Visits For July, 2010

Sunday, 11th July 2010

A Day At Some Carlow Castles And Other Sites

I had recently seen a castle on this page on the internet: http://www.thestandingstone.ie/2010/01/ballymoon-castle-co-carlow.html - a great site run by TheStandingStone from the megalithomania.com forums. Wow! What a place ... and it's free to visit, too. There is also a comment on that page recommending Ballyloughlan Castle, so these were my targets for the day.

Before visiting the castles I went to Nurney, near Leighlinbridge, to see the two crosses there. For some reason I had got my bearings wrong when I entered the village and it took me ages to find the crosses.

Ballymoon castle is a strange one; a large, semi-ruined or unfinished, square court yard castle, not a towerhouse. Much of the nice stonework has gone, but there are still traces of the finery that this building once had. It's a great place for walk around and explore, with chambers in the walls and a fine view of Mount Leinster.

Ballyloughlan castle has a fine gatehouse, a fairly well-preserved corner tower and a ruined corner tower. These three buildings stand alone in the field: the walls that joined them up have been taken away, presumably to build the large ruined farm complex at the top of a nearby field.

As I was driving back I came across signposts to Rathnagerragh Castle. Following these brought me to a relatively disappointing ruin.

After all this 'modern' stuff I had to visit something a bit more megalithic. To free myself from the feelings of guilt that I was experiencing about enjoying visits to to the such modern structures I went to Castleruddery Lower stone circle. It's a bit over grown at this time of year and the sheep in the field seem to be staying out of the stones.

Nurney (Co. Carlow)Cross7 New Images
Templepeter (Co. Carlow)Church4 New Images
Ballymoon (Co. Carlow)Castle19 New Images
Ballyloughlan (Co. Carlow)Castle18 New Images
Ballynagerragh (Co. Carlow)Castle4 New Images
Castleruddery Lower (Co. Wicklow)Stone Circle12 New Images
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