The castle gems of the Emerald Isle

Ancient grey castles set in stunning verdant countryside are one of the quintessential images of Ireland. Rugged, impregnable edifices that witnessed legendary battles long ago, safe keepers of dreadful or romantic secrets, homes to pirates and ghosts... the memories of great events in the history of the country are engraved on their stones.

From Cork to Antrim, from Mayo to Offaly, practically every Irish county boasts its castle, and the country is dotted with these great monuments. Whether you choose to go visiting the romantic ruins of ancient fortresses, or stay in one of those that has been transformed into a luxury five-star hotel, the castles of Ireland pay tribute to the country and the people of the past. Get ready to plan your next getaway: our photo gallery includes some of the most spectacular castles Ireland has to offer, and we're sure you'll be tempted.

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