Guide to Famous Landmarks in Ireland

Explore These 37 Breathtaking Landmarks in Ireland That’s Totally Worth Your Time

Chances are, when we were all kids, we dreamt of being a prince or princess living in a castle with some superpower to defeat villains attacking our imaginary kingdoms. Now that we’re adults, who’s there to stop us from making these dreams come true?

Ireland is the perfect place to live out your royal or medieval fantasies with its ancient castles, towering cliffs, and breathtaking views that seem like a page from a storybook. 

In this article, we’ll unveil the must-see landmarks in Ireland. So, let’s explore these incredible sights and get ready to be swept away by the real magic of Ireland!

1. The Cliffs of Moher


Address: Lislorkan North, Co. Clare, Ireland

Contact details: +353657086141

Operating hours: 24/7

The Cliffs of Moher are a series of sea cliffs located on the western edge of Ireland, in County Clare. The sheer scale of the cliffs is breathtaking, and the views of the Atlantic Ocean from the top are simply stunning.

The Cliffs of Moher are also home to various wildlife, including puffins, razorbills, and guillemots. These seabirds can be seen nesting on the cliffs and soaring through the air.

2. Rock of Cashel


Address: St. Patrick Rock, Cashel, Co. Tipperary, Ireland

Contact details: +3536261437

Operating hours: 9:00 AM to 4:45 PM

The Rock of Cashel, also known as Cashel of the Kings and St. Patrick’s Rock, is a complex of medieval buildings atop a dramatic limestone outcrop. It was a seat of power for centuries of the Kings of Munster before transforming into a religious center.

Legend tells of St. Patrick himself converting the King of Munster on this very spot, while another claims the Rock was a piece bitten off a mountain by the Devil and spat out in its current location.

3. Monasterboice High Crosses


Address: Newtown Monasterboice, Co. Louth, Ireland

Operating hours: 24/7

The Monasterboice High Crosses, crafted around 1,000 years ago, are some of the early medieval period’s greatest artistic and spiritual expressions. There are three high crosses at Monasterboice, but Muiredach’s High Cross steals the show. 

Nicknamed the South Cross, it stands 5.5 meters tall and is regarded as the finest high cross in Ireland. The intricate carvings on its surface depict biblical scenes from the Old and New Testaments.

4. Newgrange Tomb


Address: Newgrange, Donore, Co. Meath, Ireland

Contact details: +353419880300

The Newgrange Tomb is a magnificent monument that predates Stonehenge and the Egyptian pyramids. Built around 3200 BC by a Neolithic farming community, It is a passage tomb—a large mound containing a stone passage leading to a burial chamber.

This UNESCO World Heritage Site is a circular mound made of hundreds of stones. The impressive facade features white quartz cobblestones, while large curb stones ring the mound and are decorated with megalithic art.

5. The Skellig Islands


Address: County Kerry, Ireland

Contact details: +353 (0)87 9010994

The Skellig Islands are a pair of remote islands located about eight miles off the coast of County Kerry, Ireland.  Skellig Michael, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and an early Christian monastery is the more oversized and famous island.

In Star Wars: The Force Awakens and Star Wars: The Last Jedi movies, Skellig Michael was the location for Luke Skywalker’s Jedi temple. This brought a surge of popularity to the island, attracting many fans to see the filming location.

6. The Giants Causeway


Address: Bushmills BT57 8SU, United Kingdom

Contact details: +442820731855

The Giant’s Causeway is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a geological wonder of around 40,000 interlocking basalt columns. It was formed by an ancient volcanic eruption millions of years ago.

Most of the columns are hexagonal, like a honeycomb, though some have four, five, or even eight sides. The tallest columns reach an impressive 39 feet, creating a natural stairway that leads from the cliffs down to the ocean.

7. Benbulben 

Address: Cloyragh, Co. Sligo, Ireland

Nicknamed “Ireland’s Table Mountain” for its flat summit and cliffs, Benbulben is a geological marvel formed over 320 million years ago by glaciers; Benbulben’s limestone base holds fossils of ancient sea creatures. 

Legend tells tales of mythical heroes like Cu Chulainn, who trained on its slopes, and Diarmuid and Grainne, who sought refuge on its flanks. The mountain’s distinctive profile is said to resemble a sleeping giant, adding to its air of mystery.

8. Christ Church Cathedral


Address: Christchurch Pl, Wood Quay, Dublin 8, Ireland

Contact details: +35316778099

Operating hours: 9:00 AM to 3:00 PM

Christ Church Cathedral, formerly known as The Cathedral of the Holy Trinity, is the elder of Dublin’s two medieval cathedrals. It has been a place of worship and pilgrimage for nearly 1,000 years, and its rich history blends Viking and Norman influences.

One of its most memorable features is the crypt, the largest cathedral crypt in Britain and Ireland. Extensively renovated in the early 2000s, it now houses the “Treasures of Christ Church” exhibition, showcasing religious artifacts and manuscripts.

9. Dun Briste


Address: Milltown, Co. Mayo, Ireland

Operating hours: 24/7

Dun Briste, which translates to “Broken Fort” in Gaelic, is a dramatic natural wonder on Ireland’s west coast. This impressive sea stack stands roughly 45 meters tall and 80 meters from the shore, looking like a giant rock finger jutting out into the Atlantic Ocean. 

Legend says St. Patrick himself banished all the snakes in Ireland to this very spot, forever ridding the mainland of these slithering creatures. Today, Dun Briste is a haven for wildlife, particularly seabirds, which makes it a paradise for birdwatchers. 

10. Slieve League 


Address: Slieve League Ave, Cappagh, Teelin, Co. Donegal, Ireland

Operating hours: 24/7

Slieve League, also known as Sliabh Liag in Irish, is a dramatic mountain range perched on the rugged coastline of County Donegal. At a staggering 601 meters (1,972 feet), it is the highest sea cliff in Ireland.

Look out for the remains of an early Christian monastic settlement, such as chapels and beehive huts. The area is believed to have spiritual significance even before Christianity arrived in Ireland, and ancient stone structures stand as testaments to the past.

11. The Burren 


Address: Ballyryan, Co. Clare, Ireland

Operating hours: 24/7

Often described as a “lunar landscape,” The Burren is a stark yet beautiful region dominated by exposed, fissured bedrock stretching for miles. This unique ecosystem is a karst landscape, meaning the underlying limestone has been dissolved by water.

The Burren is a botanist’s paradise, with Arctic and alpine plants clinging to the rocky crevices and vibrant wildflowers blooming in the cracks. This biodiversity also extends to fauna, with rare butterflies, birds of prey, and even wild orchids finding refuge.

12. Kylemore Abbey


Address: Pollacappul, Co. Galway, Ireland

Contact details: +3539552014

Operating hours: 10:00 AM to 5:30 AM

Initially built in the 1860s as a romantic gesture by Mitchell Henry for his wife Margaret, Kylemore Abbey began as Kylemore Castle. This stunning Gothic Revival building overlooks a lake, reflecting its grand features on the water’s surface.

Tragedy struck when Margaret passed away shortly after the castle’s completion. In 1920, Kylemore found a new chapter when Benedictine nuns fleeing World War I arrived and transformed the castle into a monastery.

13. Hook Lighthouse 


Address: Hook Head, Churchtown, Co. Wexford, Ireland

Contact details: +35351397055

Operating hours: 9:30 AM to 5:00 PM

Built around 800 years ago, Hook Lighthouse is the second-oldest operating lighthouse in the world. This medieval marvel, constructed from limestone and featuring walls up to 4 meters thick, has withstood the test of time and harsh coasts.

Initially, monks tended a fire atop the tower to warn passing ships of the treacherous rocks below. The current lighthouse utilizes a more modern Fresnel lens system, but its rich past is still palpable within its ancient walls. 

14. Jerpoint Abbey 


Address: Jockeyhall, Thomastown, Co. Kilkenny, R95 P523, Ireland

Contact details: +353567724623

Operating hours: 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM

Founded in the 12th century, Jerpoint Abbey flourished as a Cistercian monastery for centuries before succumbing to the Dissolution of the Monasteries by King Henry VIII. Today, it is a testament to the Cistercian order’s architectural prowess.

Jerpoint Abbey’s fame claim lies in its exquisite stone carvings collection, from the detailed puppets crafted by the O’Tunney school to the intriguing depiction of two 13th-century knights.

15. Croagh Patrick 


Address: Glaspatrick, Co. Mayo, Ireland

Croagh Patrick, nicknamed “The Reek,” is a majestic mountain towering over County Mayo, Ireland. Reaching 2,507 feet, its pyramid-shaped peak dominates the landscape, visible for miles.  

Legend says St. Patrick fasted and prayed for 40 days on the summit, driving away demons with his faith. This pilgrimage tradition continues today, with thousands climbing the mountain each year on the last Sunday in July.

16. Muckross Abbey 

Address: Muckross, Co. Kerry, Ireland

Operating hours: 24/7

Founded in the mid-15th century by Donal McCarthy Mór, Muckross Abbey was a Franciscan friary known for their strict adherence to vows of poverty and austerity. This is reflected in the abbey’s architecture – unadorned yet sturdy.

The abbey served as a spiritual sanctuary and burial ground for Gaelic chieftains and prominent poets. However, the friary also faced raids and destruction, notably during the 16th-century Dissolution of the Monasteries and the Cromwellian wars.

17. Mizen Head 


Address: Mizen Road, Cloghane, Goleen, Co. Cork, P81 NY52, Ireland

Contact details: +3532835115

Operating hours: 10:30 AM to 5:00 PM

Mizen Head is a dramatic peninsula that juts into the wild Atlantic Ocean. Often referred to as “Ireland’s teardrop,” it was the last sight of home many emigrants saw before departing for foreign shores.

The star attraction here is the Mizen Head Signal Station, a historic complex that has played a vital role in maritime safety for over a century. Built in the late 19th century, the station served as a lookout point, warning ships of the treacherous rocks.

18. King John’s Castle 


Address: Nicholas St, Englishtown, Limerick, V94 FX25, Ireland

Contact details: +35361370501

Operating hours: 9:30 AM to 6:00 PM

Though the site dates back to Viking settlements in the 10th century, King John’s Castle owes its structure and namesake to King John of England. Construction began around 1200 and was completed a decade later, solidifying Norman’s regional control.

King John’s Castle boasts an interactive exhibition space where visitors can delve into the castle’s history and city, from Viking raids to medieval battles and sieges. The exhibits come alive with multimedia displays.

19. The Guinness Storehouse 


Address: St. James’s Gate, Dublin 8, D08 VF8H, Ireland

Contact details: +35314084800

Operating hours: 9:30 AM to 5:00 PM

Housed in a giant, The Guinness Storehouse is a seven-story building originally a fermentation plant from 1904. Its design, with a steel frame and red-brick exterior, and sheer size make it a prominent feature of the Dublin skyline.

Inside, the exhibits showcase the brewing process, the advertising campaigns that made Guinness a household name, and the brewery’s vital role in Dublin’s economy.  

20. Glendalough Monastic Site 


Address: Sevenchurches Or Camaderry, Glendalough, Co. Wicklow, Ireland

Contact details: +35340445325

Operating hours: 24/7

Glendalough Monastic Site is a treasure trove of early Christian history and breathtaking scenery. Founded in the 6th century by St. Kevin, the site blossomed into a prominent monastic city, attracting pilgrims and scholars for centuries. 

The monastic city comprises remarkably preserved buildings, including the iconic round tower. Other noteworthy structures include St. Kevin’s Church, an example of Romanesque architecture, and the mysterious St. Kevin’s Bed.

21. Carrauntoohil 

Address: Coomcallee, Co. Kerry, Ireland

Carrauntoohil, Ireland’s crown jewel, is the highest peak in Ireland, part of the MacGillycuddy’s Reeks mountain range. As you conquer the challenging terrain, you’ll be treated to views of emerald valleys, glacial lakes, and rugged mountain ranges. 

At the summit, a large cross erected in 1976 is a powerful symbol of faith and a reminder to preserve this natural beauty for future generations.

22. Fanad Lighthouse 


Address: Fanad Head, Shannagh, Co. Donegal, Ireland

Contact details: +353838091199

The Fanad Lighthouse stands as a sentinel, guiding ships safely into Lough Swilly for over two centuries. It was built in 1817 following a tragic shipwreck and boasted a classic cylindrical tower design with a whitewashed exterior and red railing.

It’s a testament to the ingenuity of Irish civil engineering and serves as a reminder of the dangerous conditions faced by sailors in the past. Fanad Lighthouse has been lovingly restored and transformed into a premier visitor destination.  

23. The Free Derry Corner 

Address: Lecky Rd, Glenfada Park, Londonderry BT48 9DR, United Kingdom

Operating hours: 24/7

The heart of Free Derry Corner is a large, free-standing gable wall. In 1969, the iconic inscription “You Are Now Entering Free Derry” was scrawled upon it, declaring the Bogside a self-proclaimed autonomous nationalist area. 

This act of defiance arose after a police raid ignited clashes between residents and authorities. The residents erected barricades and held the area for several days, a pivotal moment in the Northern Ireland conflict.

24. The Deck of Cards Houses

Address: 1-23 West View, Ballyvoloon, Cobh, Co. Cork, P24 H598, Ireland

Operating hours: 24/7

Nestled in Cobh, County Cork, is a unique landmark that has become an internet sensation—The Deck of Cards. It’s a row of terraced houses painted in vibrant colors. 

The brightly colored houses stand out against the backdrop of the scenic Cobh harbor and the imposing St. Coleman’s Cathedral. The origin of the colorful paint job is unclear, but some believe it began with a single homeowner and spread to the entire terrace.

25. Rock of Dunamase 


Address: Park Or Dunamase, Dunamaise, Co. Laois, Ireland

Contact details: +353578664129

Operating hours: 24/7

The Rock of Dunamase, a towering limestone outcrop in County Laois, boasts the ruins of Dunamase Castle, a formidable defensive structure dating back to the early Hiberno-Norman period. 

After the arrival of the Anglo-Normans in Ireland during the 12th century, Dunamase transformed into an essential Norman fortification. The castle even became part of the dowry of Aoife, daughter of an Irish king, when she married a Norman conqueror.

26. Glencar Waterfall 


Address: Largandoon, Glencar, Co. Leitrim, Ireland

Contact details: +353719161201

Operating hours: 24/7

Glencar Waterfall is a cascading wonder that has captivated hearts for centuries. Reaching 50 feet, the waterfall tumbles down in tiers, creating a mesmerizing spectacle. 

What makes Glencar Waterfall truly special is its connection to Ireland’s literary heritage. The renowned poet William Butler Yeats found inspiration in the waterfall’s beauty and incorporated it into his famous poem, “The Stolen Child.” 

27. Dun Aonghasa 

Address: Inishmore, Aran Islands, Co. Galway, H91 YT20, Ireland

Contact details: +3539961008

Operating hours: 9:30 AM to 4:00 PM

Dún Aonghasa is a prehistoric stone fort perched dramatically on the edge of a 100-meter-high cliff on Inis Mór, the largest of Ireland’s Aran Islands. Nicknamed “Fort of Aonghas,” its name might be linked to the pre-Christian Irish god of the same name.

Dún Aonghasa is the most renowned of several hill forts scattered throughout the Aran Islands. It is estimated to be over 3,000 years old and encompasses over 14 acres. This ancient structure consists of three massive drystone defense walls built without mortar. 

28. Sean’s Bar 


Address: 13 Main St, Athlone And Bigmeadow, Athlone, Co. Westmeath, N37 DW76, Ireland

Contact details: +353906492358

Operating hours: 10:30 AM to 12:30 AM

Sean’s Bar holds the prestigious title of the oldest pub in Ireland, with claims dating back to 900 AD. The low-ceilinged interior, with its worn wooden beams and turf fire crackling in the hearth, exudes a rustic charm that transports you to a bygone era. 

The pub boasts a section of its original wattle and daub wall, a primitive building technique using woven branches and mud, that was unearthed during renovations.  This tangible history provides a glimpse into the pub’s ancient origins.

29. Reginald’s Tower 


Address: The Quay, Waterford, Ireland

Contact details: +35351304220

Operating hours: 9:30 AM to 4:45 PM

Reginald’s Tower is a magnificent structure boasting a rich history and the title of Ireland’s oldest civic building. Vikings erected the first iteration of the tower sometime after 914, making it a cornerstone of their settlement and the Viking Triangle district.

The tower has weathered numerous wars, sieges, and societal changes,  enduring as a testament to the city’s enduring spirit.  For over 800 years, it has been a focal point and a constant presence, serving many purposes and witnessing the city’s evolution.

30. The Dunbrody Famine Ship 


Address: New Ross, Co. Wexford, Y34 A786, Ireland

Contact details: +35351425239

Operating hours: 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM

The Dunbrody Famine Ship is a meticulous reproduction of an 1840s emigrant vessel. Stepping aboard this ship is like stepping back in time, a powerful reminder of the struggles and sacrifices of those who fled Ireland during the Great Famine.

Costumed interpreters bring the history to life, acting out the roles of passengers and crew. Their stories vividly depict the unsanitary conditions endured by emigrants, a stark contrast to the more comfortable quarters enjoyed by wealthier cabin passengers.

31. Dun Chaoin Pier 

Address: Ballyickeen Commons, Co. Kerry, Ireland

Contact details: +353852505202

Operating hours: 24/7

Dun Chaoin Pier, also known as Ce Dhún Chaoin, boasts a dramatic coastal location synonymous with Irish beauty. The pier juts out from a secluded bay framed by towering, craggy cliffs. 

What makes Dun Chaoin Pier truly special is its role as the gateway to the Blasket Islands. Ferries depart seasonally from here, carrying visitors across the waves to explore this remote archipelago. 

32. Birr Castle 


Address: Townparks, Birr, Co. Offaly, Ireland

Contact details: +353579120336

Operating hours: 9:00 AM to 5:30 PM

Birr Castle is a captivating blend of history, science, and scenic beauty in the heart of Ireland’s County Offaly. While the grand residence is generally off-limits to the public, its sprawling demesne of over 120 acres offers a treasure trove for visitors.

The actual crown jewel of Birr Castle’s demesne is the Leviathan of Parsonstown, better known as the Birr telescope. This engineering leviathan was once the world’s largest reflecting telescope for over 70 years.

33. Blarney Stone and Castle 


Address: Blarney, Cork, Ireland

Contact details: +353214385252

Operating hours: 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM

Blarney Castle is a medieval stronghold shrouded in legend and charm. Built nearly 600 years ago, the castle boasts a storied past and captivating architecture; however, the true crown jewel of Blarney Castle is the Blarney Stone.

Legend whispers that kissing the Blarney Stone bestows the gift of eloquence or the “gift of the gab.” Over centuries, countless world leaders, literary giants, and even Hollywood stars have partaken in this unique ritual.

34. St. Patrick’s Cathedral 


Address: St Patrick’s Close, Dublin, D08 H6X3, Ireland

Contact details: +35314539472

Operating hours: 9:30 AM to 5:00 PM

St. Patrick’s Cathedral, a towering presence in Dublin, Ireland, is a national treasure boasting a rich history and stunning architecture. Founded in 1191, it’s one of the few remaining medieval structures in Dublin and the largest cathedral in the country.  

Beyond its architectural beauty, St. Patrick’s Cathedral is a vibrant center of culture and tradition. The cathedral choir, one of the oldest in Ireland, performs daily during school term, filling the space with heavenly music. 

35. Titanic Quarter


Address: Titanic House, 6 Queens Rd, Belfast BT3 9DT, United Kingdom

Contact details: +442890766300

Operating hours: Monday to Friday – 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM

The Titanic Quarter is a large-scale waterfront regeneration project in Belfast, Northern Ireland that pays homage to the city’s maritime history and its most famous product: the RMS Titanic.

Here, you’ll find restored historic landmarks like the Titanic Slipways, where the Titanic was launched, alongside modern attractions like Titanic Belfast, the world’s largest Titanic visitor experience.

36. Kilmainham Gaol 


Address: Inchicore Rd, Kilmainham, Dublin 8, D08 RK28, Ireland

Contact details: +35314535984

Operating hours: 9:30 AM to 5:30 PM

Kilmainham Gaol, a former prison turned museum in Dublin, Ireland, is a powerful symbol of Ireland’s struggle for independence. Opened in 1796, the imposing gaol housed common criminals and political prisoners throughout history.

Rebels from the 1798 rebellion, the 1803 rebellion, and the Fenian movement were all incarcerated here. Most notably, the leaders of the 1916 Easter Rising were imprisoned and executed by firing squad within the prison walls.  

37. General Post Office Dublin


Address: O’Connell Street Lower, North City, Dublin 1, D01 F5P2, Ireland

Contact details: +35317057600

Operating hours: 8:30 AM to 6:00 PM

The General Post Office (GPO) in Dublin is a landmark rich in both history and function.  Located prominently on O’Connell Street, the GPO is not just Dublin’s main post office but also a significant symbol of Irish independence.

The building gained immense historical significance during the 1916 Easter Rising when it became the headquarters for the Irish rebels. The GPO was heavily damaged in the ensuing conflict, with only the entrance and facade remaining.