Over the years, I have seen countless castles and stately homes throughout the United Kingdom and Europe. Although each castle experience was different to each other, Bunratty Castle in County Clare, Ireland was quite special. It might have been that Bunratty was not over the top and I really loved its simplicity.
Bunratty Castle was constructed in 1525 and the present structure is the last of four castles that were originally built on this site. Interestingly enough, the site of Bunratty Castle was primarily first a Viking trading camp in 970.
Today the castle has a multi-generational folk park, a tea house and a world famous medieval banquet dinner. With your admission you get access not only to the greatly restored castle but the charming Folk Park, which is fun for all ages. In order to get to the castle you will walk down shaded paths, passing farm animals and village houses.
I could not get enough of the baby goat or was it a pigmy goat? Whichever, it was super adorable and sweet that I wanted to put him in my pocket and take him home. Bunratty has done a nice job with the Folk Park and I was impressed. It was both relaxing and cheerful.
Bunratty’s Folk Park also has a couple of eating establishments but my favorite was the “Tea Room”. The tea room was set in charming white single story cottage with a traditional thatched roof. The inside was friendly and comfortable, with checkered tablecloths and a homespun air to it.
The Tea Room is a casual self serve café, as you carry your tray from the counter to the table. I loved that the tea and cakes were served on very cute toile style plates, one of my favorite patterns. For my cuppa, I had the ‘Afternoon Tea’ blend along with a little slice of carrot cake and a berry scone. I was definatley hungry and having a place for a spot of tea made my day better, although it was going well from the start!
Bunratty Castle is located in County Clare, which is on the west coast of Ireland. The closest main city is Limerick. The Castle is very easy to get to from Limerick by bus, if you do not want to drive. You may either take the red or green bus from Limerick and it only takes about 30-40 minutes.
- The red bus (Bus Eireann) leaves from the Central Bus station, make sure to ask an attendant which platform it leaves from.
- The Green Bus (Dublin Coach) has various stops throughout but you can catch it originally from Limerick Arthur’s Quay.
➡ For visiting information, please visit- Bunratty Castle and Folk Park
Interior of Bunratty Castle
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