Clonboo Castle was a four storey tower house which was believed to have been built by the Skerritt family in the 15th century. It was recorded that the castle was held by Moyler MacShean in 1574. Although now in ruins, some features of the castle can still be seen such as the entrance on the north side, corbels of a former machicolation which project from the parapet and a partial spiral staircase.
Sitting on the banks of Lough Derg, Cloondagauv Castle is believed to have been a tower house built by the De Burgo (Burke) family. Although little is known about the uninhabited castle, it is still relatively well in tack with features such as chimney stacks, bartizans and a boxed machicolation over the entrance still present.
Clooneen Castle was believed to have been a 14th century tower house which was part of the manor of Headford. Unfortunately there is little further known in regards the castle and it’s ruins adding to its mystery.
According to the ‘Annals of the Four Masters’, Corofin Castle was built in 1451 by Lord Clanricarde for Emelina De Burgo (Burke). The castle was part of the manor of Headford. Records show that the castle was later held by Richard De Burgo (Burke) in 1585. The entrance of the castle has grooves for a portcullis which more than likely existed in the past and there is remains of a staircase.
Creganna Castle was a 15th century tower house stronghold built by the O’Heynes family. The castle was attacked and fell to the Reddingtons clan. The castle long lay in ruins until recently where it was restored for use as a private dwelling.
Unfortunately there is little known about Creggmulgrany Castle, other than records show that the six storey tower house was held by Shane Roewgh in 1574.
Unfortunately there is little known about Cummer Castle, an early Norman tower house. It was recorded that the castle was demolished and fell to the forces of Cromwell in the 1650’s.
Daly Castle was a 19th century manor house to the Daly family. The facade of the partial remains still highlight the outline of an old 16th century Blake tower originally known as Corbally. It was acquired by Peter Daly in 1829 where he remodeled the castle and change the facade. As a result the castle became known as Castledaly or Daly Castle. It is now a ruin with only the facade of the building remaining. A mausoleum of the Daly family can be seen in the grounds of the nearby church.
Deerpark Castle was a 15th century MacHubert-Burke tower house. The castle is a tall slim tower with a small guard chamber to the right of the doorway and a fragmentary spiral stairway to the left. It was believed that the tower was intended to be part of a larger structure but there is no indication that other structures of the castle existed. Unusually the tower seems to feature remains of a dovecote which seems to have been incorporated in the structure at some stage.
Derrydonnell Castle was a 15th century six storey tower house built by the Clann Richards. It’s name derives from the O’Donnell clan who spent the night at the castle before their attack on Athenry. The castle, although now in ruins, still outline the remains of a bawn with a dungeon which brings great mystery to the castle as to what or who the dungeon would have held in the past.
Derryhivenny Castle was built in 1643 and was the stronghold tower house for the O’Madden family. The O’Madden family held the lands around Derryhivenny from around the year 950 to the middle of the 17th century. The head of the family, John O’Madden, died in 1639, leaving the lands to his son, Daniel O’Madden who quickly set about building himself this tower house. The outbreak of war in 1641 more or less led to an end in the building of true castles making Derryhivenny one of the very last tower houses in the country. In fact, its late date of building can be seen in the absence of vaults on all four storeys of the tower and by its picturesque diagonally disposed Jacobean chimney-stacks. Though the castle is now abandoned and derelict for centuries, the tower house is still in well preserved condition.
Derrymaclaughna Castle was a five storey tower house believed to have been built in the 16th century as a stronghold for the De Burgo (Burke) family. Records show that the castle was held by John De Burgo (Burke) in 1574 and that it remained in the family for centuries as it was also recorded in 1786 as the seat of the Burke family. The castle became residence of Thomas P. O’Flahertie of the Lemonfield family, who was married to a daughter of Ulick Burke, in the early 19th century. The castle now lies in ruins but features of the castle can still be seen.
Drumharsna Castle is a five storey tower house known to have been owned by Shane Ballagh in 1577 but believed to have been built much earlier by the Kilkelly family. Throughout the years, the castle survived the Cromwellian invasion and was still in use until the early 20th century. In 1920 however, the castle was occupied by the Black and Tans who caused extensive damage to the castle. The castle has been associated to stories of brutal murders by the Black and Tans. Both brothers, Patrick and Harry Loughnane, members of the Sinn Féin, political party were believed to have been taken to the castle before being shot to death in the nearby woods by the Black and Tans. The castle now lies in ruins.
Dunguaire Castle (aka Dungory)
Dunguaire Castle is a 16th Century fortified tower house which has been restored to it’s past glory. The castle name derives from the legendary king of Connacht, ‘Dun of King Guaire’. The castle is believed to have been built by the Hynes family (Ó hEidhin clan) who were chiefs of Coill Ua bhFiachrach, the district around Kinvara, since 662. In the 17th century the castle passed hands onto the Martyn clan of Galway. They remained in the stronghold until 1924 where it was purchased by Oliver St. John Gogarty, a well known surgeon and writer, who restored the castle. The castle played host to literary greats such as George Bernard Shaw, Lady Gregory, J.M Synge and W.B. Yeats. Furthermore, the castle featured in the 1969 Walt Disney movie, Guns in the Heather, which cast the star Kurt Russell. It hit the screens once more as a depiction of a Scottish castle in the 1979 film North Sea Hijack.
In the 1220’s, Dunmore was given by the De Burghs family to Meilor de Bermingham, where it was held by him and his heir until the 1650’s. In 1225, de Bermingham built his first castle here, however it was burnt to the ground by the songs of the Kings of Connacht, Fichra O’Flynn in 1249 and by Rory O’Connor in 1315. It is believed that the ruins of the current Dunmore castle were probably built after the last burning. The castle was a tower house consisting of four storeys and situated on a motte with the remains of a fortifying wall around it. The castle was believed to have been at one stage taken by Sir Henry Sidney, but it remained in de Bermingham hands until the Cromwellian plantations. The castle although in ruins, is still well preserved with many features of the castle still visible.
Dunsandle Castle is a 15th century castle which was built by the De Burgo (Burke) family. The castle later changed hands to the Daly family. Around the 1650’s, the castle was extended in the form of a manor house. However, by 1791 the castle appeared to lay uninhabited and fell to ruin. The castle has since recently been restored. Dunsandle castle is filled with unique architectural features to include a great hall with tie beams, it’s groin vault construction (which was first exploited by the Romans), an 18th century ice house, a murder hole and remains of a bawn with a defence tower featuring gunloops.
Fartamore Castle was believed to have been a three storey tower house owned by James Brimingham in 1574. Unfortunately there are very little remains with just a portion of the tower wall and a fragment of a bawn wall still in existence. Not many other architectural features have survived. The little known history of Fartamore Castle adds to its mystery.
Feartagar Castle (also known as Jennings Castle) is a four storey tower house built in the 15th century by the notable De Burgos (Burke) family. In 1651, the castle was taken over by Cromwellian forces and Cromwell benefactors inhabited the estate and castle. Eventually the lands and castle fell into the hands of the Blakes of Tuam. As was common at the time, the Blakes built a more comfortable three storey residence adjacent to the castle. It was believed to have been on of the finest structures throughout Galway at the time. The most famous of its landlords was Edward Blake whom created an iron door at the entrance of the castle. After his death in 1886 the lands and house were sold to a John Cannon. The castle now lays in ruins although still remaining well preserved with features such as circular bartizans on its four corners and a machicolation over the entrance door still to be seen.
Fiddaun Castle is a six storey castle, built in 1574, once considered to be the largest castle in all of Ireland due to the amount land that was encompassed within its outer walls. The castle was owned by the O’Shaughnessy family and guarded the western parts of their lands. The castle was forfeited in 1697 when Sir William O’Shaughnessy, who was only fifteen fled to France to fight as a captain in the Jacobite cause and later and later became a Mareschal de Camp in 1734. Fiddaun Castle was continuously inhabited by O’Shaughnessys until 1727. Although now uninhabited and missing it’s top storey the castle is remarkably preserved with many inner features still intact.
Ffrench Castle was a 17th century four storey tower house believed to have been built by the O’Kelly family. The castle passed hands to the Ffrench family where it is recorded the family held the castle in 1683. In fact, there is a dated plaque of 1683 wit the Ffrench family arms in the south wall. The castle was renamed to the Ffrench Castle as a result. Although uninhabited and laying in ruins features such as a machicolation over the east facing entrance can still be seen.
Furmina Castle (aka O’Brien’s Castle)
Situated on the island of Inís Oírr, Furmina Caslte or O’Brien’s Castle as its otherwise known, is believed to have been built in the 14th century. It’s location was key to controlling Galway Bay at the time. It was recorded that in 1582, the castle was taken from the O’Briens by the O’Flaherty’s of Connemara, where it remained occupied by the O’Flaherty’s and others until 1652 when eventually surrendered to Cromwellian forces. It is understood that the castle was partially dismantled in favour of the Arkin Fort on Inis Mór island and fell to ruin and disrepair as a result.
Garbally Castle was a 15th century tower house built by Malachy O’Kelly in 1499. In 1504, the castle was initially destroyed by MacWilliam De Burgo along with two other O’Kelly castles. It was unsure thereafter to the extend of which the castle was restored, however it was noted by Samuel Lewis in 1832 that the castle was once again ‘partially destroyed by Cromwell’ along with another nearby castle in the 17th century. The castle is now in ruins with just the north east section remaining.
Glinsk Castle was the principal residence of Lord of Clonconway, Mac David Burke and was built in the mid 17th century, on the site of an earlier castle. The castle is reputed as being the last castle ever built in Ireland as many lords started to build houses instead of castles from the 17th century onward. The castle which was once surrounded by a bawn (of which there are little remains now), shows some fine architectural features such as its chimney shafts, its mullioned windows and its square towers. The castle fell into ruins after a fire spread within the castle.
Grange East Castle
Unfortunately Grange East Castle has very little recorded history. It is believed that the castle was a stronghold to Walter Bui de Burgo and was built in the 15th century. The castle now lies in ruins with not very much remains.
Hackett Castle (otherwise known as Castlehackett) was originally a two storey tower house built in the 13th century with third and fourth floors built later in the 16th century. The castle was built by a Norman family, the Hacketts, where it bears its name. The Hacketts had pushed the stronghold of the O’Flaherty clan back across the lakes to Connemara. In the 15th century, the castle became occupied by the Kirwans but was later abandoned and uninhabited from 1703, where the Kirwans built a nearby manor house and resided their instead. The castle now lays in ruins.
Isert Kelly Castle
Isert Kelly castle served as the principal seat of the MacHubert Burkes from the early 1400s. The three storey tower house was stronghold to the MacHuberts, later passing hands to the MacRedmonds, both of whom were branches of the De Burgo (Burke) family. The castle is uninhabited but still remains well preserved to this day with many architectural features still to be seen throughout the castle. A project of excavation and discovery is ongoing of the castle which will hopefully bring to light some great history of the castle.
Castlekirk (Hen’s Castle)
Located on a half acre island on Lough Corrib, Castlekirk, or Hen’s Castle as it is otherwise known, was an early 12th century tower house built by the sons of Ruaidrí na Saide Buide and aided by William FitzAldelm. It is believed to be one of the oldest mortared castles in Ireland. In 1225, Odo O’Flaherty was forced to give the castle to Aedh Ua Conchobair, the king of Connacht, by the Lord Justice Sir Edmond Butler. In 1233, the castle was knocked down and rebuilt by Fedlimid, son of Cathal Crobhdearg Ua Conchobair in 1233. Stories told outline that the castle got the name, ‘Hen’s Castle’ from the notable Gráinne Ní Mháille in 1546. Gráinne married Dónal an-Chogaidh O’Flaherty, at the age of 16, who had the nickname ‘the Cock’ due to his agressive nature, and as a result Gráinne was in turn called ‘the Hen’. However when her husband Donal was murdered, Gráinne fought back with fury and took the castle, where from that the castle became known as Hen’s Castle. Other legends told say that the castle was built by a cock and a hen under the magic of a witch, hired by the O’Flaherty family. The castle was occupied as a castle until Cromwellian soldiers took over in 1654. The castle fell into ruin and in later in the 19th century the ruin became further vandalised with its stones being removed to build houses in the area.
Kilclooney Castle was a tower house which was believed to have been used as a bardic school run by the Ó hÚigínn (Higgins) family at some point in it’s history. The castle now lays nearly demolished with just the remains of the first floor still standing.
Killeen Castle is believed to have been a 14th century tower house built by Redmond Burke. It is recorded that in 1586, the castle was held by William and Edmund McWilliam Ffiegh. By the 19th century, it was further recorded that the castle was home to Marcus Blake in 1814. The castle traded hands several times in the 20th century before being extended and made into a family home. Today the castle is a private residence and is in very good condition.
Killimor Castle or manor house, is a three storey house which incorporates a former 15th century medieval tower house of the Daly family. The tower house was converted in phases to the manor house throughout the 18th and 19th century. There is still evidence of the original medieval doorway and other details. The house fell into disrepair but has since been renovated and made into a private residence.
Killure Castle was a two storey tower house. Unfortunately there is little known on the history of the tower, however, although in ruins, many architectural features can be seen such as an east facing entrance, traces of vaulting and a passage in the south wall that probably led to a latrine.
Tullokyne Castle is a five storey tower house believed to have been built in the 16th century. It is said that the castle is to have been built by two sisters who built their castles close together so that they could rant to each other from their own windows. As a result, Tullokyne is also referred to as ‘The Hag’s Castle’. It was recorded as being held by Murtagh O’Connor in 1574. In 1839, it was said that a great storm knocked the other castle while causing considerable damage to Tullokyne. The castle now lies in ruins with only the west wall standing to it’s original height.
Kiltroge Castle is a four storey tower house which was held by John Blake in 1574. Although now in ruins, architectural features such as remains of a spiral staircase, the castle entrance, a guard room and some loops and ogival heads can still be seen.
Lackafinna Castle was a 16th century tower house and was a stronghold of the Earls of Clanricard family. The castle now lies in ruins but some architectural features such as a vaulted third storey can still be seen.
Wallscourt Castle was once the seat of the famous Blake family but now it’s remains just highlight the lower level of the tower with remains of a two storey house adjacent. There is not much further history known about the castle or manor house, adding to the mystery of the ruins.
Lackagh Castle was a five storey tower house built by the De Burgo (Burke) family in the 14th century. The castle was also held by Henry FitzEdmond, a branch of the Burke family. The castle now lies in ruins but some architectural features such as a spiral staircase and a series of small rooms can still be seen.
Lavallyconnor Castle is a four storey castle which seems to have been much altered down throughout the years. Unfortunately the history of the castle is not yet known and, now lying in ruins, there are not too much architectural features to be seen apart from some battlements.
The history of Leitrim Castle is unknown but it was believed to have been a minor Burke fortress. The castle now lies in ruins and is very much covered in ivy.
Lismore Castle was an important O’Madden castle. The castle was a four story tower house. It is unknown as to when the actual castle was built but it is believed it may date back to the late 16th century. Fergus Madden was the last of the Maddens to reside at Lismore castle. He was married to Catherine Madden (alias Donnellan). After Fergus’ death from falling from a horse, his widow, Catherine, later remarried to Richard Burke and claimed Lismore Castle as her dowry. In 1778 the castle had passed hands to the Daly family who resided in the castle. Records show that by the 1890’s the castle was described as ‘in ruins’. Some architectural features of the castle are still visible today.
Longford Castle is believed to originate from the 13th century with its name deriving from the Barony of Longford. The castle was a stronghold and major residence of the O’Madden family. Although now in ruins, there are many architectural features which can still be seen.
Lydacan Castle was a five storey tower house which was held by Mautagh O’Heyne in the late 16th century. The castle later fell to the Lynch family. Although now in ruins, there are many architectural features which can still be seen throughout.
Lynch’s Castle bears the Lynch Family’s Coat of Arms, who were once the most powerful family in Galway, along with the crests of the Henry and the Fitzgerald’s families who also possessed the castle at one point. Today, the four storey castle is the only complete secular medieval building left standing in Galway. Although the exact build date is unknown, it’s believed that the castle originates to the late 15th/early 16th century. A large extension was added to the castle in 1808 and later was heavily altered in 1966 when it was converted into a bank, as it remains today.
Mannin Castle or otherwise known as Ballymannin Castle, was an early tower house of the De Burgo (Burke) family. The castle was believed to have been built in several stages. There is little known in regards the castle which now lies in ruins, however there are still some architectural features such as a spiral staircase and tier of large mural chambers which can be seen.
Menlo Castle (Blake’s Castle)
Menlo Castle or Blake’s Castle as it is otherwise known, is a picturesque ruin of a 16th century castle on the banks of the river Corrib, which was once home to the Blake family, described as the richest family in Galway, who lived there from 1600 to 1910. The castle went through some refurbishments throughout the years to include adding a Jacobean mansion to the old tower house in the late 17th century. In 1910, Menlo Castle was gutted by fire which trapped two servant maids & Miss Ellen, the invalided daughter of the Baronet & Lady Blake. The two servants were forced to jump from the roof of the castle, one dying instantly, the other taken in agony to hospital. Strangely, the body of Miss Ellen Blake was never found.
Merlin Castle (aka Doughiske Castle)
Merlin Castle, or sometimes known as Doughiske Castle, is a three storey 16th century tower house ruin in Galway City. The castle was built for Turlough O’Connor who was one of the last High Kings of Ireland. The castle was inhabited until the mid-19th century. Although now in ruin, the castle remains in relatively good condition. Interestingly, there is a Sheela na Gig which can be seen sitting upside down on a decorated window on the second floor.
Monivea Castle is a former O’Kelly tower house believed to have been built in the early 16th century. The castle was later acquired by the Patrick Fitzrobert Ffrench from John Crosach O’Kelly in 1609, who developed the castle and surrounding lands further. The castle was inhabited until the middle of the 20th century. It now lies in ruins but architectural features such as battlements, its doorway and windows can be seen, adding intrigue and interest to the ruins.
Situated close to the village of Craughwell, Moycola castle was an early hall house, believed to have been built in the 12th century. Unfortunately the history of the castle is unknown and now lies in ruins.
Moylough Castle was a 13th century hall house built by the de Cotterells and de Cogeshales, tenants of firstly the O’Concannons and later the de Birmingham family. The castle ruins consist of three storey’s built throughout of local limestone rubble set in hard whitish lime mortar. The castle now lies in ruins.
Moyode Castle was a 16th century fortified tower house, a stronghold of the Burke family, believed to have been built by MacHubert Burke. The castle was purchased as a ruin by the American historian James Charles Roy in 1969. The tower has undergone a lot of restoration work and has largely been restored bringing it back to it’s former glory.
Moyveela Castle has been identified as an early 15th century fortified tower house, believed to have been built by the Burke family. Records show that the castle was also home to the Browne family throughout the years, with Andrew Browne holding the seat of the castle in 1786. The three storey castle now lies very much in ruins.
Newtown Castle is a large round three storey castle. There is little known about the history of the castle which now lies in ruins. Although in ruins, there are several architectural features which can still be seen through such as doorway, murder hole, vaulted first floor and much more.
Oranmore Castle is an inhabited three storey tower house on the shores of Galway Bay. The castle was believed to have been built in the 15th century on the site of an older castle. The castle was recorded as being occupied by the Earl of Clanricarde, a prominent Norman family, in 1574. In 1643, the castle town revolted and joined the Confederate Irish in 1643, in which the castle was eventually surrendered to the Confederates. The castle later switched hands to the Parliamentarian Sir Charles Coote in 1651, but was eventually restored to the 6th Earl of Clanricarde in 1662. The castle was later held by the Blake family in the late 18th century. The castle eventually fell to ruin and lay in disrepair until 1947 when it was bought by Lady Leslie who restored it to its former glory by 1960’s. The castle is now occupied by artist Leonie King (descendant of the Leslie family) and her husband Alec Finn of the music band De Danaan.
Pallas Castle is a five storey 16th century tower house which was built by the De Burgo (Burke) family. Records show that the castle was held by Jonyck Fitzthomas Burke in 1574, however it was later passed on to the Nugent family, Lords of Westmeath during the Cromwellian times in 1649. The castle remains in good condition, surrounded by a well-preserved bawn wall which is often very rare to find. There are many other architectural features to be seen throughout.
Park Castle (Cooltymurraghy Castle)
Unfortunately there are little remains and history of Park Castle, or Cooltymurraghy Castle as it’s otherwise known, a 15th century tower house stronghold of the O’Kelly family.
Cromwell’s Barracks (Port Island Castle)
Built in 1656, the ruins of the star-shaped Cromwell Fort are situated on the most eastern side of Port Island. It is told that the O’Malley family built a castle on Dun Grainne in the 16th century and Don Bosco, an ally of Grainne Uaile (female chieftain of the O’Malley family) built a castle opposite Dun Grainne where the ruins of Cromwell’s Barracks now stand. Together the two castles control the surrounding waters. In the later years, during the Cromwellian period, a star shaped fort was built as use of barracks to house captured Catholic clergy found guilty of high treason. From here, they waited to be shipped to the West Indies and other remote places. After Charles II was restored to the throne in 1660, the fort was used as part of a defensive strategy and later used by Irish forces during the Jacobite War. The fort now lies in ruins but there are many architectural features still be seen.
Portumna Castle is a 17th century stronghold built by Richard De Burgo (Burke), 4th Earl of Clanricarde, in 1618. It was believed that the castle cost around £10,000 to build and may have been one of the first Renaissance style castles built in Ireland. The castle was forfeited to Henry Cromwell from 1652 to 1661 and later passed hands to William III and Queen Anne. The gardens were added to the aesthetics of the castle in the 18th century along with some minor alterations. In 1826, a disastrous fire broke out and the castle was abandoned as a result. The castle lay derelict and roofless for many years before the it underwent it’s current restoration work under the public works of the state.
Rahaly Castle is a tower house built by the Burke family. The castle has habitable for many years and is now undergoing further restoration work. Unfortunately little is known on the full history of the castle but on a roof arch it is dated 1713 with the initials M.D. and N.S. The eastern part of the castle was built first and contains five stories and a spiral staircase. There are many other architectural features to be seen throughout.
Raruddy Castle is a 15th century tower house, a stronghold to MacHubert Burke family. Unfortunately there is little known as to the history of the castle. The castle now lies in ruins, but some architectural features can be seen.
Rathgorgin Castle was a 13th century tower house built by a Norman family, believed to have been the De Burgo (Burke) family. The castle was understood to have been held at one point by Ulick Burke. Unfortunately there is little further history known of the castle. The castle is almost completely disappears, but some of the ruins are still believed to exist.
Ricks Island Castle
Unfortunately there is little known history about the ruins of an old castle on Ricks Island. It is believed that the castle was built by a Norman family.
Rinville Castle is a fully restored four storey tower house built by the De Burgo (Burke) family. Richard McThomas Oge, a member of the Burke family, is the earliest recorded owner of the castle having held the stronghold in 1574. Under the Act of Settlement in 1681, the castle was granted to Robert Blake of Ardfry. In later years, the castle passed ownership to Philip Lynch at the end of the 17th century and on to Edmond Athy in the early 18th century as part of a marriage dowry to Margaret Lynch, daughter of Philip. The castle remained the property of the Lynch-Athy family until the middle of the 20th century. The castle is fully restored where many original architectural features can be seen.
Rinvyle Castle was a three storey tower house, believed to have been built in the late 13th/early 14th century by the Joyce family but this has been disputed that origins of the castle trace to the O’Flaherty family. Legend has it that there was a wedding taking place of one of the Joyce’s at the castle, when it was interrupted by the O’Flaherty’s, a rival family, and all guests, except one, were massacred. The O’Flaherty’s are believed to took over the castle thereafter. It is understood that Donal O’Flaherty and Grace O’Malley (Granuaile Ni Mhaille) lived in the castle (around 1546), until Donal was eventually murdered and Grace gave up the castle in order to seek revenge. It was recorded that the castle was later occupied by Miles MacTibbot in 1574. Although the castle is now in ruins, some architectural features can still be seen.
Ross Castle was built in 1590 by Robert Martin whose family was one of the “Tribes” from Galway City. The building was the first home for any of the Galway tribes outside the walls of the city. As a result it became known as ‘The ancient home of the Martins of Ross’. In 1770, the castle interior and roof were destroyed by a fire and there were many alterations made in it’s restoration work. By the time the present owners purchased the castle in 1985, it had fallen into complete ruins and it took 15 years for the restoration of the castle. The castle has now been converted into a hotel where many interesting architectural features can be seen.
St. Clerans Castle
St. Clerans Castle is a Georgian manor house which was home to the Burke family and has a history of many famous occupiers. The manor house, which was originally known as Issercleran, is a magnificent two story 18th century house built by the Burkes in 1784 after they abandoned their ancestral castle nearby. Anne de Vere Cole, who became the wife of Neville Chamberlain and encouraged him to enter politics lived in the manor house. It was later the home of Robert O’Hara Burke who became well known in Australia as the leader of the first expedition to cross the continent. The house was also home to the film director John Huston and later his daughter Anjelica. John Huston once described the house as ‘one of the most beautiful houses in all of Ireland’. It is currently residence to the well known talk show host and entertainer, Merv Griffin. The house is a private residence and not open to the public.
Seefin Castle was a four storey tower house believed to have been built in the 15th or 16th century. Records show that the castle was held by Richard MacUllick Burke in 1574. Unfortunately there is little further known about the history of the castle which now lays in ruins. Some architectural features such as a spiral staircase and small chambers can been seen throughout the remains.
Strongfort Castle (Caheradangan Castle)
Strongfort Castle, or Caheradangan Castle as it was otherwise known, is a 15th century tower house built by the Norman De Burgo (Burke) family. Little further history is known about the castle currently. In recent years, it has been restored to it’s former glory and is inhabited once more. There are many features to be seen throughout adding to the intrigue and mystery of the castle. It is occasionally rented out as a holiday home.
Tawnaghmore Castle (Turloughcartron Castle)
Tawnaghmore Castle, or Turloughcartron Castle as it’s otherwise known, was a 14th century subsidiary tower house in the manor of Headford. Records show that the castle was later helf by Moyler MacRichard in 1574. Although now in ruins, features such as a vaulted chambers over the entrance can be seen.
Taylor castle was a four storey 16th century tower house which was formerly known as Ballymcgrath. The Taylor family later settled in the castle from the 17th century. In 1802, the family altered the castle considerably by adding another tower to balance the existing one and inserted a three storey house in between. The castle was inhabited up to the 1930’s where it has since fell to ruin and disrepair.
Terryland Castle, or the ‘Old Castle’ as it’s sometimes referred, was a 13th century castle built by the De Burgo (Burke) family. The castle was a strategic crossing point of the River Corrib. At the time, there was another castle on the opposite side of the river (parts of which also survive). In 1641, Terryland Castle was garrisoned during the rebellion of 1641 and again during the Cromwellian Wars in 1652. It was later defended by joint Irish and French troops against the approaching Williamite Army in 1691. The castle was destroyed by fire in 1961 where it has remained in ruins ever since. In recent years, archaeological digs uncovered human remains and artefacts believed to date back to medieval times.