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The ten Greatest Fortress Accommodations in Eire

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Spending an evening in a luxurious fortress lodge in Eire is a magical expertise. Being away from the crowds of daytime guests means that you can take in the enchanting ambiance of lots of of years of historical past and benefit from the romance of unbelievable surroundings, luxurious suites and facilities galore.

View of Ashford Castle, one of the best castle hotels in the world.
Ashford fortress is among the world’s prime fortress resorts.

Whereas visiting an Irish fortress through the day is a should on any trip in Eire, you really want to sleep in a single in a single day as a way to expertise every part that storybook fortress lodging has to supply.

For culinary travellers, there’s the added bonus of nice meals — locally-sourced and regionally-inspired — crafted by a few of Eire’s prime cooks.  

A trio of starters at Cedars an Irish castle restaurant.
A lot of Eire’s luxurious fortress additionally occur to be eating locations. (Credit score: Cedars Restaurant at Lough Eske Fortress)

What’s an Irish Fortress Lodge? 

However, to start with what precisely is a fortress? How is it totally different than a fortress, a fortified manor home or a monastery?

Castles in western Europe date to the ninth century once they have been constructed of stone as personal fortresses. 

Situated in strategic positions providing vantage factors for viewing the countryside (and invading forces), they have been usually surrounded by moats with thick partitions accessed by drawbridges which might be raised for  defence.

Aerial view of Kells Priory. Credit kevin-b-leigh-571558-unsplash
Ruins of castles, fortresses, church buildings and monasteries corresponding to Kells Priory will be present in Eire. (Credit score: Kevin B. Leigh on Unsplash)

The dwelling quarters have been situated inside essentially the most closely fortified, inside of the fortress. After the Renaissance, there was a separation between navy and home fortress structure, with manor homes or palaces designed as a castle-style residence.

When the maintenance of the fortress or manor home turned prohibitively costly to keep up by a person household, most of the historic buildings have been transformed to Irish fortress resorts and opened to the general public.

You’re certain to see many picturesque ruins in your journey itinerary via Eire however not all of them are castles. Many are priories (monasteries), fortresses or deserted church buildings.

As a result of most fortress lodgings are situated exterior of the most important cities, you’ll must take an escorted tour (corresponding to Perception Holidays) that features a fortress keep or lease a automotive to journey independently.  

To get the most effective deal in your automotive rental in Eire, examine charges and reserve at Discovercars.com an internet automotive rental web site that options main suppliers corresponding to Hertz, Eurocar, Alamo and so forth. with no hidden charges. 

Final Checklist of the Greatest Fortress Accommodations in Eire 

Whereas there are a number of beautiful fortress resorts in Eire, I haven’t visited sufficient to have the ability to select essentially the most lovely castles of all.

So I referred to as upon my journey colleagues and specialists to share their ideas and assist me determine. Listed here are our prime picks for the most effective luxurious fortress resorts in Eire: 

1. Ashford Fortress, County Mayo

Ashford Castle is one of the Best Castle Hotel in Ireland
Set on expansive gardens and plush forest, Ashford Fortress is among the world’s most luxurious resorts. (Credit score: Michele Peterson) 

Set on 140 hectares inside an archipelago of lakes, streams and woodland forest, this opulent lodge close to Galway in County Mayo is on the prime of the checklist of luxurious fortress resorts in Eire. 

The Ashford property stretches north to the village of Cong, dwelling to a stone Abbey the place Rory O’Connor, the final Excessive King of Eire, spent his closing days in 1198.

Ashford Fortress’s silhouette has developed because it was first inbuilt 1228 as an Anglo-Norman stronghold.  Reinvented as a French chateau within the 1700s after which as a summer time residence for the Guinness household from 1852 to 1939, the property set on Lough Corrib ( the biggest lake in Eire) options woodlands dotted with mushrooms, ferns and moss.

It’s additionally one of many prime locations for fly fishing in Eire. You possibly can anticipate to catch wild brown trout, salmon and pike within the space.   

In 2013, the Tollman household of  The Journey Company (which incorporates Perception Holidays, Uniworld, Trafalgar and extra) bought Ashford Fortress below their Crimson Carnation Accommodations model.

They upgraded the inside’s plumbing, electrical and 826 home windows, whereas including opulent antiques, gleaming oak woodwork, lavish visitor rooms and modern facilities. It’s now one of many world’s prime resorts and certainly one of Eire’s most luxurious (and priciest) fortress stays. Visiting Ashford Fortress is certainly one of many prime issues to do in Galway.  

Additional Particular: Whereas one of many prime experiences is having fun with the luxury afternoon tea at Ashford Fortress and think about of the gardens, meals followers additionally gained’t need to miss the elegant George V Eating Room, glowing with Waterford Crystal and Murano glass chandeliers. 

Underneath the course of expert Chef Philippe Farineau, the delicacies celebrates the land’s seasonal bounty. Throughout my keep, highlights of the 12-course tasting menu embody wild venison with candy black present gel and Mrs Tollman’s personal recipe for creamy Billi Bi Mussel Soup.     

Click on right here to verify costs and availability for the Lodge at Ashford Fortress (situated BESIDE Ashford Fortress) on Reserving.com  

Click on right here to verify costs and availability for Ashford Fortress Lodge on their web site. Join their e-newsletter to obtain particular gives, information and bulletins. 

Michele Peterson, A Style for Journey 

2. Kilkea Fortress Lodge, County Kildare  

Kilkea Castle Best Castle Hotels in Ireland Credit Green Globe Travel
Lovely Kilkea Fortress gives an expensive fortress keep

Bought just a few years in the past by Boston-based builder Jay Cashman and his actress spouse, Christy, Kilkea Fortress is Eire’soldest constantly inhabited fortress. It’s additionally one of the lovely fortress resorts in Eire.

Set on 180 lushly landscaped acres in County Kildare, Kilkea was simply our favorite of the assorted totally different castles we visited throughout our 10 days exploring the Emerald Isle.

The medieval fortress was initially constructed by Sir Walter de Riddlesford in 1180. His granddaughter finally inherited the property and married Maurice Fitzgerald, the third baron of Offaly. From that time on, Kilkea Fortress Lodge remained within the Fitzgerald household for over 700 years.

Now the fortress has been utterly refurbished, and “posh” is one of the best ways to explain the brand new inside. From the homey bar and intimate personal eating space to the implausible restaurant and beautiful English gardens, Kilkea Fortress simply ranks amongst our favorite locations we’ve ever stayed!

Additional Particular: We stayed within the Ernest Shackleton Suite (named after Kildare’s well-known explorer), which boasted a large king measurement mattress, a stunning sitting space with a window overlooking the verdant grounds, a romantic fire, and luxurious toiletries.

Click on right here to verify for lowest costs on Kilkea Fortress Lodge on Reserving.com

Bret Love & Mary Gabbett, Inexperienced World Journey  

3. Abbeyglen Fortress Lodge – Galway County 

Ever need to simply really feel like royalty for a day? Properly, you’ll be able to have your probability at Abbeyglen Fortress Lodge in County Galway, one of many finest counties in Eire for tradition, pubs and music.  

This property, which was constructed in 1832, has quite a lot of basic bedrooms out there however there are additionally 9 luxurious suites out there which can be match for kings and queens.

Proper from the nice and cozy welcome you’ll obtain upon arrival to the superb companies and facilities, you’ll really feel pampered and relaxed.

On website, you’ll discover a wellness centre, a tennis courtroom, a lounge, a four-mile strolling path and a piano bar that usually hosts dwell music and storytelling.

The fortress restaurant options conventional gourmand dishes showcasing native seafood and produce. Abbeyglen Fortress is simply a brief stroll away from the tiny coastal city of Clifden, identified for its Connemara ponies and choice of charming pubs and retailers.

Abbeyglen Fortress Lodge is among the finest Irish fortress resorts for households.

Additional Particular: Communal bonfires are held exterior every night time so you’ll be able to meet new individuals and revel in singing songs and telling tales below the night time sky.

Test charges and availability at AbbeyGlen Fortress Lodge on Reserving.com  

4. Kilronan Fortress Property & Spa

Dusk at Kilronan Castle Estate and Spa.
Nightfall at Kilronan Fortress Property and Spa. (Credit score: Kilronan Fortress)

Located in County Roscommon in western Eire, Kilronan Fortress Property & Spa is a ravishing property constructed within the 1700s. It’s  one of many finest fortress stays in Eire.

It seems like one thing you’d see in a fantasy novel, however behind the massive gates and durable partitions is a world of contemporary facilities, luxurious lodging, positive eating and stress-free spa experiences.

Contained in the thoughtfully restored visitor rooms and suites, you’ll discover a wealth of vintage furnishings. The on-site eating experiences embody the beautiful Douglas Hyde Restaurant, the drawing room and Palm Courtroom, the place Afternoon Tea is served each day. 

Additional Particular: This fortress lodge is situated on 40 acres of secluded woodlands. You’ll discover a number of trails that’ll take you thru a lush forest space. That is the proper alternative to get away from all of it and take a second to be one with nature.

Test charges and availability at Kilronan Fortress Property & Spa on Reserving.com. 

5. Lough Rynn Fortress and Property and Gardens

As soon as the household dwelling of the Clements household and well-known Lord Leitrim, Lough Rynn is now a luxurious fortress lodge in County Leitrim and one of many finest fortress lodging in Eire.

With a novel marriage of old-world grace and trendy opulence, strolling round this lovely and historic property is like taking a stroll into the previous.

Exterior, you’ll discover walled gardens, lots of of acres of beautiful vistas and an abundance of secluded areas the place you’ll be able to simply be one with nature.

Inside, you’ll discover a number of eating choices together with the Dungeon Bar and the award-winning Sandstone Restaurant the place you’ll take pleasure in scrumptious dishes made with contemporary produce straight from the on-site backyard.

No want to fret about sleeping in a drafty fortress room! At Lough Rynn Fortress your luxurious visitor room or suite options underfloor heating.

Additional Particular: Afternoon tea is served every day between 1:00 PM and 4:00 PM within the elegant drawing room.

Test charges and availability at Lough Rynn Fortress on Reserving.com.

6. Fortress Leslie Property, County Managhan

Snaffles Gin Wall Credit Castle Leslie Estate
An expansive gin menu is a spotlight of a fortress keep at Fortress Leslie Property

Increase a glass to Fortress Leslie Property, an Irish fortress lodge in Monaghan that scooped the Folks’s Alternative Award for Eire’s Favorite Place to Keep on the 2017 Lodge & Catering Evaluation Gold Medal Awards.

Along with the fortress’s vibrant previous, the odd secret passage or two and a visitor checklist that features Sir Paul McCartney (who married second spouse, Heather Mills right here), Fortress Leslie Property is thought for its fine-dining restaurant,

Snaffles, a spacious brasserie with a wood-burning stone oven and a hand-carved ceiling. It’s additionally surprisingly reasonably priced. 

Additional Particular: Fortress Leslie’s restaurant has a newly-expanded gin menu that lists greater than 80 gins. One to strive? Bertha’s Revenge, a small batch Irish milk gin made with 18 totally different botanicals corresponding to candy woodruff, cardamom and cumin. 

Click on right here to verify for the bottom costs for Fortress Leslie Property Lodge Eire on Reserving.com.

Carol Perehudoff, Wandering Carol Luxurious Journey Weblog 

7. Clontarf Fortress Lodge, Dublin

Clontarf Castle Hotel near Dublin Credit- The Daily Adventures of Me
Nice for households, this lovely fortress is close to Dublin

After I took my children to Eire final 12 months one of many issues they most needed to do was sleep in a fortress. We have been solely within the nation for a weekend, so wanted a fortress handy to Dublin. Clontarf Fortress Lodge was the proper reply for my household.

This lovely luxurious fortress lodge is simply quarter-hour exterior of the center of town and north of the quaint fishing village of Howth. It’s one of many finest day journeys from Dublin. 

There was a fortress on the grounds for the reason that Viking days, however the present fortress was constructed within the early 1800s. The inside is superbly designed, however fairly industrial and busy.

In the event you go, make sure to try the attractive wood bar and eat within the restaurant which was filled with locals keen to speak with us.

Additional Particular: Clontarf Fortress Lodge is among the finest castles to remain in for households. Listed here are some solutions for issues to do if you happen to’ve received 48 hours to spend in Dublin.  

Click on right here for the most effective costs on Clontarf Fortress Lodge close to Dublin, Eire on Reserving.com

Jamie Italiane, The Day by day Adventures of Me

8. Lough Eske Fortress Lodge  

Fancy dessert at Cedars restaurant in the Irish Castle of Lough Eske.
Cedars Restaurant at Lough Eske Fortress is certainly one of Eire’s finest eating locations. (Credit score: Lough Eske Fortress)

Supreme for a foodie escape, Lough Eske Fortress is a 5-star fortress lodge situated in County Donegal. With each visitor room distinctive and   superbly restored and adorned, this fortress lodging is particularly common for weddings.

However a spotlight of this Irish fortress is its delicacies. Lough Eske is price travelling to only for the meals. At Cedars, the fortress’s on-site fine-dining restaurant, you’ll take pleasure in first-rate hospitality whereas eating on expertly ready dishes corresponding to salmon with sea herbs impressed by the Wild Atlantic Means. 

Vegans will probably be happy with the particular vegan menu with plant-based treats like salt baked beetroot tartare and cauliflower risotto. 

Once you’re not eating or stress-free in your cozy personal house, there’s lots to do on the fortress grounds. E book a spa day on the CARA Natural Magnificence Spa and wash all of your stress away with entry to a jet bathtub, steam room, thermal suite, sauna, heated benches and a stunning infinity pool.

Preserve updated along with your health room within the totally outfitted fitness center. Get pleasure from all this whereas surrounded by unbelievable views of the beautiful panorama throughout you.

Additional Particular: A free historical past tour takes place day-after-day at 11:00 AM so you’ll be able to study concerning the historical past of this fortress and the O’Donnell household who constructed it again within the fifteenth century.

Test charges and availability at Lough Eske Fortress Lodge on Reserving.com

9. Dromoland Fortress Lodge, close to Shannon

Dromoland Castle most beautiful castles in Ireland Credit Showthemtheglobe
Step again in time at lovely Dromoland Fortress

From the second one enters the magnificent grounds of Dromoland and first units eyes on the beautiful fortress, it’s evident that friends are in for a tremendous expertise.

The within of the fortress is like stepping again in time with its outdated world really feel and conventional décor. The fortress has retained a lot of its unique model and options and there’s a feast of nooks and crannies ready to be explored and loved.

Set in Newmarket-on-Fergus north of Shannon, this 5 star fortress has been welcoming friends for the reason that 16th century and it’s an actual deal with to expertise a luxurious keep throughout the historic fortress partitions.

Every little thing about Dromoland Fortress is world class from the lavish rooms, the famend golf course, the attractive grounds and the indulgent eating. It’s undoubtedly top-of-the-line fortress resorts in Eire.

A keep at Dromoland is the quintessential Irish fortress expertise and a must-include on any Eire go to!

Additional Particular: For a particular deal with,  Mrs. White’s Afternoon Tea, top-of-the-line afternoon teas in Eire, is a culinary spotlight of any go to.

Click on right here for the bottom costs on Dromoland Fortress Lodge on Reserving.com

Elaine and Dave, Present Them the Globe 

10. Ballyseede Fortress Lodge, Limerick 

Situated in County Kerry, the historic Ballyseede Fortress gives well-appointed lodging surrounded by 30 acres of lovely gardens and forest.

The putting oak staircase within the foyer is your first style of what the remainder of the inside seems like. Marble fireplaces and lavish drawing rooms are simply a few of the elegant touches you’ll see as you wander the halls of this grand lodge!

The rooms and suites are simply as luxurious because the communal areas of the lodge and the meals served at The O’Connell Restaurant is a scrumptious assortment of Irish delicacies and positive wines.

That is amongst one of many finest resorts close to Limerick, Eire if you happen to don’t thoughts driving 1.5 hours to discover this historic and vibrant metropolis.

Additional Particular: Unwind after the lengthy journey to Ballyseede Fortress with a welcoming afternoon tea session.

Test charges and availability at Ballyseede Fortress  on Reserving.com. 

Initially printed in 2018, this text was researched, considerably up to date and expanded in 2022 with new data and pictures.   

Journey Suggestions for a Trip on the Greatest Fortress Accommodations in Eire

Whether or not you’re planning on spending 7 days in Eire otherwise you’re simply visiting for just a few days, there’s undoubtedly a fortress lodge you’ll be able to match into your schedule.

Packing: You’ll want to convey clothes with loads of layers as temperatures can fluctuate even inside modernized castles.

You’ll additionally need to exploring the fortress estates so anticipate rain, wind and fog — all a part of the atmospheric Irish expertise!

best castles to stay in Ireland Ashford Castle
With its luxurious decor, Ashford Fortress is among the finest castles to remain in Eire

Execs and Cons of Fortress Lodging

When planning a fortress trip in Eire, it’s price contemplating the professionals and cons of staying in a fortress. Whereas staying in a single day in an Irish fortress will be an unforgettable and distinctive expertise crammed with character, there are essential concerns to consider when selecting among the many finest fortress resorts in Eire on your keep.

In the event you’re planning a honeymoon or milestone celebration corresponding to a particular birthday or anniversary, this isn’t the time to go for a finances fortress lodge.

If a fortress just isn’t effectively maintained or modernized you will be in for a drafty, chilly night time. Rooms is probably not as soundproof as you may anticipate.

You additionally want to contemplate the situation and the number of issues to do on the fortress of your alternative.

Issues to Do on a Luxurious Fortress Trip

  • Horseback driving on guided journeys throughout the moors or alongside forest trails
  • Sightseeing throughout a scenic boat tour of a close-by lough (lake)
  • Fishing for salmon or fly-fishing for brown trout within the small mountain streams, rivers and loughs of Eire
  • Experiencing the artwork of falconry that includes aerial acrobatics by birds of prey corresponding to falcons, hawks, eagles and owls.
  • Basking in a luxurious spa. Plan forward and e book a wellness therapy upfront to keep away from disappointment.

Official Eire Tourism: Try www.eire.com for journey concepts, maps and different useful sources for planning an Irish fortress trip or different experiences in Eire.

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Collage of interior and exterior images of Ashford Castle.

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Which are the best castle hotels in Ireland? You'll definitely want to stay in one of these incredibly beautiful luxury castle hotels on your vacation in Ireland

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