8 of the Best Castles Hotels in Ireland That WON’T Break the Bank

written by local expert Becky Rogers

Becky is an avid rock climber and outdoor enthusiast and is now living in France as an expat. When she is not writing about travel gear and various destinations she has visited during her travels, you can find her playing with her two dogs.

Looking for castle hotels in Ireland that won’t empty your pockets? Keep on reading as we share out top picks.

We’ve all heard the stories about “once upon a time” where a Prince heroically saves a Princess in some sort of way and they live together in a magnificent castle, so naturally, fairytale castles hold a special place in our hearts.

Now for people who dream of the fairytale, staying in one of these castles would literally be a dream come true, but for others, let’s be honest – how cool would it be to stay in a castle anyway?

Whether you want to live happily ever after or not, staying in a castle is bound to be an awesome experience, one that is likely to be unforgettable.

That’s why we’ve decided to look for THE best castle hotels around and share them with you!

Our destination of choice? Ireland. Covered from North to South with thousands of stunning castles that range from the classic medieval fairytale beauties to gothic fortresses, it’s no wonder that this country is the first choice for many who are searching for that luxury escape.

The good news is though, is that with so much choice comes a range of prices! Let’s just say that you whether you’re backpacking Ireland or looking for a luxurious splurge, these hotels we’ve picked won’t completely break the bank.

Without further ado, here is my list of personal recommendations for the 8 best castles hotels to stay in Ireland!

Ballynahinch Castle Hotel

Room Type: Single |Twin|Double

Facilities: Restaurant | Bar | Garden | Activities

Location: near Kylemore Abbey

Wifi: Yes

Price Range: $230-330 a night

Although young by castle standards, Ballynahinch Castle is still a historical gem and one that is the ultimate portal into your storybook reveries. Nestled in the core of the Connemara region, this 250-year-old castle sits on a private estate with over 700 acres surrounded by rugged woodland and a backdrop of the Twelve Bens Mountain Range.

Can you get a more fairytale setting than this?

Rated as one of the finest luxury castle hotels in Ireland as well as one of the finest fisheries,  this stunning 18th-century manor house will be sure to pamper its guests and provide an exceptional service that makes it more than worthy of its 4-star rating.

A luxury estate overlooking the Owenmore River, the castle is praised for its exceptional location, superb food, and its overall air of traditional luxury.

To see prices and read reviews, check:  Booking.com  

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Waterford Castle Hotel

Room Type: Garden Lodges

Facilities: Restaurant | Bar | Garden | Activities

Location: near Reginald’s Tower

Wifi: Yes

Price Range: $300 a night

Looking for a castle experience that is more under-the-radar? Then The Waterford Castle Hotel should be at the top of your list! Situated on its own small private island off the River Suir, this luxury estate offers 310-acres of land, all of which emanates an old-world ambiance.

From its lavish rooms each framed with the original cast iron windows overlooking the grounds to its Michelin-starred restaurant, guests can enjoy the charming combination of living in the elegant past with modern comfort.

With a rich and interesting history, this 16th-century castle offers plenty of opportunities to get outside ensuring guests indulge in both luxury and the beautiful nature of the surrounding area.

To see prices and read reviews, check:  Booking.com  

Solis Lough Eske Castle

Room Type: Twin|Double|Suites

Facilities: Restaurant | Bar | Fitness Center | Pool | Spa | Activities

Location: near Donegal

Wifi: Yes

Price Range: $250-500 a night

Another great choice for castles to stay in Ireland is Lough Eske Castle found in the less-traveled and most rugged county of Donegal. Set on the edge of the Lough Eske river with the Blue Stack Mountains towering in the distance, this is yet another medieval castle that ticks that box for fairytale landscape.

Although the castle was originally built in the 1400s, it has since been reconstructed to an Elizabethan Tudor mansion in the 1860s and has been loving reconstructed in recent years.

Now this award-winning luxury hotel (featured on Condé Nast‘s top three luxury Ireland hotels!) embraces both contemporary elegance and country charm, offering its guests a 5-star castle experience at more affordable prices, modern amenities, and adventure activities in the surrounding area, all of which make this idyllic getaway state of the art.

To see prices and read reviews, check: Booking.com  

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Castle Leslie Estate

Room Type: Twin|Double

Facilities: Restaurant | Bar | Garden | Spa | Hot Tub | Activities

Location: near Glaslough Lake

Wifi: Yes

Price Range: $220 a night

If you’re a history buff or outdoor enthusiast, the Castle Leslie Estate is the place to stay. As one of the last great Irish estates still in the hands of the original family, the lodge is a restored stone stable-courtyard within 1000 acres of countryside, ancient woods and lakes.

Boasting Renaissance interiors complete with ornate fireplaces, rich woodwork, and hand-carved ceilings, this luxury estate is nothing short of spectacular. A place that prides itself on individuality (here, no two rooms are the same!), you can be sure that you will be immersed in riveting stories from the past.

Not only that, but guests will also benefit from the hotel’s facilities from Victorian treatment rooms and an award-winning restaurant to one of Europe’s finest equestrian playgrounds! Conveniently located between Belfast and Dublin, this is a luxury escape that is accessible yet it feels like it’s just you and the mountains.

To see prices and read reviews, check: Booking.com 

Cabra Castle Hotel

Room Type: Twin|Double|Cottages

Facilities: Restaurant | Bar | Garden | Activities

Location: near Lough An Lae Mountain

Wifi: Yes

Price Range: $155-240 a night

One of the most accessible castles to stay in Ireland and a very affordable stay would be the Cabra Castle Hotel located just 1.5 hours outside of Dublin. Nestled in the beautiful Dun a Ri National Forest Park of Cavan, Cabra Castle Hotel is a stunning 18th-century-now-boutique castle which looks out over its huge grounds and breathtaking surrounding countryside.

A smaller castle with only 22 rooms, guests can expect individual style with a charming mixture of original furnishings and modern comforts, and an intimate service that can only be achieved from a modest venue.

With high ceilings and grand staircases, and a bar and restaurant serving fresh, local food, Cabra Castle Hotel provides guests with a 4-star luxury stay that will keep them coming back for more.

To see prices and read reviews, check: Booking.com 

Ballyseede Castle

Room Type: Single|Double|Family|Superior|Suites

Facilities: Restaurant | Bar | Golf Course | Cycling

Location: near Kerry County Museum

Wifi: Yes

Price Range: $130-330 a night

One of the most affordable options of castles to stay in Ireland is Ballyseede Castle. Hugging the world-renowned Ring of Kerry route and Kerry’s only castle hotel, Ballyseede offers 4-star luxury accommodation full of opulence, history and a touch of modern charm all rolled into one.

Set on 30 acres of Irish woodland, guests can expect an old-world elegance throughout the whole castle from the pristine private gardens to grand features such as ornate cornices, marble fireplaces, and an elegant oak staircase.

The main draw of Ballyseede Castle is the feeling that you’ve stepped back in history but there are many reasons why this castle is among the best castles to stay. Fine dining with traditional Irish cuisine and a picturesque natural setting full of mountains, lakes, beaches and local pubs with Irish music are all reasons that this stay will be an unforgettable one.

To see prices and read reviews, check: Booking.com 

Castlemartyr Resort

Room Type: Twin|Double|Suites

Facilities: Restaurant | Bar | Garden | Fitness Center | Spa | Pool | Activities

Location: near Fota Wildlife Park

Wifi: Yes

Price Range: $200-290 a night

Another accessible castle stay just 37km away from Cork International Airport is at Castlemartyr Resort. As well as ease and convenience, what’s great about this castle is that it gives you the best of both worlds: 800-year-old castle ruins steeped in history and a 17th-century manor house set adjacent to the ruins offering lavish accommodation.

From suites and staterooms in the restored manor house to more contemporary rooms in the resort’s newer wing, this castle stay will satisfy any traveler whatever your needs.

In this private 220-acre estate, guests can benefit from a stylish spa center, a relaxing indoor swimming pool, a first-class fitness center, an award-winning restaurant and far-reaching countryside views.

To see prices and read reviews, check: Booking.com 

The Lodge at Ashford Castle

Room Type: Twin|Double|Suites

Facilities: Restaurant | Bar | Fitness Center | Golf Course | Garden | Activities 

Location: near Lough Corrib Lake

Wifi: Yes

Price Range: $250-700 a night

While this exactly isn’t in the castle itself, it’s a pretty good alternative. Located within the castle grounds of the Ashford Castle, you can opt to stay in the Lodge at Ashford Castle which features palatial like rooms that are out of this world. Boasting a charming mixture of eras from its 13th century Norman roots to its 18th-century French château influences, Ashford Castle has all the features (and more!).

Everything from the immaculate service, fantastic food, and the overall vibe and ambiance of the place comes highly recommended.

To see prices and read reviews, check: Booking.com  

Disclaimer: All photo credits and copyright belong to the establishments unless stated otherwise.

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Where to Stay in Ireland | Looking for the best castle hotels to stay in Ireland? Here are our top picks for a unique stay in Ireland. Let's face it, everyone has dreamed of staying in a castle at least once in their life and where else can you do it but in Ireland?
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