Once the seat of the kings of Munster, it was once visited by Saint Patrick in 450, and in the 10th Century Brian Boru was crowned King of Ireland here, however in the 1100’s it was granted to the church by the O’Brien clan king and the Rock became the seat of the archbishop, and at this time Cormac’s Chapel was built.
Today impressive stone walls enclose a 12th Century round tower, high cross and Romanesque chapel, as well as a 13th century Gothic cathedral, 15th century castle and the restored Hall of the Vicars Choral.
Attractions at the Rock of Cashel include museum, audio-visual tours, guided tours and interesting exhibitions, and opening hours vary throughout the year, so it is worth checking what these are before you travel and to bear the Rock of Cashel will be closed from 24th – 26th December inclusively.
Admissions are 45 minutes before closing and ion fees do apply for this attraction, all group bookings must be pre-booked and access for visitors with disabilities to be made by prior arrangement.
***Please also be aware that restorations are taking place and because of this access to Cormac’s Chapel will be guided only from May-September whilst works are completed.
A fantastic must visit attraction that draws visitors from all over, including most recently the high profile visitor from Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh during their State Visit to Ireland in 2011, whilst you are in the area and before or after you have explored the wonderful historic site, why not bask in its beauty and dine in one of the following nearby restaurants:
Chez Hans – A restaurant within the exquisite setting of a church and situated just a moment from the Rock of Cashel, Chez Hans offers an extensive ala carte menu and early dinner menu that showcases some of the very best local produce. Open from Tuesday’s – Saturdays from 6-9:30pm. Complementing Chez Hans and located right next door is Café Hans, a quaint café that offers irresistible lunch options, desserts and afternoon tea and that is open from Tuesday’s – Saturday’s between 12-5:30pm. For more information visit: www.chezhans.net
The Rock House – situated a few minutes from the Rock of Cashel and serving traditional home cooked Irish food daily, the Rock House prides itself in high quality homemade delicious full-flavoured simple rural food. Open 7 days a week from 9am – 4pm serving breakfast and lunch, and open from 5 – 10pm for dinner, their varied menu will suit all tastes. For more information visit: www.rockhouse.ie