The fifth-century home of the kings of Munster, the Rock of Cashel—or St. Patrick’s Rock, as it’s also known—is now home to a collection of religious monuments, including a roofless medieval cathedral and a 12th-century chapel. Set atop an elevated knoll, the site commands excellent views over the green, grassy Irish countryside.
When visiting the Rock of Cashel, you can tour the site independently or join one of the 45-minute guided tours that take place several times a day. These guided tours cover St. Patrick’s Cathedral, the 92-foot (28-meter) 12th-century round tower, the high cross, and the Romanesque St. Cormac’s Chapel.
You can visit the Rock of Cashel as part of half or full-day organized sightseeing tours from both Dublin and Cork, which typically include other nearby attractions such as Blarney Castle and Kilkenny. The Rock of Cashel also features on multi-day tours from Dublin, along with other attractions around the Ring of Kerry, the Wild Atlantic Way, Cork, and Connemara.
Things to Know Before You Go
- The Rock of Cashel is a must for history buffs.
- Allow around 1–1.5 hours to properly explore.
- Bring rainproof gear, as much of the site is in the open air.
- Wheelchair users can be accommodated with advance notice. Most of the paths and some of the buildings at the site are accessible.
How to Get There
The Rock of Cashel is situated near the town of Cashel in County Tipperary. From Cork, follow the M8; the journey should take around one hour and 10 minutes. From Limerick, follow the N24, N74, and R932 to Cashel.
When to Get There
The Rock of Cashel is open throughout the year. The busiest time to visit is during the summer months, June through August. If you’re planning a trip during these months, consider coming in early morning or later afternoon to avoid the crowds.
What Else to See in Cashel
After viewing the medieval ruins, take some time to wander the nearby market town of Cashel. Admire the brightly painted pubs, pop into the Cashel Heritage Centre, and browse the memorabilia on show at the Cashel Folk Village. Other worthwhile sights in the area include the ancient ruins of Athassel Priory and Hore Abbey. Brú Ború cultural center, situated at the foot of the Rock of Cashel, focuses on Irish music and dance and is a must-see for fans of traditional Irish culture.