Malahide Castle is one of the oldest in Ireland. The estate was founded 1185 for Richard Talbot, a knight who came to Ireland with Henry II during the Norman invasion. The Talbot family would continue to live on the estate until 1975, barring the 1650s during Cromwell's occupation of Ireland (the interlopers were subsequently hanged). Construction on the castle began in the mid-thirteenth century, though the oldest surviving portion is a three-story, keep-like tower from the fourteenth century.
Today the castle serves as a museum. The surrounding town of Malahide has become a commuter suburb of Dublin. Highlights include the Oak Room and the Great Room, which are both magnificently decorated with authentic furniture and adornments. The castle's grounds are a public park, known as Malahide Demesne Regional Park. It covers 270 acres and includes a golf course, sporting facilities, playgrounds, and a restaurant. There are also lovely gardens.
Audio guides are available which recall the castle's history. You can easily spend an entire afternoon exploring the castle and its grounds. Both the castle and the surrounding park are included in the price of admission. It's definitely worth a visit. The castle is easily accessible by car and bus, and is just a short walk from the Malahide DART station.
Location: Malahide, 16km nort of Dublin
Telephone: +353 01 846 2184
Train: Malahide (DART)
Hours: Open daily 10:00-17:00 (opens at 11:00 Sundays from October to March)
€4.70 Children (<12)