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Carrickfergus Castle, Carrickfergus
(4.3/5 based on 500+ reviews on the web)
Carrickfergus Castle is a Norman castle in Northern Ireland, situated in the town of Carrickfergus in County Antrim, on the northern shore of Belfast Lough. Besieged in turn by the Scottish, Irish, English and French, the castle played an important military role until 1928 and remains one of the best preserved medieval structures in Northern Ireland. It was strategically useful, with 3/4 of the castle perimeter surrounded by water (although in modern times only 1/3 is surrounded by water due to land reclamation). Today it is maintained by the Northern Ireland Environment Agency as a state care historic monument, at grid ref: J4143 8725.OriginsCarrickfergus was built by John de Courcy in 1177 as his headquarters, after he conquered eastern Ulster in 1177 and ruled as a petty king until 1204, when he was ousted by another Norman adventurer, Hugh de Lacy. Initially de Courcy built the inner ward, a small bailey at the end of the promontory with a high polygonal curtain wall and east gate. It had several buildings, including the great hall. From its strategic position on a rocky promontory, originally almost surrounded by sea, the castle commanded Carrickfergus Bay (later known as Belfast Lough), and the land approaches into the walled town that developed beneath its shadows.
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Plans in Carrickfergus by other users

9 days in Carrickfergus BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES August, kids, relaxing, slow & easy, popular PREFERENCES: August, kids, relaxing ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Slow & easy 49 days in Northern Ireland BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA November, fast-paced, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: November ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Fast-paced 16 days in Belfast, Carrickfergus & Ireland BY A USER FROM CANADA August, culture, relaxing, historic sites, museums, hidden gems PREFERENCES: August, culture, relaxing, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium 13 days in Belfast, County Antrim & Sevier County BY A USER FROM IRELAND November, popular PREFERENCES: November ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 15 days in Northern Ireland BY A USER FROM CANADA May, culture, outdoors, historic sites, museums, hidden gems PREFERENCES: May, culture, outdoors, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium 15 days in Northern Ireland BY A USER FROM THAILAND September, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: September ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 15 days in United Kingdom & Landmannalaugar BY A USER FROM QATAR August, popular PREFERENCES: August ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 5 days in Northern Ireland BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM July, relaxing, shopping, popular PREFERENCES: July, relaxing, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 8 days in County Antrim BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM June, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: June, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 10 days in Sligo & County Antrim BY A USER FROM IRELAND August, teens, culture, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, museums, water activities, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: August, teens, culture, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, museums, water activities ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 13 days in Northern Ireland BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES June, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, museums, hidden gems PREFERENCES: June, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium 17 days in Northern Ireland BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES April, outdoors, historic sites, popular PREFERENCES: April, outdoors, historic sites ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • I was surprised because I really enjoyed this place. The place is full of charm and well kept.
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  • Brilliant place to visit for all the family. Children there today all appeared to be having great fun and I am sure all others would as well. Well maintained and easy access to most parts - many stair...  more »
  • We were travelling north to visit the Giant’s Causeway and came across this lovely old castle dating back to 1177. Had fun exploring all the different Wards and reading the history. Especially enjoyed...  more »
Google
  • Great historical visit with knowledgeable tour guides. A very reasonable entrance fee and there seems to be lots of events throughout the year. The castle itself is well maintained with an interesting history.
  • Very cool castle. Cost to get in is cheap and it can take up a good chunk of time to see the whole thing. Also very informative and well-preserved. There's not much to stop you from gong in without a ticket. Just saying.
  • Absolutely fantastic interactive experience for all ages. Reception staff were excellent and very accommodating. This is a definite must see for visitors and superb value for money. Thank you very much an excellent day
  • Besieged in turn by the Scottish, Irish, English and French, the castle played an important military role until 1928 and remains one of the best preserved medieval structures in Northern Ireland. It was strategically useful, with 3/4 of the castle perimeter surrounded by water (although in modern times only 1/3 is surrounded by water due to land reclamation)
  • Gorgeous views! Well preserved location. Great food nearby!