Drimnagh Castle has been named one of the top five haunted castles in Europe.
Just in time for Halloween, researchers at Ubuy have examined the number of TripAdvisor descriptions mentioning ‘haunted’ in relation to castles across Europe, revealing five eerie castles in five countries that received a review with "ghoulish claims."
On the list is Drimnagh Castle in South County Dublin.
Drimnagh Castle dates back to the 15th century and is one of the oldest continually inhabited castles in Ireland. The spooky Norman structure is also the only remaining castle in Ireland with a flooded moat around it.
Drimnagh Castle is said to be haunted by Eleanor Barnwell, a young woman who lived in the castle in the late 16th century. According to legend, Eleanor was to be married to her cousin Edmund Barnwall, but her true love was Sean O'Byrn of the O'Byrne Clan of Wicklow, a sworn enemy of the Barnwalls and all other Norman families.
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Eleanor was forced to marry her cousin Edmund, but when her betrothed set off towards St Patrick’s Cathedral, where the wedding was to take place, he was ambushed and killed en route by O’Byrne and his men. In return, Eleanor’s uncle Hugh and his knights attacked the O'Byrnes and Eleanor's beloved Sean was killed. Eleanor's uncle brought her back to Drimnagh and forbade her to leave the castle.
According to one version of the story, the devastated Eleanora escaped and went looking for her true love’s grave and died of exposure deep in the Dublin Mountains, while a second version says she leapt from the walls of Drimnagh Castle and fell to her death. Eleanor's ghost now wanders through the lonely dark rooms of the castle searching for her true love.
Drimnagh Castle was renovated in the 1980s and re-opened to the public in 1991. The castle has been used as a location for a number of films and television shows, including "Ella Enchanted" and "The Tudors." Drimnagh can be hired as a venue for weddings and other events and also provides tours to the public. For more information on the castle, visit here.
Top 5 Haunted Castle in Europe:
- Castello Sforzesco in Milan, Italy
- The Larnaka Medieval Castle in Larnaka, Cyprus
- Spilberk Castle in Brno, Czech Republic
- The Gravensteen Medieval Castle in Ghent, Belgium
- Drimnagh Castle in Dublin, Ireland
To read the ghost stories and histories of all top five haunted castles in Europe, visit here.