Thoor Ballylee - Yeats Museum, Gort

(3.6/5 based on 40+ reviews on the web)
Thoor Ballylee Castle is a fortified, 15th century Hiberno-Norman tower house built by the septs de Burgo, or Burke, near the town of Gort in County Galway, Ireland. It is also known as Yeats' Tower because it was once owned and inhabited by the poet William Butler Yeats.HistoryThe castle was built in the 15th century and originally formed part of the huge estates of the Earls of Clanrickarde, from the de Burgo or Burke family.The nearby four-arched bridge dates to around 1825. In 1837, the Carrig family was recorded as living in the castle. At the time of Griffith's Valuation, Patrick Carrick was leasing a herd's house, castle and land at Ballylee, barony of Kiltartan, from William Henry Gregory. At the time, the property was valued at £5.In the early 1900s, the castle/tower was still owned by the Gregory family and became part of nearby Coole Estate, home of Lady Augusta Gregory, Yeats’ lifelong friend. On the estate, Coole House, where Lady Gregory lived, was the centre for meetings for the Irish literary group, a group composed of a great number of preeminent figures of the day. Near this tower, in Coole Park, began the Irish Literary Revival.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • We visited Thoor Ballylee in late October when it was actually in the process of closing for the season. Fortunately the director, Rena McAllen, was kind of enough to allow us to walk up the various f...  more »
  • Is an enchanted place, Faerie. The walls of the Tower humid and cold halls issue a centenary lived by poet yeats and his family. This is a must for anyone who knows the author's work (particularly the tower) but also for those who simply want to isolate themselves in a magical place made of Green Brook and Ivy, silence ...
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  • After many, many visits to the Tower, we eventually got to have a 'lovely cup of tea and home made bread' with Toni, the volunteer staff member who was there on the day we called. She was so, so helpf...  more »
Google
  • Really pleased to see this place open to the public. Excellent displays. Minimally dressed. Admission includes hot drinks and log fire which is most welcome. Highly recommend this visit. Part of a literary heritage trail if you want to make a day of it.
  • Ooo, what a surprise magical experience here. I was here for a drama concert themed on the story of Yeats' Women. The visitor's area is large and informative and great for a concert. Terrific warm acoustics. The tower worth exploring, especially the seance room. The grounds area, though small is very postcard picturesque. Lovely river and bridge. This is a must visit if in the area.
  • It doesn't seem to be open at the moment and the area around the tower is a little rough in the aftermath of the recent flooding in the area. But it's still a beautifully peaceful area to wander about.