Rock of Dunamase, Portlaoise

4.7
#1 of 8 in Things to do in Portlaoise
Geologic Formation Nature / Park
Storm the castle at Rock of Dunamase, a fortress dating back to the 12th century and once pillaged by Vikings. The rock itself stands above a flat plain, which holds the castle ruins and offers picturesque views of the countryside. The structure has passed through many hands, including the Normans and local Irish lords, and local tradition says it was besieged and blown up by the Cromwellian generals in 1651. While there are no records of these events, it is probably the best explanation for the ruins you can explore today. Take care when navigating the castle, as some parts can be dangerous. To visit Rock of Dunamase and other attractions in Portlaoise, use our Portlaoise travel itinerary maker.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
331 reviews
Google
4.8
TripAdvisor
  • The ruins themselves are evocative precisely because they are not preserved but instead are part of the green countryside, with grasses and wildflowers growing all over. A beautiful place to take a br...  more »
  • This is a huge rock formation and ruined castle similar to the rock of cashel. A great place to go for fresh air, interesting walking and ancient ruins. I'd recommend using google maps as apple maps b...  more »
  • We spotted this site on the map and decided to explore. It was quite a find! There are great views from the hilltop and there are large fascinating ruins. It was very quiet and appeared to be out if t...  more »
Google
  • Great for young children. Short walk from carpark. Thankfully undeveloped. Nothing​commercial. Great views across Co Laois for such a low hill.
  • Amazing and under appreciated We were just about the only people there, crazy as it's fantastic. Great history and great to walk amongst the ruins, like a movie scene
  • Google the history of this castle. Off the tourist path- remarkable story tracing back to the last time Ireland was independent. Great picture spots.
  • A very cool and unique experience to be able to explore the ruins of an ancient castle and it's free!
  • Great slice of history in the midlands..worth the trek to the top for the fantastic view of the land.

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