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Castles in Ireland

Posted on: December 18, 2017

Castles in Ireland

If you're lucky enough to be going on a trip away to the magical land of Ireland, I'm sure there are many things you're looking forward to doing and many places you're excited to visit. Ireland has many castles dotted about, with one never being any further than just a short trip away. However, with all this choice, you surely only want to visit the best ones. Whether its Medieval castles with those beautiful turrets, castles that carry their myth and legends or you just want to have a quick look at some of the main castles, this article is for your eyes.

These 8 Castles are the best ones you'll see in Ireland, with their beauty and historic past, they make for great photo opportunities and will create great memories that you'll take home with you.

 

Kilkenny Castle, Kilkenny

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One of the most breathtaking castles is situated in Ireland's most enchanting medieval town. This visit to the castle requires quite a lot of time as it has so much history. One of the most haunted castles in Ireland, with many paranormal happenings witnessed there, it certainly won't disappoint. One of the bridges collapsed after a flood in 1763, causing the death of 16 people. There are still some who swear that they have seen ghosts in this area trying to escape towards the castle to rescue themselves. A full inside tour is available too, allowing you to see the beautiful interior.

Admission cost: Adults €8.00, Children/Student €4.00

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Rock of Cashel, Tipperary

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Although all that's left of this castle are its ruins, it’s beautifully crafted exterior is still more than worth seeing. Situated on a hill with amazing sites around, you can take in the myth that the Rock of Cashel originated in the Devil's Bit, a mountain located 20 miles away. This is supposedly where St. Patrick banished Satan from a cave (that he apparently used as a portal between Hell and Earth), resulting in the rock's landing in Cashel. Queen Elizabeth II visited this wonderful historic site on one of her visits to Ireland, so it is definitely worth seeing.

Admission cost: Adults €6.00, Children €3.00

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Blarney Castle, Cork

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Another medieval castle near Cork, built in 1210, is surrounded by beautiful gardens and has a wonderful gift shop. The grounds are a site itself and to top it off, this is where the magical legendary Blarney Stone is. It is said that if you kiss the stone, you get given the "gift of gab" (giving you the ability to enchant anyone that you meet"), making the visit more than you bargained for.

Admission cost: Adults €14.00, Children €6.00

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Trim Castle, County Meath

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Located in Trim is where the oldest Norman Castle in Ireland resides. The iconic castle is famously known for appearing in the classic film Braveheart (1995). Over time, the castle has been adapted to the changing political climate, but most of its interiors remain unchanged from the Anglo-Norman power in Ireland. The hostile landscape makes you feel the security the de Lacy family would have felt, whilst standing outside the castle, the intimidation the native population was subject to is harrowing.

Admission cost: Adults €5.00, Children €3.00

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Ross Castle, Killarney

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Located outside the town of Killarney, this castle was built in the late 15th century and overlooks the lake. A legend that sleeps here is that O'Donohue (head of the clan) was sucked from the upper windows into the lake, along with his horse. Now legend has it that he and his horse now live at the bottom of the lake keeping an eye on things.  It's said that on the first morning of May every seven years. he rises from the lake on his white horse and circles the lake. Anyone catching a glimpse of him is said to be assured of good fortune for the rest of their lives.

Admission cost: Adults €5.00, Children €3.00

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Doonagore Castle, Ballycullaun

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Although not the most typical looking castle, lacking the beauty of what one might picture a castle to be, it is quite striking and surrounded by a dramatic landscape. Dating back to the 16th century, it is certainly historic, being built from sandstone. The castle witnessed a ship sinking from the Spanish Armada, with it set in the most beautiful backdrop of the stormy sea at Doolin point. The Cliffs of Moher also overlook the castle, and it's only a few kilometers from the coastal village of Doolin. On a lighter note, a picnic can even be enjoyed on the perfect summers day overlooking the beautiful coast.

Admission cost: Free

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Kylemore Castle, Connemara

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This is one of the most picturesque castles, surrounded by a lake and amazing vibrant forests and gardens. The story behind the castle certainly adds to its character, with Mitchell Henry falling for a woman named Margaret Vaughn, he employed people of the nearby villages to build the castle as a love token for her, yet a year later she tragically died. Now, the castle is an Abbey, home to Benedictine Nuns in 1920, yet its Victorian atmosphere of the restored rooms of the abbey and gothic church still remain. On your visit make sure to not just enjoy its exterior beauty, but also its interior beauty for that Victorian interior.

Admission cost: Adults €13.00, Children (10 years and under) Free

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Dunluce Castle, Antrim

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The iconic ruin of Dunluce Castle was built on the coastal cliffs of north County around 1500. In the 17th century Dunluce was the seat of the earls of County Antrim and the establishment of a small town in 1608 grew. You can explore the findings of archaeological digs within the cobbled streets and stone merchants’ houses of the abandoned Dunluce town. The dramatic history of Dunluce is matched by tales of a banshee (spirit of a woman who warns of death) and how the castle kitchens fell into the sea one stormy night in 1639.

Admission cost: Adults €5.00, Children €3.00

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