An Athlone native recalls his memories of Christmas time growing up in Athlone.
Standing at a strategic crossing point on the River Shannon, Athlone Castle has played a crucial role in the events that have shaped Ireland. Explore its secrets and stories, tales of battle and bloodlust, destructions and new beginnings. Let the experience begin….
Enjoy our free fun online activities for all the family, before or after your visit. Explore our engaging and educational fact sheets and activity pages. Get creative with crafts projects inspired by the rich history of Athlone. Listen to stories from the castle and learn how to conduct an archaeological excavation at home or in the back garden. Find Out More
The first real signs of settlement at Athlone grew up in Anglo-Norman times around the castle which was built for King John of England by his Irish justiciar Bishop John De Gray of Norwich. Though not the first castle to be built at Athlone this castle has endured like no other. Read More
“I recently visited athlone castle with my 7 year old and 3 month old. My 7 year old loved the experience, especially all the interactive parts and dressing up. It made learning about history fun for him. It was also very buggy friendly for my 3 month old. All in all we really enjoyed this visit.’’
“Absolutely adored out time in Athlone Castle. From the interactive exhibits to the incredible costumes to the layout and views this is a gem. Pricing is perfect and is a lovely way to spend an afternoon. We meandered through the exhibition for over an hour and took time to enjoy spectacular views over the river.’’
“I was so lucky to check out this beautiful castle on my trip down to Athlone! This place is definitely worth checking out if you’re down here for the weekend! Stunning views from the top of the castle and incredible interactive displays. The staff are so friendly and welcoming, the castle is rich with history, I learnt so much and it was a really nice self guided tour. You can take as long as you like walking through the castle, and there’s also lots of hand sanitising stations around the grounds and in the castle!’’
“If you’re interested in the history of Athlone, specifically the Siege of Athlone in 1690-1691 then it is a must-see. Tickets can be purchased online or in the visitors centre and then there are eight different “rooms” with different exhibits and activities. They have interactive games and dress-up areas that would make it a great outing with kids (although I enjoyed a lot of the games myself!). If you’re really interested in the history and plan on reading every plaque give yourself a couple hours to spend here. The exterior of the castle is open to visitors as well, and is a great place to get pictures of the surrounding town.’’
“My friend and myself had to go to Athlone to do a delivery. Once we were done,we decided we’d go and see some of Athlone. We decided we go see the castle as castles are my thing. The staff are so very welcoming and very knowledgeable about all aspects of the castle throughout its history. It’s a fun place to visit. You, and if you have kids with you can dress up as a lords or a lady’s of the castle and sit on a throne with a crown and take pictures. There’s lots to see and learn there. I’d highly recommend a visit if passing. Or go to their website to learn more.’’