From castles to cathedrals, we’ve rounded up the 10 most famous landmarks in Ireland.
A landmark is something that distinguishes a famous part of a country or marks a historical event that has become a watershed moment in a nation’s history.
Scattered across Ireland are famous landmarks that tell the island’s story, recount its incredible history, and remind us of why Ireland has become the land that it is today.
Here are the 10 most famous landmarks across Ireland.
10. Rock of Cashel (Tipperary) – St. Patrick’s rock
According to Irish mythology, the Rock of Cashel originated when St. Patrick banished Satan from a cave, leading to the landing of the Rock in Cashel.
The Cathedral was built between 1235 and 1270 and is also known as Cashel of the King’s and St. Patrick’s Rock.
Address: Moor, Cashel, Co. Tipperary
9. Newgrange Tomb – a prehistoric wonder
Situated in the Boyne Valley, the Newgrange Tomb is a 5,200-year-old stone passage, the symbol of Ireland’s Ancient East, and older than the Great Pyramids of Egypt.
It was built by stone-age farmers and is around 85 metres in diameter and 13.5 metres high, with a passage measuring 19 metres, leading to a chamber with three alcoves.
Address: Newgrange, Donore, Co. Meath
8. Blarney Stone and Castle (Cork) – a legendary Irish site
Blarney Castle is the third building to be built on its site, and the current structure was built in 1446 by Dermot McCarthy, King of Munster, and acted as a medieval stronghold.
The site is also home to the Blarney Stone, and legend has it that kissing the stone gives you the gift of eloquence.
Address: Monacnapa, Blarney, Co. Cork, Ireland
7. St. Patrick’s Cathedral (Dublin) – the tallest church in Ireland
Standing as the tallest church in Ireland, St. Patrick’s Cathedral was established in 1171 and is the National Cathedral of the Church of Ireland.
The Cathedral now plays host to a number of national remembrance events and hosted the funeral of two Irish Taoisigh (Prime Ministers): Douglas Hyde in 1949 and Erskine Childers in 1974.
Address: St Patrick’s Close, Wood Quay, Dublin 8, Ireland
6. Titanic Quarter (Belfast) – birthplace of the RMS Titanic
Located in the heart of Belfast, the Titanic Quarter is where the infamous Titanic ship was built, and it now houses Titanic Belfast, a modern, state-of-the-art, Titanic-themed maritime museum.
The site is also the location of the Harland & Wolff cranes (known as Samson and Goliath), the largest free-standing cranes in the world, which dominate the Belfast skyline.
Address: Titanic House, 6 Queens Rd, Belfast BT3 9DT
5. Skellig Islands (Kerry) – an uninhabited escape from the mainland
The Skellig Islands are two breathtaking, rocky and uninhabited islets planted off the southeastern coast of Ireland and in the heart of the Atlantic Ocean.
One of the islets, Skellig Michael, is home to an old Christian monastery that sits atop the rock, representing an Irish Christian tradition of solitude and search for God in it.
Address: Skellig Tours, Bunavalla Pier, Bunavalla, Caherdaniel, Co. Kerry
4. Giant’s Causeway (Antrim) – a stunning natural wonder
The Giant’s Causeway is a remarkable natural construction of 40,000 basalt columns and is Ireland’s first UNESCO World Heritage site.
Irish mythology teaches that the legend of Fionn MacCumhaill built the causeway to challenge Scottish mythological giant Benandonner to a fight.
Address: 44 Causeway Rd, Bushmills BT57 8SU
3. Kilmainham Gaol (Dublin) – an iconic slice of Irish history
One of Dublin’s most iconic historical landmarks, Kilmainham Gaol imprisoned some of the most important figures throughout Irish history, such as Charles Stewart Parnell.
The Gaol is also the site where 15 leaders of the Easter Rising, such as Padraig Pearse, Sean MacDiarmada, and James Connolly, were executed by British authorities throughout May of 1916.
Address: Inchicore Rd, Kilmainham, Dublin 8, D08 RK28, Ireland
2. GPO (Dublin) – headquarters of the 1916 Easter Rising
One of the most famous landmarks in Ireland, especially when it comes to Irish history, is the GPO (General Post Office) in Dublin, the headquarters of the 1916 Easter Rising and the steps upon where Padraig Pearse read aloud the Proclamation of the Irish Republic.
The building was burned to rubble in the fighting, and bullet holes from the Rising can still be seen in the commanding pillars of the building. Today it stands as Ireland’s General Post Office and flies aloft the Irish tricolour.
Address: O’Connell Street Lower, North City, Dublin 1, Ireland
1. Cliffs of Moher (Clare) – awe-inspiring, cascading sea cliffs
Ireland’s most popular tourist attraction and undoubtedly the most famous landmark in Ireland, the Cliffs of Moher are awe-inspiring sea cliffs situated off the southwestern edge of the Burren region in County Clare.
The cliffs span a total of 14 kilometres (8 miles) and reach a maximum height of 214 metres just north of O’Brien’s Tower.
Address: Cliffs of Moher Tourist Information Office, 11 Holland Ct, Lislorkan North, Liscannor, Co. Clare
From naturally striking landscapes to historically significant sites, Ireland is home to many landmarks that shape the country and give the country its deserved title as the greatest country in the world.