Seven of the most haunted castles in Ireland ahead of Halloween 2017
Life & Style

Seven of the most haunted castles in Ireland ahead of Halloween 2017

WE all love a good ghost story around Halloween, and Ireland has no shortage of spooky locations with a tale to tell.

Ireland is home to thousands of historic castles, many of which take a particularly brave person to visit – especially after dark.

With so many spooky spots to visit in the Emerald Isle, it’s a difficult choice to make.

Thankfully, travel site Expedia have narrowed things down – but do you have the courage to stopover at any of them?

Here are 7 of the most haunted castles in Ireland…

1. Leap Castle, Co. Offaly 

Considered by many to be Ireland’s most haunted castle, Leap Castle was home to some brutal atrocities in centuries gone by.

Many of these revolved around the O’Carroll clan who occupied the castle for many years.

Today the castle is the home of the Ryan family, and while access is restricted, thousands of visitors still flock to Leap every year in hope of catching a sign of the spirits that wander Ireland’s most haunted fortress

2. Ballygally Castle, Co. Antrim

Ballygally Castle is said to be one of Ireland’s most haunted buildings.

The original caste at Ballygally dates back to the early 17th Century with the central tower said to be haunted by the ghost of Lady Isabella Shaw..

Lady Isabella’s ghost is said to walk the corridors of the hotel and even knock on doors – so good luck with the room service.

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3. Loughmoe Castle, Co. Tipperary

Loughmoe Castle is a ruined castle in the village of Loughmoe, about 15 minutes from Thurles.

Today, the castle is said to be haunted by someone who died there in the mid-1900s.

If the place creeps you out just a little too much, the stunning Rock of Cashel is a short 30 minute drive away.

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4. Clonony Castle, Co. Offaly

Another haunted castle in Offaly, Clonony Caste is a 16th-Century Tudor castle with typical Tudor features including mystery passages and a murder hole.

The castle was a gift to Thomas Boleyn from King Henry VIII in exchange for the hand in marriage of his daughter Anne – who Henry later beheaded.

Anne’s cousins are said to be buried within the grounds of the castle, and a ghost known as ‘The Thin Man’ has appeared in the past atop its tower.

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5. Clifden Castle, Co. Galway

While the beaches are often a reason for many flocking to the seaside town of Clifden, it’s the town’s castle that really gets the blood rushing.

Clifden Castle was built in the 19th Century but went into decline during the Great Famine of 1845.

The castle is said to be haunted by the spirits of the poor and deprived who sheltered in the castle grounds during the blight.

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6. Belvelly Castle, Co. Cork

The 15th-Century Belvelly Castle is said to be haunted by several spirits, with the most famous being the faceless ghost of Lady Margaret.

Lady Margaret Hardnett was captured and brought to the castle in the 17th Century, were she is said to have been starved and lost her beauty, before smashing all the mirrors in the castle.

Her tortured spirit is believed to haunt the castle to this day.

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7. Castle Leslie, Co. Monaghan

Castle Leslie is a 17th-Century castle that has been converted into a luxury hotel in Monaghan, close to the Northern Ireland border.

The castle has been in the Leslie household since 1665 and is said to be haunted by the ghost of Norman Leslie who died during the First World War.

The room that Norman is said to haunt is the Red Room – which just so happens to be one of the castle’s main attractions of the hotel.