Ardgillan Castle and Demesne, Co. Dublin
Built by Dean Robert Taylor in 1738, this fine 18th century country-manor house is surrounded by 80ha of woodlands and gardens. It overlooks the sea 30km north of Dublin city.
Ardress House and Garden, Co. Armagh
Originally a 17th century modest farmhouse, it was enlarged and redeveloped into an elegant manor house during the 18th century by the architect George Ensor. The house is surrounded by 100 acres of lovely areas of woodland. A working farmyard contains among other items a piggery, blacksmith's shop, chicken houses, a harness room and a well in the middle of the yard.
Avondale House and Forest Park, Co. Wicklow
It is the birthplace and home of Charles Stewart Parnell one of the greatest political leaders of Irish history. Surrounded by hundreds of acres of beautiful natural forest with outdoor walks, it is a must for nature lovers and those interested in Irish heritage.
Ballynahinch Castle Hotel and Gardens, Co. Galway
Built in the 1750's by the wealthy Martin Family, it was originally home to the "ferocious" O'Flaherty clan. It was once the home of Grace O'Malley, pirate queen of Connaught. The castle is today well known as a 4-star high-end hotel with a focus on fly fishing for salmon and sea trout.
Bantry House and Gardens, Co. Cork
Bantry House is a theatrical place, full of drama and character. Standing at the foot of a steep terraced garden, it commands incomparable views across the waters of Bantry Bay to Whiddy Island and the Caha Mountains beyond. Its magnificent setting, like a Claude Lorraine painting, is matched by the many treasures of its interior - exquisite French furniture, tapestries and objets d'art - which give this remote Irish house the air of a continental baroque palace.
Barmeath Castle and Garden, Co. Louth
It has been the home of the Bellew family for over 400 years. The well-respected Thomas Wright was commissioned to create the romantic gardens. His designs include also the lake, Island, Rock Bridge, the Hermitage and the Shell House. In 1839 the castle was enlarged and castellated by Patrick 1st, Lord Bellew.
Beaulieu / Bewley House, Garden and Car Museum, Co. Louth
Beaulieu estate was formed by the Plunkett family in 1082. The estate was converted to its Dutch style by Sir Henry Tichbourne in the 17th century, and today is occupied by his 10th generation descendent, Gabriel De Freitas. Externally the house has remained virtually unaltered since the 1660s and it still contains a great deal of its original fittings.
Belvedere House, Gardens and Park, Co. Westmeath
It was built as a hunting lodge for Robert Rochfort, later the First Earl of Belvedere, around 1742. It is set on an elevated site overlooking Lough Ennell with spectacular views of the 160 acre estate, completed with Victorian Walled Garden, lakeshore walks, one of Ireland's finest collections of rare and special plants and numerous follies.
Birr Castle Demesne, Leviathan Telescope and Gardens, Co. Offaly
Birr Castle has been the private family home of the Parsons family since the early 17th century. It is best known for its telescope and beautiful gardens. At 72 inches, the Leviathan, built in 1845 by the Third Earl of Rosse, was the largest telescope in the world for almost three-quarters of a century. The Earl was credited with discovering the spiral nature of the Whirlpool Galaxy. The award winning garden has an outstanding collection of about 2000 species of rare trees and shrubs.
Blarney Castle and Gardens, Co. Cork
One of Ireland's quintessential attractions, a visit to Blarney Castle and kissing the Blarney Stone is high on most people's list of things to do in Ireland.