Bunratty Castle & Folk Park is a major County Clare attraction for visitors of all ages. Delve into the history of one of Ireland’s most authentic medieval castles. Travel back to the 1800s while visiting recreations of rural dwellings, pubs, shops and workshops. At Bunratty Caste & Folk Park, be part of lively folk parties and themed dinners, celebrating the traditions of the Middle Ages.
A great place to start your visit is at the 15th-century Bunratty Castle. Built by the noble MacNamara family in 1425 and restored to its original splendor in 1954, the castle stands on a 10th-century Viking trading site. Admire the magnificent ceremonial halls, visit the dungeon and walk on the battlements. Spot antique furniture, portraits, tapestries and other artifacts from the 15th and 16th centuries, which form part of the Bunratty Collection.
Stroll around the 26-acre (11-hectare) Folk Park to see a slice of Ireland’s rural customs. Discover a collection of over 30 buildings, including grocery stores, humble abodes and tradesmen’s studios. Stroll along the village street, browse the shops and have a drink in a traditional pub. Learn about the lifestyle of a bygone era while chatting to costumed characters.
Don’t miss the Bunratty Walled Garden, attached to the Georgian-style mansion Bunratty House. Established in the early 1800s, it served as a kitchen garden. Appreciate the views toward the River Shannon Estuary.
Time your visit to coincide with evening events. Feast on plates piled high with meat at the year-round medieval banquets. Watch performances of typical Irish folk dancing from April to October.
Located in the village of Bunratty, the castle is about a 20-minute drive west of Limerick. Public buses link the attraction with both Limerick and Shannon. Park in front of the attraction’s main entrance.
Bunratty Castle & Folk Park is open daily, except for select public holidays, and has an admission fee. Take a guided tour of the castle and Bunratty Collection given by knowledgeable guides. Ask at the reception area for more details.