Trim Castle, known as the ultimate symbol of Norman glory, is located along the River Boyne in Trim, County Meath, Ireland. It is the biggest Cambro-Norman castle in Ireland. Very few sites in Ireland have as many medieval structures as the historic town of Trim and the most significant of these structures is Trim Castle.
If you are a movie fanatic, you would be interested to know that the castle is also renowned for its role in the production of Mel Gibson’s movie Braveheart. Looking at the grandeur of the castle, you would understand why Trim was chosen as the filming site for the historical movie “Braveheart.”
This article has outlined everything you need to know about Trim Castle, from its intriguing history to tips and tricks to make your visit worthwhile.
Table of Contents
- 1 Frequently Asked Questions
- 2 Early History
- 3 Current Times
- 4 Interesting Trim Castle Facts
- 5 Visiting Trim Castle – Tips and Tricks
If you love to watch movies, you might recognize the castle. The castle served as the walled city of York in Mel Gibson’s Braveheart, it was also used to shoot sequences that took place in London.
Frequently Asked Questions
Where is Trim Castle Located?
Trim Castle is located on the south bank of the River Boyne in Trim, County Meath, Ireland.
When was Trim Castle Built? Who Build It?
The castle was built by Hugh de Lacy and his son Walter in 1173. It took them around 30 years to complete this beautiful stone structure.
When is The Best Time to Visit the Castle?
The best time to visit Trim Castle is in the summers. That is when you will not only get to experience pleasant weather but a magnificent view of the castle against the clear blue sky. The weekends tend to be more crowded than the weekdays, so if you don’t prefer crowded places, it is better to visit the castle on weekdays.
What Other Monuments are Located Nearby?
You can explore a variety of neighbouring sites while visiting Trim Castle. Some of them include St. Patricks Church, St. Marry’s Abbey, and Wellington Memorial Monument, all located within one kilometre (0.6 mile) of the castle.
FOR HISTORY | BEAUTIFUL IMAGES | INTERESTING FACTS | TRAVEL TIPS
The Inception of the Castle (12th Century)
The history of this magnificent castle dates back to the 1170s after the Anglo-Normans had just arrived in Ireland. Hugh De Lacy made the decision to center his newly acquired rulership at Trim Castle. The location of the castle was carefully selected because it looked out over the River Boyne. During the medieval era, it was possible to sail down the river past the castle to the Irish Sea for trade, travel, and war.
Rebuilding a More Robust Structure (12th Century)
Originally, Hugh De Lacy built a wooden castle with a spiked stockade out of a ringfort–an early medieval form of castles. The Gaelic Irish considered the existing castle’s defence structure to be a threat. In 1174, Rory O’Connor, King of Connacht, stormed and demolished it. Hugh de Lacy and his son Walter started constructing a more resilient stone version of the castle. They did not want the castle to collapse again so the following year, and over the next decades, they built Ireland’s biggest Anglo-Norman fortress.
The Switching of Castle’s Possessions (12th-18th Century)
Following de Lacy’s death, Geoffrey de Geneville inherited Trim Castle from the de Lacy family. He was a prominent French knight and a crusader. He turned out to be a devoted ally of Henry III of England as well.
The castle went from the de Geneville line to the Mortimers, and then to the Duke of York until the War of the Roses when it was eventually taken as royal property.
Trim Castle had been altered throughout the years to accommodate its occupants’ demands according to the shifting political situation. The Great Hall was a 14th-century addition. However, since the height of Anglo-Norman authority in Ireland, a large portion of its structure has, in fact, not been modified.
Castle Under the Irish State (19th Century)
The Dunsany Plunkett family was the last Irish family to possess Trim Castle. In 1993, they sold the castle to the Irish State. The family still has access to the property for hunting and fishing. After a substantial program of restoration and conservation of the castle costing over 4.5 million euros ($4.65 million USD), the castle opened for tourism in 2000. The conservation efforts included installing a protective roof on the keep and partially restoring the moat.
Revisit More Historic Places Below or Read Further
Through the governmental body The Office of Public Works (OPW), the Irish Government now owns and is responsible for maintaining the castle. Trim Castle is known to be Ireland’s biggest, most spectacular, and best-preserved Anglo-Norman castle. Admire the grand architecture of the castle where you may gaze down over the castle keep’s interior from the modern walkways, allowing you to see the grandeur and strength of the enormous castle walls.
What was once a noble place of residence for the royals is now open to the public. Book your tickets and take a guided tour around the castle to learn more about its historical existence. You can take a tour around the gardens and watch the beautiful scenic views as the sun goes down.
Interesting Trim Castle Facts
Trim Castle has a lot of intriguing facts relevant to it. Here is a selection of details you may find fascinating:
- It is the largest Cambro-Norman castle in Ireland.
- If you love to watch movies, you might recognize the castle. The castle served as the walled city of York in Mel Gibson’s Braveheart, it was also used to shoot sequences that took place in London.
- A portion of the 1980 film The Big Red One, starring Mark Hamill and Lee Marvin, was also filmed at Trim Castle.
- Due to how strong the castle was and having a direct link to the Irish Sea, Trim Castle functioned as the Lordship of Meath’s administrative center.
The three-story keep in the center of Trim Castle has a distinctive architecture that makes it particularly interesting. The castle keep’s shape is cruciform, which is very different from the rest of the castles in the country.
Visiting Trim Castle – Tips and Tricks
Trim Castle offers you an opportunity to travel back in time. Since most of the castle still retains its original form from centuries ago, you will get to experience one of the best experiences the country has to offer. If you’re eager to visit this ancient wonder, you can make your tour easy and enjoyable by following the suggestions provided below:
How to get to Trim Castle?
From the Irish capital of Dublin to Trim Castle, there are 3 methods of travel: bus, taxi, or by private vehicle. By bus takes around an hour for €10.07 ($10 USD). A taxi takes 40 minutes for around €75.51 ($75 USD), while a private vehicle takes the same amount of time but only around €13.09 ($13 USD).
Ticket Prices, Visiting Hours & Travel Tips
The site’s operating hours change throughout the year, becoming shorter during the off-peak season. You can visit the castle grounds free of charge. Guided tours of the castle grounds are available in limited slots from Monday to Friday between 10:00 am to 1:30 pm.
The castle is usually open every day from early February until early November, but only accessible over the weekends in the remaining months. Ticket pricing for the castle includes the admittance fees as well as a guided tour of the keep. For adults, the price is €4.00 ($4 USD), for groups or seniors it is €3.00 ($3 USD), and for children and students €2.00 ($2 USD). For a family of four, the fee is €10.00 ($10 USD).
Things To Do at Trim Castle
There are many opportunities to have a good time and enjoy yourself at Trim Castle. Some of these activities are as follows:
- Dive deep into the castle’s history on the ground floor exhibition at the castle.
- Don’t forget to view the beautiful sunset. Watch the beautiful Trim Castle against the orange sky from across the river.
- Don’t forget to enjoy a peaceful walk along the Trim Castle River Walk, beginning at Trim Castle’s entrance.
- You will reach the chapel by ascending the spiral staircase in the East Tower of the castle. A stone-washing trough covered in carvings still remains in the chapel.
- The view of Trim town from the top of the castle is very beautiful and breathtaking.
How Long Will It Take to Tour Around?
In roughly one to two hours, you should be able to wander about the castle, discover its history, and take in the beauty around it.
Up to Date Information
For up to date ticket prices and visiting hours visit the official website: https://heritageireland.ie/places-to-visit/trim-castle/
Some words of advice and tips:
Here are some ideas and information to make your visit to Trim Castle easier.
- Do not forget to tour the town of Trim as well, the town’s ancient 13th-century walls still stand around it.
- Please note that there is a 2-hour time restriction on the paid parking lot.
- Visitors with disabilities have limited access. Please be aware that steep staircases in the keep are why visitors with disabilities cannot enter the area.
- If you are visiting in the rainy season, it tends to get very muddy so make sure you are wearing the proper boots.