Blarney Castle and Gardens is one of the most visited tourist sites in Ireland. Cork English Academy organises regular trips for our English language students as part of our Social Activity Programme.
The castle is believed to have been first constructed as a wooden house as far back as 1200. Approximately 10 years later, this was replaced by a stone structure. After the destruction of this building the Blarney castle we know today was built by Cormac Láidir MacCarthy, Lord of Muscry in 1446.
Blarney castle has had many owners over the years including Sir Richard Pyne, Sir James St John Jefferyes coming up to today’s owner Sir Charles St John Colthurst.
The Blarney Stone
The exact origin of the famous Blarney stone is unknown however if you believe the legend this is a must see spot. For centuries there is a tradition to kiss the Blarney stone to give you the gift of eloquence (or gab)
Blarney House and Gardens
Blarney House is on the castle grounds, it is a Scottish Baronial mansion designed by John Lanyon. While it was once a private home it is now open to the public, full of grand rooms and bursting with history. The house and castle gardens are one of the highlights of any visit. There are paths touring the grounds with signs pointing out the various attractions such as several natural rock formations with fanciful names such as Druid’s Circle, Witch’s Cave and the Wishing Steps.