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Use your OPW Heritage Card to Explore these Heritage Sites

You can use your OPW Heritage Card to explore all these wonderful sites from Castles and Abbeys to Great Houses, Historic Parks and Amazing Gardens. You can also download a PDF of the 'Heritage Sites of Ireland 2019' Brochure from our Downloads section. The brochure is available in Irish, English, French, and German. A copy of the brochure will be sent with each order received, and copies of the brochure are also available from the heritage sites you visit. 

NOTE: The sites below are presented in summary, but you can link from each summary to their full profile on HeritageIreland.ie by clicking 'view'. 

Opening Dates and Times: The opening months below are for general guidance only. Please note that some sites may be closed or operate with restrictions in place during 2020 in light of emerging circumstances and as Covid measures are installed. See HeritageIsland.ie. For more detailed information on opening dates, times and advisory information, please click 'view'.

Limerick

Adare Castle

Adare Heritage Centre, Adare, Co. Limerick
Open June to September

A fine example of a medieval fortified castle. It was an important stronghold of the Earls of Desmond.

Kerry

Ardfert Cathedral

Ardfert, Tralee, Co. Kerry
Open late March to late September

A monastery founded by St. Brendan 'The Navigator' in the 6th century. There are three medieval churches, two ogham stones and early Christian and medieval grave slabs on the site.

 

Galway

Athenry Castle

Athenry Castle, Co. Galway
Open late March to early October

Restored three storey 13th Century Norman Keep. The interior contains unique stone carvings of the period.

Galway

Aughnanure Castle

Oughterard, Co.Galway
Open late February to late November

Built close to the shores of Lough Corrib c1500. Aughnanure Castle is a beautifully restored Gaelic  Tower House built by one of the most ferocious Irish clans - The O'Flahertys.

Meath

Battle of the Boyne – Oldbridge Estate

Battle of the Boyne (Visitor Centre), Oldbridge, Drogheda, Co. Meath
Open January to December

The Battle of the Boyne between King William III and his father-in-law, King James II, was fought in 1690. At stake were the British throne, French dominance in Europe and religious power in Ireland.

Roscommon

Boyle Abbey

Boyle, Co. Roscommon
Open late March to late September

An impressive and well preserved Cistercian Monastery which was founded in the 12th century.

Meath

Brú na Bóinne Visitor Centre (Newgrange and Knowth)

Donore, Co. Meath
Open January to December

Interprets the archaeological heritage of the Boyne Valley, including the megalithic tombs of Newgrange & Knowth. A busy site, see 'view' for an advice note.

Tipperary

Cahir Castle

Cahir, Co. Tipperary
Open January to December

One of Ireland's largest and best-preserved castles, once the stronghold of the powerful Butler family.  The castle retains its impressive keep, tower and much of its defensive structure. 

Sligo

Carrowmore Megalithic Cemetery

Carrowmore, Co. Sligo
Open late March to early November

Irelands largest megalithic cemetery with over 60 tombs, some among the oldest in the country.

Dublin

Casino Marino

Marino, Dublin 3
Closed for essential maintenance

The Casino, meaning “small house”, surprisingly contains 16 finely decorated rooms, endlessly rich in subtlety and design. It is a remarkable building - in terms of structure and history. 

Kildare

Castletown

Celbridge, Co. Kildare
Open March to mid December. Park open year round.

Castletown is the largest and most significant Palladian style country house in Ireland. The house is set amongst beautiful 18th-century parklands.

Mayo

Céide Fields

Ballycastle, Co. Mayo
Open mid March to October

Stone Age landscape of stone-walled fields, dwellings and megalithic tombs preserved under blanket bogland, over 5,000 years old.

Cork

Charles Fort

Summer Cove, Kinsale, Co. Cork
Open January to December

A classic example of a 17th Century star-shaped fort. As one of the largest military installations in the country, it has been associated with some of the most momentous events in Irish history. 

Offaly

Clonmacnoise

Shannonbridge, Athlone, Co. Offaly
Open January to December

A 6th Century monastic site, with three high crosses, a Cathedral, seven churches and two round towers. A busy site. See 'view' for advice notice.

Kerry

Derrynane House, National Historic Park

Caherdaniel, Co.Kerry
Open mid March to early December

The ancestral home of Daniel O'Connell, lawyer, politician and statesman. Situated on 120 hectares of parklands on the scenic Kerry coast.

Cork

Desmond Castle Kinsale

Cork Street, Kinsale, Co. Cork
Closed for renovations

Built by the Earl of Desmond c. 1500. A fine example of an urban tower house, the castle consists of a three-storey keep with storehouses to the rear.

Donegal

Donegal Castle

Donegal Town, Co.Donegal
Open January to December

Built by the O'Donnell chieftain in the 15th century, beside the River Eske, with the addition of a 17th Century Jacobean manor house. The Castle is furnished throughout. 

Cork

Doneraile Court

Doneraile, Co. Cork
Open January to December

The Park comprises approximately 166 hectares and is an outstanding example of an 18th century landscaped park in the 'Capability Brown' style.

Dublin

Dublin Castle

Dame Street, Dublin 2
Open January to December

Originally a Norman Castle, today it mainly contains buildings from the 17th to 20th centuries in addition to medieval remnants.

Galway

Dún Aonghasa

Aran, Co.Galway
Open January to December

Perched on a cliff overlooking the Atlantic ocean, Dún Aonghasa is the largest of the prehistoric stone forts of the Aran Islands. 

Kilkenny

Dunmore Cave

Ballyfoyle, Co. Kilkenny
Open mid March to October

One of Ireland’s most interesting limestone caves consisting of a series of chambers formed over millions of years. It was the site of a Viking massacre in 928. 

Laois

Emo Court

Emo, Co. Laois
Open late May to early October

This Magnificent Neo-Classical mansion was designed by James Gandon in 1790 for the Earls of Portarlington. Visit the house, exhibitions, parklands, lake walks, and tearooms.

Clare

Ennis Friary

Abbey Street, Ennis, Co. Clare
Open April to November 1

This 13th-century Franciscan friary, founded by the O'Briens, of Thomond who once ruled much of north Munster, has numerous 15th/16th-century sculptures carved in the local hard limestone.

Dublin

Farmleigh

Phoenix Park, Dublin 8
Open January to December

78 acres estate, purchased by the OPW on behalf of the Government, and developed to provide accommodation for visiting dignitaries and guests of the nation.  

Kerry

Gallarus Oratory

Gallarus, Dingle, Co. Kerry
Open January to December

One of the best-preserved Christian sites in Ireland. Access to the Oratory is available all year. However, the Visitor Centre closes for the winter months.

Donegal

Glebe House and Gallery

Glebe, Churchill, Letterkenny, Co. Donegal
Open late May to early November

Regency house decorated with Victorian William Morris wallpaper, textiles and artworks by leading 20th Century artists. Access to the house by guided tour only.

Wicklow

Glendalough Visitor Centre

Glendalough, Co. Wicklow
Open January to December

Famous for its monastic site founded in the 6th C. It has a round tower, stone churches and numerous crosses.

Donegal

Glenveagh Castle

Churchill, Letterkenny, Co. Donegal
Open January to December

16,500 hectares of mountains, lakes, glens and woods, and a 19th Century castle surrounded by the famous Glenveagh Gardens. The Castle's interior is accessible by tour only. 

Meath

Hill of Tara

Navan, Co. Meath
Open late April to mid September

Seat of the High Kings of Ireland, it was the most important centre of political and religious power in pre-Christian Ireland. Site accessible outside of the season (excluding the church).

Cork

Ilnacullin (Garinish Island)

Glengarriff, Bantry, Co. Cork
Open April to November 3

Island garden of rare beauty situated in the sheltered harbour of Glengarriff in Bantry Bay. Access by boat/ferry.

Kerry

Ionad an Bhlascaoid Mhóir, The Blascaod Centre

Baile an Fheirtéaraigh, Trá Lí, Co.Chiarraí
Open late March to early November

Celebrates the story of the Blasket Islanders their native language, culture and tradition

Galway

Ionad Cultúrtha an Phiarsaigh Conamara - A Connemara Cultural Centre

An Gort Mhór, Rosmuc, Co na Gaillimhe
Open January to December

This state-of-the-art visitor centre celebrates the culture, and landscape of the Connemara Gaeltacht. The area’s unique heritage attracted  Patrick Pearse, leader of the 1916 Rising, to spend his summers here.

Kilkenny

Jerpoint Abbey

Thomastown, Co. Kilkenny
Open January to December

An outstanding Cistercian abbey founded in the second half of the 12th century. The church, with its Romanesque details, dates from this period.

Wexford

JFK Memorial Park and Arboretum

New Ross, Co. Wexford
Open January to December

252 hectares including 4,500 types of tree and shrubs, 200 forest plots, rhododendrons and dwarf conifers.

Kilkenny

Kilkenny Castle

Kilkenny City, Co. Kilkenny
Open January to December

A 12th-century castle remodelled in Victorian times. Recently restored to 1830s splendour, the castle is set in extensive parklands. High-season is self-guiding. Low-season by guided tour only.

Dublin

Kilmainham Gaol

Inchicore Road, Kilmainham, Dublin 8
Open January to December

Kilmainham Gaol is one of the largest unoccupied gaols in Europe, covering some of the most heroic and tragic events in Ireland's emergence as a modern nation.

Kerry

Muckross House & Gardens

National Park, Killarney Co. Kerry
Open January to December

Magnificent Victorian mansion & world-renowned gardens. Access to Muckross House by Guided Tour Only. This is a very busy site and delays may be experienced.

Louth

Old Mellifont Abbey

Tullyallen, Drogheda, Co. Louth
Open late May to early September

Ireland’s first Cistercian monastery. Its most unique features being its octagonal lavabo c.1200.

Tipperary

Ormond Castle

Castle Park, Carrick-on-Suir, Co. Tipperary
Open late March to early November

The best example of an Elizabethan manor house in Ireland. It was built by Thomas, the 10th Earl of Ormond, in the 1560s. 

Leitrim

Parke's Castle

Fivemile Bourne, Co. Leitrim
Open late March to early October

 

17th Century fortified manor house, recently restored using Irish oak and traditional craftsmanship. Picturesquely situated on the shores of Lough Gill.

Galway

Portumna Castle

Portumna, Co. Galway
Open January to December

Built before 1618, this Jacobean manor was the seat of the De Burgo family for over 200 years. Includes  recently restored 17th century walled kitchen garden

Roscommon

Rathcroghan Visitor Centre

Cruachan Aí, Tulsk, Castlerea, Co. Roscommon
Open January to December

The Royal complex of Rathcroghan, capital of ancient Connacht, holds an amazing wealth of both unique archaeology and illuminating literature, dating back over 6,000 years.

Dublin

Rathfarnham Castle

Rathfarnham Road, Dublin 14
Open January to December

A 16th Century castle with 18th Century interiors by Sir William Chambers and James ‘Athenian’ Stuart.

Waterford

Reginald's Tower

The Quay, Waterford
Open January to mid December

Restored 13th Century circular tower, originally part of the town’s defences. It was later used as a mint, prison and military store

Tipperary

Rock of Cashel

Cashel, Co. Tipperary
Open January to December

A spectacular group of Medieval buildings set on an outcrop of limestone in the Golden Vale. This is a busy site, see 'view' for guidance.

Tipperary

Roscrea Heritage (Castle and Damer House) and the Blackmills

Castle Street, Roscrea, Co.Tipperary
Open late March to late September

Restored Mill and High Cross. 18th Century Queen Ann style Damer House located in the courtyard of a 13th Century castle.

Kerry

Ross Castle

Killarney, Co. Kerry
Open March to early November

A restored 15th Century castle which now houses a fine collection of 16th & 17th Century oak furniture.

Sligo

Sligo Abbey

Abbey Street, Sligo, Co. Sligo
Open late March to October

13th Century Dominican Friary containing the only surviving 15th Century sculptured high altar in any Irish monastic church.

Tipperary

Swiss Cottage

Cahir, Co. Tipperary
Open mid March to early November

A delightful 'cottage orné' built in the early 1800s by Richard Butler, 1st Earl of Glengall to a design by the famous Regency architect John Nash.

Wexford

Tintern Abbey

Saltmills, New Ross, Co. Wexford
Open late March to late October

A Cistercian abbey founded c. 1200 by William, the Earl Marshall, and named after Tintern in Wales. 

Meath

Trim Castle

Trim Castle, Co. Meath
Open January to December

Largest Anglo-Norman castle in Ireland, constructed by Hugh de Lacy in the 12th Century. A busy site.