Malahide Castle , with over 260 acres of remaining estate parkland (the Malahide Demesne Regional Park), lies close to the beautiful and relatively unspoilt village of Malahide, nine miles (14 km) north of Dublin City and very close to Dublin Airport.
Malahide is a cosmopolitan village with fine restaurants including Bon Appetit, a Michelin Star restaurant together with some great character pubs, arts and crafts shops and designer clothes boutiques.
Malahide Castle is very unique in Ireland because the Talbot family managed to keep control of the castle for 791 years. The Talbot family began their reign in 1185 and ended in 1976 despite a short interlude, 1649 to 1660, while Cromwell marched through Ireland. The estate began in 1185, when Richard Talbot, a knight who accompanied Henry 11 to Ireland in 1174, was granted the "lands and harbour of Malahide". The oldest parts of the castle date back to the 12th century and it was home to the Talbot family for 791 years, from 1185 until 1976, the only exception being the period from 1649-1660, when Oliver Cromwell granted it to Miles Corbett after the Cromwellian conquest of Ireland; Corbet was hanged following the demise of Cromwell, and the castle was restored to the Talbots. The building was notably enlarged in the reign of Edward IV, and the towers added in 1765.
The estate survived such losses as the Battle of the Boyne, when fourteen members of the owner's family sat down to breakfast in the Great Hall, and all were dead by evening, and the Penal Laws, even though the family remained Roman Catholic until 1774.
In the 1920s the private papers of James Boswell were discovered in the castle, and sold to American collector Ralph Isham by Boswell's great-great-grandson Lord Talbot of Mlahide.
Malahide Castle and Demesne was eventually inherited by the seventh Baron Talbot and on his death in 1973, passed to his sister, Rose. In 1975, Rose sold the castle to the Irish State, partly to fund inheritance taxes. Many of the contents, notably furnishings, of the castle, had been sold in advance, leading to considerable public controversy, but private and governmental parties were able to retrieve some.
The Castle, along with its subsidiary attractions, is operated as a tourist attraction by Dublin Tourism, working with Fingal County Council which oversees the Castle Demesne.
The main castle can be visited for a fee, on a guided-tour-only basis. In addition, it is possible to hire the famously gothic Great Hall for private banquets. The castle has an eating facility, and adjacent is a craft shop. The castle's best-known rooms are the Oak Room, and the Great Hall, which displays Talbot family history.
Separately, one can visit:
- "Tara's Palace" (2007: fee, to children's charities), a large Doll's House under construction since 1980, and drawing on several of Ireland's "great houses" for architecture and design, at 1/12 scale. This display, situated in the castle courtyard, is supported by classic dolls, toys and other dolls' houses, including one from 1700 and one from the family of Oscar Wilde's mother.
- The Fry Model Railway (2007: fee applies), a large (2,500 sq ft.) working miniature rail display, from the 1920s-1930's. The railway includes models of stations and Irish features.
- The Talbot Botanic Gardens (2007: fee applies), situated behind the castle, comprising several hectares of plants and lawns, a walled garden of 1.6 hectares (2007: public access, Weds. only, groups by appointment) and seven glasshouses, including a Victorian period conservatory. Many plants from the southern hemisphere, notably Chile and Australia, are featured.
The demesne is one of few surviving examples of 18th century landscaped parks, and has wide lawns surrounded by a protective belt of trees. It can be visited freely, with a number of entrances and car parking areas. In addition to woodland walks, and a marked "exercise trail", the park features actively used sports grounds, including a cricket pitch and several football pitches, a 9-hole par-3 golf course, an 18-hole pitch-and-putt course, tennis courts and a boules area. There is also a modern children's playground near the castle.
The grounds at Malahide Castle were opened as a new concert venue by Fingal County Council in summer 2007. Since then music lover have enjoyed concerts by the Artic Monkeys, Joe Cocker, Neil Young, Radiohead and Eric Clapton amongst others. While there has been some debate about the concerts in an exclusive and quietly affluent village like Malahide, it looks like they will become a permanent fixture, the venue rivaling perhaps its country cousin to the north, Slane.
Malahide Castle Restaurant & Tearooms
Unusual dining is to be had in one of the most historic locations in all of Ireland, where the finest food is cooked fresh by experienced chefs, and served to you in the wonderful ambiance of what was originally the main kitchen and storage area of this 12 th century castle.
The tearooms and coffee shop offer you an old style surrounding, with the facilities of a modern self–service area. Here you will find a selection of full meals, light snacks, salad bar, desserts, tea, coffee, wines and other refreshments, all of which are reasonably priced.
Named after the original family, the Talbot restaurant is a 40-seater restaurant offers an excellent range of menus to choose from, whether it is a brief visit or a three course lunch. Ideally located for any tourist group who are departing from Ireland, Dublin airport is only a 15 minute drive from the castle. Vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free options are available.
Malahide Caslle Restaurant has become very popular, not just with tourists but also locals for lunch. So why not enjoy a freshly baked scone, with homemade jam and cream, after your tour of the castle or the Talbot Botanical Gardens.
For group bookings or outdoor catering contact Mary
Phone: +353 1 8463027
Fax: +353 1 8462537
Malahide Castle Banquets
No castle can be considered as such unless it provides the traditional banquets associated with such splendid places. Malahide Castle certainly adheres to that principle.
The Great Hall of Malahide Castle has been the formal Banqueting Room of the Castle since 1475, and continues to play host to private, exclusive banquets. Guests dine in what is considered to be one of the most important mediaeval rooms in Ireland and are entertained by our String Quartet from the Minstrel’s Gallery.
This very special evening commences with a private tour of the Castle with its beautiful period furnishings and its extensive collection of Irish portrait paintings, mainly from the National Gallery of Ireland. Guests may enjoy an aperitif in the 18th Century Blue Room whilst admiring the room’s very fine collection of silhouettes and miniature furniture.
Guests are then led into the Great Hall of Malahide Castle where a sumptous 6-course Banquet awaits. The evening may conclude with traditional Irish musicians or with the simplicity of voice and harp that belongs to the Castle’s renowned Irish singer and harpist. The charm and old-world elegance of this exclusive Banqueting venue offers a unique experience that is Malahide Castle.
Fry Model Railway
The Fry Model Railway is a unique collection of handmade models of Irish trains, from the beginning of rail travel to modern times. One of the world’s largest miniature railways, the exhibition is unique in that it is a working railway covering an area of 2,500 sq. feet.
Situated in the beautiful grounds surrounding Malahide Castle, this delightful collection is a treat for railway enthusiasts, children and adults alike. The beautifully engineered models are from a collection originally built up in the 1920s and 1930s by Cyril Fry, a railway engineer and draughtsman, with each piece assembled with the finest attention to detail.
Irish and international exhibits from the earliest railway developments are run on a Grand Transport Complex which includes stations, bridges, trams, buses, barges and even the river Liffey… pick out the models of Cork and Heuston Stations, O’Connell Bridge and other Dublin landmarks, perfectly constructed in miniature. Definitely a treat for all the family including adults.
The Fry Model Railway is operated by Dublin Tourism Attractions in conjunction with Fingal County Council.
Please Note : The Fry Model Railway is closed on Wednesdays.
Tours of Malahide Castle
Guided audio tours run approximately every fifteen minutes. Duration of tour is thirty-five minutes.
Audio tours are available for groups in French, German, Italian, Spanish, Dutch and Japanese.
Written translations are also available as part of the admission fee. Languages include French, German, Italian, Spanish, Japanese, Dutch and Finnish.
January – December
Monday – Saturday 10am to 5pm
April – September
Sunday & public holidays 10am to 6pm
October – March
Sunday & public holidays 11am to 5pm
Closed for tours 12.45pm to 2pm
Restaurant remains open during lunch
Children (under 12): €4.55
Group Admission Prices:
Children(under 12): €3.55
Minimum group number is 20.
Combined tickets are available with one of the following attractions:
Dublin Writers Museum
James Joyce Museum
Fry Model Railway
Prices for Combined Tickets:
Group Combined Tickets:
Private banquets held in the medieval Great Hall for 30-76 persons.
Tours available in French, German, Italian, Spanish, Dutch, Japanese and Finnish.
Craft shop and restaurant. Coach park, bus and car parking available.
The main entrance to the Castle Demesne is off the Malahide Road, with access also possible from Malahide Village.
Dublin Bus route number 42 travels along one side of the park, and Malahide Railway Station is near the castle end of the park.
By train: Suburban rail and DART from Connolly Station to Malahide.
From Dublin Airport - on leaving at the roundabout take the second exit. At the Airport roundabout take the first exit onto the R132 (signpost for Belfast here). At Cloghran roundabout take the second exit onto the Dublin Road – R132 (signpost for Belfast here). Continue straight onto the R132. At Pinnock Hill Roundabout take the second exit onto the R132 (signpost for Belfast here). At the Malahide Road roundabout take the third exit onto the Swords Road – R106 (signpost for Malahide here). Continue straight on this road and take the first exit on the next roundabout onto the Swords Road. Continue straight along this road for approx one mile, turn right at the traffic lights onto the R107. Take the next turn left onto the Back Road and the next turn left into the grounds of Malahide Castle.
From city centre - start at the Daniel O’Connell monument on O’Connell Street, turn left onto Amiens Street – R105 (signpost for Malahide, Howth and Fairview here). Go straight through traffic lights onto North Strand Road R105, continue on this road for approx .5 miles then turn left at the traffic lights onto the Malahide Road – R107, continue straight on this road until you reach your first roundabout. Take the second exit on this roundabout onto the Malahide Road, continue straight until you reach another roundabout, take the second exit onto the Malahide Road (signpost for Malahide here). Go straight through the traffic lights continuing on the Malahide Road, you will reach Kinsealy, keep going straight and you will reach Feltrim and then Malahide. Turn right onto the Back Road and take the next turn left into the grounds of Malahide Castle.
Tel: + 353 1 846 2184
Fax: + 353 1 846 2537