Carriganass Castle, Kealkill

#39 of 79 in Historic Sites in County Cork
Castle · Hidden Gem · Landmark
Carriganass Castle is a 16th-century tower house in County Cork. It is situated about 8 kilometres north-east of Bantry, close to the village of Kealkill, in West Cork.
Carriganass Castle was probably built in 1540 by Dermot O'Sullivan, a member of the O'Sullivan Beare sept, who wielded considerable power in West Cork during the 16th century and early 17th century. The castle passed through the hands of various members of the O'Sullivan clan during a period of internal feuding lasting until 1601, when the O'Sullivans united to support Hugh O'Neill at the Battle of Kinsale. Following the English victory at Kinsale, one of the commanders, Sir George Carew, pursued the O'Sullivan forces back to their base on the Beara Peninsula. A small garrison was left at Carriganass while the bulk of the O'Sullivan force returned to Dunboy Castle; Carew's army easily captured Carriganass before continuing on to lay siege to Dunboy. The O'Sullivans were subsequently dispossessed, and the castle later passed into the ownership of the Barretts, who retained it until the 1930s. During their tenure, a new house was built next to the castle, which deteriorated into its present ruinous state.
Carriganass Castle is a typical 16th-century Irish tower house, with a 4-storey tower surrounded by a 14-foot-high outer curtain wall or bawn. The main tower is perched on a rock overhanging the Ouvane river, and has 4 corner turrets. The main entrance to the castle was via a gate in the north wall of the bawn, which had 4 corner towers, the main tower being set into the west wall of the bawn. The castle is now in ruins, with parts of the main tower collapsed.
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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
18 reviews
  • This ruin was interesting... If you're in the area it is worth seeing, if not, I wouldn't go out of your way.  more »
  • Very wet day and just managed to get break in the weather for a very short time. Free to enter and picturesque . Free parking opposite but take care with children as on a bend next to road.  more »
  • A beautiful picturesque place, lovely to walk around
  • Great place to visit and explore

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