Kylmore Abbey, Ireland
This is a must see if you planning to visit County Galway. The view here is just Amazing, The Castle, The Lake and The Garden.there is also a Church Opposite The Castle but you can't see it on my pictures because of the tall green Trees.
I was told This Castle was build as a private home by Mitchell Henry from the UK in the 1800's
I didn't have time to go inside The Castle But I liked the View of everything. Hope I return nextime...
There is also Hiking trails to the Mountain.
Visit any nearest Tourist Office in Dublin for more Info on this Tour. There are Pamphlets about any Tour you want to take part in.
Kylemore Abbey was constructed between 1867 and 1871 by Mitchell and Margaret Henry. They had visited Connemara already during their honeymoon in the 1850s and loved the area very much. When Mitchell Henry inherited money they bought the old hunting Lodge Kylemore Lodge and 15 000 acres of land. On the site of the lodge they built their castle. Construction of the castle and gardens gave good paid work for the tenants and people in the area. The Henry’s also made other improvements for their tenants, like setting up a school for the children.
Mitchell and Margaret Henry had nine children and they lived a happy life together at Kylemore Castle. Their happiness ended in tragedy as Margaret died of dysentery, only 45 years old, while the family were on holiday in Egypt 1874.
In 1903 Michell Henry sold Kylemore Castle to the Duke and Duchess of Manchester and the Duchess had a lot of changes done to the interior of the castle. Kylemore Castle change owners again and finally, in 1920, it was purchased by an order of Benedictine Nuns, and thus became Kylemore Abbey. The nuns have made much restoration work of the Walled Garden and Gothic Church and they have had a boarding school which closed as late as June 2010.
To come to Kylemore Abbey I walked from Letterfrack. It is 4km and the walk took around 45-50 minutes. I arrived before 10 o’clock and luckily it had already opened. At Kylemore Abbey I walked around for 3h to see the main building, the Gothic Church and the Walled Gardens, before I went to a café to have coffee and scone.
The admission was 12.50 Euro (February 2013).
I have got more photos and tips about Kylemore Abbey on my Letterfrack page.
Kylemore Castle was built on the shores of Lough Pollicappul in Connemara in 1867 by Mitchell Henry as a gift to his wife Margaret. It was later bought by the Duke and Duchess of Manchester in 1903 and the heavy debt on the property was financed by the father of the Duchess who was an American millionaire. When he died the property was run by a banker who managed it for 7 years until it was finally purchased by the Benedictine Order in 1920 and became an Abbey.
The Abbey is today an International Girl's School of great repute. It is open to the public and is really worth a visit. Apart from the Abbey itself, there is a beautiful Gothic Church and the famous Walled Garden, not to mention Restaurant and the inevitable souvenir shop which sells top end locally made craft and ceramics.
A walk from the Abbey along the Lough to the Church in the late afternoon is so enchanting that it defies description.
Estate Opening Times
Month Opening Times
November - February 10.00am - 4.30pm
March - June 9.00am - 6.00pm
July - August 9.00am - 7.00pm
September - October 9.30am - 6.00pm
Restaurant Opening Times
Winter 10.00am - 4.30pm
Summer - Weekdays 9.30am - 5.30pm
Summer - Weekends 9.30am - 6.00pm
Travel from Galway City by luxury coach on a day trip to Connemara and stop off for a visit to Kylemore Abbey & Victorian Walled Gardens.
Kylemore Abbey is postcard-perfect. It is situated at the foot of a steep mountain, and next to a shimmering lake. The Benedictine Nuns make this their home and teach the privileged girls who attend the boarding school there.
I didn't go inside the abbey (nuns kind of creep me out), but enjoyed walking around the lovely grounds. If you want a great picture, stop on the road across the lake and go to the edge of the water.
There is a visitors center here where you can learn a lot about the abbey. There is access to a small part of the the abbey, as well as a gift/craft shop, restaurant. Nearby is a beautiful, small Gothic church. The Benedictines also manage a walled garden that is 1 mile from the Abbey, and s accessible to the public.
Kylemore Abbey looks like a medieval castle, but in fact it was built in 1826 for Mitchell Henry, a rich merchant from Manchester. In WW I benedictinian nuns from Belgium came there and transfered the castle into a boarding school for agriculture.
You will be able to park your car directely there and have a little stroll in the park in order to get a good place, where to take a picture and at certain times of the year you can obviously also see the building from inside. That was unfortunately not possible, when I had been there in 1990.
When I visit mansions, castles or palaces I like knowing something about the people who used to live there. Were they happy? What were their passions? Were they lucky enough to experience true love? How did their lives end? With this knowledge it's easy for me to fill the rooms and gardens with the characters from the past.
The story of Kylemore Abbey is especially touching. (But let me explain first - I'm not into Harlequine books). The castle was built out of love. Mitchell Henry, a young doctor from England, and his newly-wed wife Margaret honeymooned in Kylemore. Charmed with the beauty of the place, the man promised his wife to build their dream house there. Some years later he was able to make their dream come true with the money inherited after his father's death. The castle was completed in 1871 and the Henrys with their nine children moved in hoping to start a new happy life. The tragedy struck three years later when, during a family vacation in Egypt, Margaret contracted a mysterious disease and soon died. Her body was brought back to Kylemore and put in mausoleum, followed then by a church, built in her memory. (Doesn't it bring to mind another monument of love - Taj Mahal?) It was not the end of family tragedies, though. In 1892 their daughter Geraldine died in a horse accident. Henry decided to sell the property. He died at the age of 84 and his ashes were brought back to Kylemore.
The castle was converted into an abbey in 1921 when Benedictine nuns arrived here from Ypres in Belgium. Today they run here an exclusive school for girls, but I've heard it's going to close down in 2010. Five of the rooms of the Abbey are open to visitors, as well as a Victorian walled garden, reopened in 2000.
What attracts the tourists is mainly the beautiful location of the place. It's definitely a must-see, although I think that you won't miss very much if you don't get inside.
Admission - 8 EURO
Oh, one more thing - there was a big fire in 1959, which destroyed a part of the Abbey ( a sign of curse?)
The scenery and buildings of Kylemore Abbey are beautiful from every angle. Make sure to walk to the chapel and go through the museum. Be aware this is still a girls school, so activities may be on while you are visiting.
The abbey & landscape area are beautiful, but you don't have to pay to to park along the road & take pictures of it! To enter the area that includes the abbey, chapel, and walk around the lake; it is about 7 euro.
For any traveler to Connemarra, Kylemore Abbey will be on the itinerary. It's an architectural wonder in a peaceful setting along a lake at the bottom of a beautiful mountain. Still, the tour of the house itself is disappointig, as the nuns who now live there limit the visit to a few rooms.
So why go, especially since there is an entry fee? Well, the ornate gothic chapel is a good reason -- don't miss that. And the gardens are fairly nice. But the best reason is to contrast the fine style of living observed by the manor's founder and contrast it to the plight of the poor masses who were starving ane emigrating. Not far from the Abbey on a windswept roadside is a minor memorial to those people (take the road from Killary to Louisburg).
Even though the founder of Kylemore was known for his generousity and kindness toward the locals, the comfort and splendor displayed here makes you think of the huge economic and social chasms that must have existed in 19th-century Ireland.
Kylemore Abbey, located in the Kylemore Pass in Connemara, County Galway, has been home to the Irish Benedictine nuns since 1920. The Benedictine nuns bought the house in 1920, having fled their convent in war-torn Belgium in 1914, where they had ran a boarding school for girls for over 300 years. They re-established the school in Kylemore and it is still very much alive today.
The Abbey was originally built in 1868 by Mitchell Henry, in memory of his late wife Margaret. Its architecture is neo-gothic and the house still displays all the characteristics of that period. Kylemore Abbey's most famous feature is its miniature cathedral, known locally as the Gothic church.
Facilities at Kylemore Abbey include a visitor centre, an exhibition housed in the main reception rooms of the house and a video which takes the visitor through the history of the house and its occupants. The Visitor Centre and exhibition, Gothic Church and Craft shop are open all year.
Set on the banks of the lough of Kylemore is the impressive Kylemore Abbey.
Standing in the shadows of the 12 bens this castle which once belonged to a rich industrialist from England, now is in the possesion of the order of Benedictine Nuns. The Nuns run a girls boarding school here and allow visitor to walk around the grounds and along the edge of the lough. There is a restaurant and craft shop here, also there is a small replica chapple depicting the Norwich cathedral.
Open to the public March to October.
Kylmore Abbey in Connemara. This was built by a man for his wife, including the gorgeous chapel with all different kinds of Connemara marble. Sadly, she died shortly after its completion, and he moved away and left it as an abbey. There is a really steep hiking trail above it where you can hike to a statue of Jesus - the view is fabulous over the Abbey and you'll get a nice little workout.