannow Bay. County Wexford        14th - 16th centuries Clonmines probably began it's life as a Norman settlement established by William Marshall in the 13th century as an alternative port to New [...]

Carlow’s richest family, The IRA & Banshees

Duckett’s Grove, Rainstown. County Carlow           1850 This great house was built between 1818 -1850 and was once home to the Duckett family. The Ducketts were Carlow's largest landowners for 300 years with an estate covering [...]

A Norman castle, The Nugents & An ancient trading route

Delvin Castle is located in the middle of Delvin village in county Westmeath. This was once a sturdy Norman castle with a square block in the middle and 4 corner cylindrical towers. It was built in 1310 [...]

A castle under constant attack, The Red Earl & A dodgy location!

Ballinafad Castle is located in Ballinafad in county Sligo. It was built in 1590 and is also known as the 'Castle of the Curlews'. It has had a turbulent history due to it's strategic (or [...]

Battle of the Boyne, Spectre’s, dying soldiers & blood covered hands

This foreboding looking building is Athcarne Castle located in Balrath co. Meath.  It was built for William Bathe in 1590. The Bathe family produced a number of well known legal and political personalities around the [...]

A magnificent castle built by a renegade Norman & the Time Team

Dundrum Castle, Dundrum, County Down          c. 1200 Dundrum Castle is located in a spectacular setting overlooking Dundrum Bay and the mighty Mourne Mountains. This ancient hilltop site was chosen by John de Courcy sometime around [...]

Once regarded as one of Dublin’s finest residences

Monkstown Castle is located in Monkstown in south co.Dublin. The first castle here was built on a large farm by the Cistercian Monks of St Mary’s Abbey between the 14th and 15th centuries. This area [...]

One of the best preserved Scottish styled plantation castles in Northern Ireland

Monea Castle, Monea. County Fermanagh        1618 The Plantation of Ulster in the early 17th Century was an attempt by the English monarchy to take control of the troublesome province of Ulster. After attempts by Queen [...]

A bloody history on the night before Christmas

Tully Castle, Derrygonnelly. County Fermanagh     1612 Tully Castle is a fortified tower house with 4 rectangular corner towers and is located on a beautiful location on the shores of Upper Lough Erne. It was built [...]

The last original wooden roof of a castle to survive in Ireland

 Dunsoghly Castle, St Margarets, County Dublin     15th century Dunsoglhy Castle is located on private land at the very end of the runway of Dublin Airport. It is one of the few 15th century fortified tower [...]

An Arch-Bishop’s luxury pad, An orchard and The Tudors

Swords Castle is located in the town of Swords in north county Dublin and dates from 1190 a.d. In 1181 John Comyn succeeded Laurence O'Toole as the 1st Anglo-Norman Archbishop of Dublin and it appears [...]

One of the most striking Anglo-Norman castles in Ireland but don’t look out the window

Castle Roche, Dundalk. County Louth           1236 Castle Roche is one of the most striking Anglo-Norman castles in Ireland. It was built in 1236 by the De Verdun family and the steep rocky outcrop along with [...]

One of Ireland’s finest keeps with a turbulent history

Nenagh Castleis located in Nenagh in co.Tipperary. It was built c.1216 and was the main castle of the Butler family for 200 years before they moved to Gowran in co.Kilkenny. The family later splashed out [...]

The Athens of Ireland

The Rock of Dunamase, Dunamase. County Laois    c. 1170   The Rock of Dunamase is one of Ireland's most impressive locations for a castle as it sits on a limestone outcrop 150 feet above the [...]

A key ancient site, A holy well and St Patrick

Dunseverick Castle, Dunseverick. County Antrim         c. 1500 This location was a 'key' site in ancient Ireland as this was the end point where one of the Royal roads from Tara ended. There is also a [...]

A perfect hideaway to plan revolts, The O’Dohertys & Ancient rock art

Carrickabraghy Castle, Doagh Island. County Donegal       c. 1550 Carrickabraghy Castle is located in one of the wildest and most northerly locations in Ireland. This was just one in a network of castles built to defend [...]

Once one of Ireland’s most impressive Norman castles

Northburg Castle, Greencastle. County Donegal     1305 Northburg Castle is locally known as 'Greencastle' and was one of the most impressive Norman castles built in Ireland. It was built by Richard de Burgh: The Red Earl [...]

A Norman castle with stunning views over Carlingford Lough

King John's Castle is located in Carlingford in county Louth. This national monument was allegedly built for King John of England in 1200 however recent research suggests that it may have been built by the [...]

Once a prosperous trading port with 5 Royal charters & The Earls of Carlingford

Taaffe's Castle is situated in the beautiful medieval town of Carlingford. It was built around 1520 as a fortified townhouse and a trading depot for the Taaffe family. The Taaffe's later became the 'Earls of [...]

One of Northern Ireland’s most iconic buildings, Secret tunnels & Led Zeppelin

Dunluce Castle, Bushmills. County Antrim       c. 14th – 17th century a. d. This is one of Northern Ireland’s most iconic castles and its image is used extensively to market Northern Ireland as a holiday destination. [...]

One of the finest Norman castles in Ireland blown up by a physician

Carlow Castle in located in Carlow Town. This was one of the finest Norman castles ever built in Ireland. It was built around 1213 by William Marshall and the site was carefully chosen because of it's [...]

Rebellion, The O’Doherty’s & The Flight of the Earls

Burt Castle, Burt. County Donegal           1560 Burt Castle is one of the most recognizable castles in Donegal being located on a small hill overlooking Lough Swilly which would have originally been a small island surrounded [...]

A castle with an unusual design, The O’Neill’s & Harry Avery

Harry Avery's Castle, Newtownstewart. County Tyrone         c. 1320 This State Care Monument is named after Harry Avery O'Neill, a 14th century local chieftain. The structure is considered unusual because Gaelic chieftains of the time rarely [...]

On the border of The Pale, A forgotten castle & Strange spectres

Kilgobbin Castle is located near the village of Stepaside in south Dublin. This fortified tower house was built by the Walshe Family in c.1476. The Walshe family were the 'marcher lords' of the area and [...]

Once considered to be one of the finest Norman castles in Ireland

Ferns Castle, Ferns. County Wexford           1220 Ferns castle is considered to be one of the finest examples of an Anglo-Norman fortress in Ireland. This was originally the stronghold of Diarmaid Mc Murrough (1110 – 1171). [...]

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