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For many people, the imprint on Ireland of the people often called the Anglo-Normans can be summed up in a single word – castles. By the early modern period Ireland’s was the most castellated landscape in Europe. Here is a selection of castles all within a short trip of Bunglasha Lodge.

Bunratty Castle

Bunratty West, Bunratty, Co. Clare

Bunratty Castle is famous for the amazing banquets that it offers to visitors from all over the world.

Bunratty Castle is the most complete and authentic medieval fortress in Ireland. Built in 1425 it was restored to its former medieval splendour in 1954,  and now contains mainly 15th and 16th century furnishings, tapestries, and works of art, capturing the mood of those times.

At Bunratty Folk Park you’ll experience a living reconstruction of the homes and environment of the Ireland of over a century ago.

Website | Map Location

Dunguaire Castle

Dungory East, Kinvarra, Co. Galway

Dunguaire Castle and its history lies at the heart of the Ireland’s literary revival in the early 20th century.

It was built in 1520 by the O’Hynes clan on the picturesque shores of Galway Bay. This restored 16th century tower house sits on a rocky outcrop on the shores of Galway Bay.

Website | Map Location

Ross Castle

Ross Rd, Ross Island, Killarney, Co. Kerry

Ross Castle sits on the edge of Killarney’s lower lake and was built by O’Donoghue Mór in the 15th century. The Castle came into the hands of the Brownes who became the Earls of Kenmare and owned an extensive portion of the lands that are now part of Killarney National Park . Legend has it that O’Donoghue still exists in a deep slumber under the waters of Lough Leane.

On the first morning of May every seven years he rises from the lake on his magnificent 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.

Website | Map Location

King John’s Castle

King’s Island, Limerick City

Located at the heart of Limerick’s medieval quarter, STEP INSIDE the walls of Limerick’s most iconic landmark! Discover the stories of ruthless King John, the noble knights, and rebellious natives.

King John’s Castle brings to life over 800 years of dramatic local history. Explore the spacious outdoor courtyard where you’ll get a sense of the bustling activity that took place many years ago. On your journey, expect to see some lively characters.

Website | Map Location

The Rock of Cashel

Cashel, Co. Tipperary

According to local legends, the Rock of Cashel originated in the Devil’s Bit, a mountain 20 miles (30 km) north of Cashel when St. Patrick banished Satan from a cave, resulting in the Rock’s landing in Cashel. Cashel is reputed to be the site of the conversion of the King of Munster by St. Patrick in the 5th century.

The Rock of Cashel was the traditional seat of the kings of Munster for several hundred years prior to the Norman invasion. In 1101, the King of Munster, Muirchertach Ua Briain, donated his fortress on the Rock to the Church.

Website | Map Location

Craggaunowen

Craggaunowen is a 16th-century castle and an archaeological open-air museum in County Clare, Ireland. Craggaunowen is located 10 km east of Quin, County Clare.

Website | Map Location

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