Newtown Castle, Ballyvaughan

#3 of 10 in Historic Sites in The Burren
Castle · Hidden Gem · Tourist Spot
Newtown Castle is a 16th-century tower house, located close to the village of Ballyvaughan within the Burren area of County Clare, Ireland. Uniquely for a tower house of its type in Ireland, Newtown Castle is mostly cylindrical in shape but rises from a square pyramidical base. It is today part of the Burren College of Art.HistoryNewtown Castle was likely built circa 1550 for the O'Brien clan. In the Forfeitures and Distribution books of 1641 it was listed as property of Donogh O'Brien. However, Newtown Castle soon passed into possession of the O'Lochlainn (or O'Loghlen) family, the most powerful clan of the area. The Ordnance Survey of 1839 names Charles O'Loghlen as inhabitant of the castle and describes the tower as being in good repair. Charles O'Loghlen was locally known as the "King of the Burren".In 1848, the landlord, the then Marquess of Buckingham who had been bankrupted sold the local lands. The Buckingham estates in County Clare, around 7000acre in the Barony of Burren were purchased for 30,000 pounds by one Richard Samuel Guinness, acting as agent for Colonel Henry White.At the time of the Griffith's valuation in the 1850s, the building next to the castle, erected in about 1820, was a rectory inhabited by the Reverend Hugh B. Howlett.
Put Newtown Castle at the forefront of your travel plans using our Ballyvaughan trip maker site.
Create an itinerary including Newtown Castle
© OpenMapTiles © OpenStreetMap contributors

Newtown Castle reviews

Rate this attraction
TripAdvisor traveler rating
TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.0
36 reviews
  • This16th century restored cylindrical castle tower is in the grounds of the Burren School of Arts and was open 9-5 and free. You can walk to the top for a fine view of the countryside. Toilet. Café.  more »
  • Ireland has many beautiful castles and so much history this was just one of many worth a stop. No trip to Ireland is complete without a few castles tours this one is nice but not as complete as some.....  more »
  • An interesting site to visit just off the coast road. Was worth the short extra trip to walk through though it doesn't have too much in the sense of time spent there. If you walk up the tower there is some information regarding it's restoration and details about the historical relevance of the site. The setting and views from inside the tower are absolutely stunning, though access to the very top is not allowed due to health and safety.
  • Nice castle but the café and the staff made it more than worth a visit. Try the chicken leak and smoked Lardon‘s casserole!

Plan your trip to Ballyvaughan

  • Get a personalized trip
    A complete day by day itinerary
    based on your preferences
  • Customize it
    Refine your trip. We'll find the
    best routes and schedules
  • Book it
    Choose from the best hotels
    and activities. Up to 50% off
  • Manage it
    Everything in one place.
    Everyone on the same page.