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Ross Castle

Ross Castle

Southwest Ireland | County Kerry

Ross Castle is situated on the shore of Lough Leane, in Killarney Town, County Kerry. The exact date of construction is uncertain but probably was built in late 15th century by O'Donoghue Mór chieftains, who had undisputed hold over Killarney area at that time. In 1580's after Second Desmond Rebellion, Ross Castle passed into the hands of Donal MacCarthy, but not for long. He mortgaged the castle in turn to Sir Valentine Browne (Surveyor General of Ireland appointed in 1559 by Queen Elizabeth I of England), who has taken it later under the debt. During the Cromwellian Invasion in 17th century the Ross Castle was recorded as being one of the last of surrended irish strongholds. Under the pressure of the numerical advantage of the opponent, which additionally brought an armed ship, Lord Muskerry, commander of the Munster forces of the Confederate Catholics surrended the castle to Ludlow, general of Cromwell's troops. Brownes managed to regain the castle some time later, and Sir Valentine Browne, the grandson of Surveyor General, added a large mansion house to the south side of the castle. In 1690, during Williamite War, as supporter of Jacobite cause, he has lost the castle again. Then, until 1825 Ross Castle served as a military barracks. In the mean time, Sir Valentine Browne regained castle and lands but they have never moved there again. He was also granted the title Earl of Kenmare. They built more comfortable "Kenmare House" in Killarney town and let the castle to fell into decay. In 1952, after death of 7th and last Earl of Kenmare, Ross Castle was sold to an American syndicate, which sold the property two years later to Mr. John McShain. From 1970 castle was taken into state care and after extensive renovation works, in 1990 was open to the public as tourist attraction. The Ross Castle consists of typical for the period tower house surrounded by deffesive wall with round towers on each corner (two of four have survived to today). In the tower house is fully furnished and consist of parlour and justice room on first floor, bed chamber (with fine vaulted ceiling, reconstucted using medieval technics), garderobe and servants quarters on second floor, kitchen and great hall with gallery on third floor.

    • 3rd March - 31st October :
      • Daily: 9.30 – 17.45
      • Last admission 45 min before closing
    • Adult: 5€
    • Child/Student: 3€
    • Senior/Group: 4€
    • Family: 13€
    • Phone: +353 64 663 5851
  • CAR PARK :
    • Yes

Photos from Ross Castle