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Travel Information


A Car Trip to Carlow Castle

If you are planning a tour of Ireland’s historical and cultural attractions, your best option is to hire a car. Car rental gives you excellent access to the museums that are within the city and the archaeological and architectural sites that lie scattered across its countryside. You also save on the prohibitive costs of commercial tours, which follow a stricter itinerary and may not allow you to see some of Ireland’s “secret” treasures, which for those who travel by car, are just a detour away. One of those treasures is Carlow Castle, found in County Carlow. It was one of Ireland’s most impressive Norman Castles. Though only the western wall and two towers still stand today, it fell for the most interesting reason. In 1814, the castle was leased for use as a lunatic asylum. Its owner blasted the walls with gunpowder to enlarge the windows, and succeeded in bringing down two thirds of this historic building. Prior to this “attack” Carlow Castle proudly stood at three stories, with its cylindrical corner towers seen from miles down the road. It may have been one of the earliest examples of the “four-towered keep” in the British Isles. The French influence is very clear, as seen from the Nemours (Seine-et-Marne) built between 1160 and 1180. The castle passed through several owners, including the Earls of Norfolk, James FitzGerald in 1494, Silken Thomas in 1535, and down through several different lords before being bought by Earl of Thomond in 1616. The Confederates captured it in 1642, but it was returned to Thomond after being liberated by Ireton in 1650. To travel to Carlow Castle by car, take the access through Corcoran's Mineral Water factory. It is only open on weekdays to schedule your car tours accordingly. To rent a car to take a car trip to Cahir Castle, you can approach a carhire agency in any of Ireland’s airports or major cities.