Dunamase Castle: A Truly Ancient Reminder of the Story of Ireland
Look to Central Ireland for the ruins of
Dunamase Castle, a popular stop in County Laois in the Province of Leinster.
The Rock of Dunamase is a fantastic day trip from Dublin, since it takes less
than an hour's journey from the city.
If you're driving from Dublin Airport, you'll simply need to head south along the M7 until you take Exit 16 and follow signs directing you straight to Dunamase Castle.
Things to Know About Dunamase Castle
Here are some fun facts about this amazing Irish landmark. Hopefully they will entice you to pay a visit in person!
But if that is not possible, you can always use them to impress your friends with your knowledge of one of the most-visited attractions in Ireland.
- One of the most popular
attractions in Ireland's County Laois is Dunamase Castle, a fortress that has
been known for centuries simply as Hum.
- Early history reveals that
in the 9th century, the site had been settled, although it wasn't until the
12th century that the castle itself was erected.
- Local lore says that the
castle was besieged by Cromwell's forces in the 17th century, and ever since it
has been abandoned and vulnerable to the elements.
- Archeological excavations
take place around the ruins, and the castle is available for guided tours.
- The Castle may be best known not for its architectural structure, but its foundation. The castle rests on the iconic Dunamase Rock.
- Dunamase Rock dates back to the ninth century, when the settlement was known as Dun Masc. This early Christmas settlement was ransacked by Vikings in 824.
- At the beginning of the 12th century, a castle was constructed on Dunamase Rock. Many battles and marriages resulted in the castle passing between several families over decades. By 1350, however, it had already fallen into ruin. Brief revivals rarely lasted long.
- The castle was largely ignored during the Cromwellian Wars. In the 18th century, however, Sir John Parnell decided to build a banqueting hall right in the middle of the castle's ruins. However, his attempts to revitalize the castle were largely unsuccessful
- Today, there is free admission to the Castle. Many visitors come for the architectural, historical or archeological history.
- If you visit, consider coming in the late afternoon or early evening. You can explore the area on foot during the daylight and then admire the castle at sunset, which is arguably the best time of day to take photos of the ruins.
You can find much more information about this interesting Irish landmark here.
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