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Rock of Cashel, Cashel

4.3
#1 of 69 in Things to do in County Tipperary
Castle Historic Site
Local mythology claims Rock of Cashel, a limestone hill crowned by a group of medieval buildings, came into existence when Saint Patrick banished Satan from a cave in a nearby mountain. Kings of Munster lived here for several centuries before the Norman invasion, adding structures to fortify their hilltop seat of power. Little structural evidence of that time remains, as the oldest building still standing on the rock is a round tower constructed sometime in the 12th century. Next to the tower stands a Romanesque chapel, Gothic cathedral, and a 15th century castle. Before you stroll here from the town of Cashel, check the website for a downloadable leaflet providing a brief history and a map of this historical site. Before you head to Cashel, plan trip itinerary details with our user-friendly Cashel travel itinerary maker, to make sure you see all that Cashel has to offer, including Rock of Cashel.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
2,826 reviews
Google
4.4
TripAdvisor
  • At 8 euros a person this is not worth it. Luckily, you can eat in town, spend 15, and get a free pass. We ate at O'Neills (yum) and got the free pass. The biggest problem is it's not well ran. You hav...  more »
  • After visiting in Ireland at least another four to five similar locations, with the usual remains of Abbey sometimes heavily restored, always topped by the ubiquitous stalls and torme with tourists, I was pleasantly surprised by this archaeological site, which differs from many others at least in some respects: it's not crowded, it's very quiet, contained in a relatively small space real archaeological jewelry from various eras some of them are perfectly conserved or restored to their original splendour so plausible, and restorations have been in some places especially scholars. All accompanied by the usual Irish friendliness, very spontaneous and immersed in a landscape of other eras. The entrance is free of charge but hotels, shops and other structures against free vouchers. Not bad! Guided tours explain the many aspects, connected with the different eras and different uses of these buildings, some of which are particularly massive and articulated. There is a Romanesque church in sandstone, with very few frescoes, the medieval tower, and the ruins of the Cathedral. The guides seem particularly generous and available. The reconstruction of the House of singers. When you go out, enjoy a beautiful walk to visit the splendid Hore Abbey or Hoare, in the immediate vicinity. You might stumble upon some local artist, for example in pretty little girls running on jigs those features dances with tap dancing.
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  • Impressive castle with interesting tour. Get here early to avoid the tour buses. Stunning views of the Abbey and surrounding countryside.  more »
Google
  • One of the most iconic and beautiful historical ruins in Ireland. It's also one of the most visited so it's key to get here within the first half hour of opening. We did and it made our visit very special. As we were leaving, loads of tour busses of people were arriving, which made it nearly impossible for them to enjoy this magical place. We stayed at a B&B across the street so were also able to walk around the outside of Rock of Cashel at night, which was gorgeous!
  • This stunning "ruin " has been a holy place for centuries! It is beautifully preserved, so you can imagine daily life for the people who lived here through the ages. The remaining stone walls soar to the sky as if in prayer, with no roof to block the divine light (Or rain). The grounds are simply gorgeous, with a classic ancient Celtic cemetery, complete with a crematorium. The gently rolling hills of green are dotted with sheep, and the view of the Abby took my breath away. This was one of my favorite places in Ireland!
  • A piece of ancient history. Its worth a look but last few years there has been so much restoration some parts have been closed off or covered in scaffolding. When I went the only things to look at were the movie which was not very informative and walk around ground as whole interior was closed off.
  • I expect so much more from Irish landmarks. Don't bother going unless you can get on one of their guided tours, last one at 3:30. These buildings have stood for hundreds of years, but not one sign about what you are seeing. The a/v show only hints about this and other sights in the area. 50 c gets you a waste of a map. The staff are all too bored to assist. Even the car park was terrible. It took a half hour to exit because the machine only took exact coins and no bills or credit card so everyone had to scramble to find enough change. An absolute waste of €21 (per couple parking, admission, guide map). The town was nicer to view.
  • What a beautiful castle! We were unable to get inside because we missed the doors closing by 5-minutes, they promptly close at 4:45pm so get there if you can. Even without going in we got amazing pictures from outside and it was a good stop between Cork and Kilkenny. This can be a high tourist spot so try to go first thing in the morning or as late in the day as you can. Even pulling up late there were a few tour buses that came in to unload, only to find out the castle was closed for the day.

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Where to stay in Cashel

Backpackers often seek out the hostel in Cashel, while other visitors tend to opt for a traditional bed and breakfast. If you're looking for a place from which to explore the town's medieval castle grounds, opt for accommodations in the heart of the town itself. You'll find several old guesthouses in the historical city center, and some hotels in this area offer real architectural intrigue. You can also get in touch with your outdoorsy side by pitching a tent at one of the local campgrounds.
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