Information Bunratty Ireland
Within fifty years, the population had declined, in large part due to the Irish Famine. The Irish government came to its rescue in the 1950s, and extensive renovation began on Bunratty Castle. Many of the buildings today are of the period that pre-dates the Famine, when Bunratty was a successful centre of commerce, and it is still being renovated to this day, with restaurants and shops undergoing construction work that enhances the period detail. Perhaps an attempt to reclaim past glories? Bunratty – in South County Clare – now has a folk park, a reconstructed nineteenth century Irish village set over 25 acres of space. Bunratty now depends extensively on the tourism sector rather than the trades at which it once excelled. It was a big draw for visitors from the States since renovations began. The period detail may seem a little gimmicky during the tourist season, but during less busy periods, the atmosphere in the folk park is enhanced by the tradesmen and their apprentices, blacksmiths and weavers, performing their tasks. Bunratty Castle is the feature that is most impressive and authentic in the folk park. It is well restored. However, it was first built by the McNamara clan in the mid fifteenth century. In keeping with the folk park theme, it is also host to nightly medieval banquets, featuring finger food provided by waitresses dressed in period costume (as much as you can eat, as it happens), music provided by minstrels and period drinks such as mead. Bunratty Castle and the associated folk park are worth a visit for those in large parties who are up for a bit of fun.
Attractions Bunratty Ireland
Ailwee Cave - Ballyvaughan
Located near Ballyvaughan, with its stalactites and stalagmites, the Aillwee Cave beneath the Burren has become one of Irelands leading attractions. An essential part of a visit to the Burren, it affords the opportunity to travel through beautiful caverns, over bridged chasms and under weird formations.
Biddy Early Brewery - Inagh
Located at Inagh, just 10 mile from Ennis on the Lahinch Road. Ireland's first pub-brewery is named after a Clare woman by the name of Biddy Early, who was renowned for her magical powers in the 1800s. Since it's opening in 1995 the brewery has continued to produce a unique selection of hand crafted beers in memory of the great woman. These include Black Biddy, Red Biddy, Blonde Biddy and Real Biddy.
Bunratty Castle and Folk Park - Bunratty
One of Irelands top visitor attractions, Bunratty Castle is the most complete and authentic medieval castle in the country. Built in 1425, it was faithfully restored in 1954 and has furnishings and tapestries which capture the mood and style of the times. The Folk Park, set in 26 acres, recreates nineteenth century Ireland. The Park features include a recreated village street, eight farmhouses, a watermill, blacksmiths forge, Macs pub and restaurant and a display of nineteenth century agricultural machinery.
Cliffs of Moher - Lahinch
Located just north of Lahinch on the coast of West Clare, are the Cliffs of Moher. Natural ramparts against the might of the Atlantic, they rise in places to over 215m and stretch for almost 8km.
Corofin Heritage Museum - Corofin
This award winning Heritage Museum is housed in what was once Saint Catherine's Church, which was built in 1718 by a cousin of Queen Anne. Its main theme, 'Ireland West 1800 - 1860' portrays a traumatic period of Irish history under the headings of 'Lan d'Tenure', 'The Famine', 'Emigration', 'Education', 'Irish Language and Music' and others.