A snowy morning at the tower.Ballytarsna Hackett Castle.

Private room

8 guests

2 bedrooms

5 beds
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Ages 2 - 12
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Under 2
8 guests maximum. Infants don’t count toward the number of guests.
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Hackett Castle is a 15th century tower house. It is like a keep, but has one major difference. Where a keep is a powerful thick-walled tower with few openings except arrow loops, an Irish tower house in a home for the family, that resembles a keep.

When restoring this tower, we have maintained its status as a fortress. We also have made a decision to make it warm and comfortable. It is a cozy country home ensconced between between castellated battlements, authentic and usable!

The space

Ballytarsna-Hackett Castle is a 15th century fortified tower house. Originally added to the existing castle of 1220, it was built in 1480 to provide the Hackett family with a safe and private accommodation apart from the older castle. The Hacketts were ousted from the then Hackett Castle in 1655 by a small Parliamentarian force, due to their support for the Catholic Confederation of Kilkenny. It fell into ruin in the 18th Century. Lovingly restored by us between 1999 and 2009, it is now available for you to enjoy. The entire top story is now being offered for Bed & Breakfast.
Located on the 5th story, this lofty and marvelous room offers spectacular views of the Tipperary countryside, including the Rock of Cashel. It is a self-contained, ensuite (yes, it has a toilet) assembly of everything you will need to make your stay as enjoyable as possible. A large and elegant four-poster bed is in one corner. The other three corners are occupied by a small library and sitting area, a large free-standing bath tub and finally a 19th century armoire for your clothes. At the end of a narrow passage is your private toilet. In the other direction at the end of a small side chamber is the castle DUNGEON. This grim feature hopefully will not be needed. One occupant has carved the date 1536 into the wall.
Breakfast is served in the cozy ground floor kitchen, ensconced between 9 foot thick defensive walls. Evening meals are available on request and are served in the Great Hall of the castle. This candle lit room is warmed by the large 15th century fireplace. Packed lunches are also available if desired for your outings.
Ballytarsna-Hackett Castle is centrally located in County Tipperary. Situated in the countryside on 3 beautiful acres, we are only 10 minutes from the tourist town of Cashel and Thurles, which contain good pubs and restaurants. We are in the middle of many historic tourist attractions. Dublin airport is 1 hour 40
minutes by car and Shannon airport is 1 hour 25 minutes.

Finally, a word of caution; There are 64 stone steps to reach your room. There is no wheel chair accessibility and you should be fairly fit to make this climb. This building is a listed ancient monument and there is strictly no smoking or pets allowed. We look forward to having you as our guest and hope you will enjoy a unique and rewarding experience in this fine medieval fortress.

See the Guidebook to see all the things to see and do within an hour of the castle. You can easily spend 2 days here seeing them all. There is much history and monuments all around us.

Guest access

Once you are here, feel free to use the Great Hall as a sitting room along with us or without us. You are also welcome in the kitchen. Make yourself at home!

IF YOU ARRIVE BEFORE 6PM, you will be greeted with home made scones and tea.

Interaction with guests

We'll be around most of your stay f you need help with anything at all.

Just ask!

Other things to note

Due to the steep 64 stone steps to the top floor our home is not suitable for kids under 8 years..Parents would have to carry younger kids up and down and this is not an easy journey ! Total supervision is required at all times with kids for safety reasons in our unique home.

The space
Bathrooms: 2
Bedrooms: 2
Beds: 5
Check In: 4PM - 8PM
Check Out: 12PM (noon)
Room type: Private room


Extra people: 91 / night after 2 guests
Weekly Discount: 15%
Weekend Price: 285 / night
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Sleeping arrangements
Bedroom 1
1 queen bed, 2 single beds
Bedroom 2
2 double beds

House Rules
No smoking
Not suitable for pets
No parties or events
Check in time is 4PM - 8PM

Please be slow and deliberate on our stairways . In 530 years,no one has been injured on them (as far as we know!). Just be careful. We HIGHLY recommend that you do not try to drag large suitcases up the stairs. Most people repack a small bag to carry up with their needed items for the night. Do not open the windows in the room except for those indicated. The ones with bird wire are fine.
There is NO SMOKING or pets allowed.
This IS NOT a place for loud partying and drinking to excess. If this is what you want, this is not the place for you. This is our home and loud and raucous behaviour will not be tolerated. You will be told to leave.

You must also acknowledge
Must climb stairs - There are 64 stone steps to your room, each one 22cm high on average. You must be fit to make this climb. Don't plan on lugging large or heavy bags up



Cancel up to 5 days before your trip and get a full refund. Cancel within 5 days of your trip and the first night is non-refundable, but 50% of the cost for the remaining nights will be refunded.

Safety features
Smoke detector
Carbon monoxide detector
First aid kit
Fire extinguisher

1 night minimum stay

253 Reviews

Check In
Ben User Profile
August 2017
There aren't enough superlatives in the language to describe our stay. The Room. Absolutely amazing. Beautifully restored and opulently furnished, you'd be forgiven for thinking you've taken a step back in time. As for the Hosts, John and Margaret are brilliant. You won't be wanting for anything, they're attentive, funny and a wealth of knowledge on the history of the castle and it's surroundings. Not to be missed.

Robert User Profile
July 2017
An amazing castle. John and Margarets knowledge and dedication to the castle really bowled us over. They made our engagement so special and we cannot thank them enough for the wonderful experience. You can tell very easily how much love and attention to detail went into the rebuild of this castle. We can't wait to visit again

Guy User Profile
July 2017
John's place is an overnight B&B experience that you don't want to miss. This castle tower home has fantastic views and extraordinary accommodations.

Scott User Profile
July 2017
Wonderfully secluded castle keep. Margaret was so friendly and sharing with her time. She gave us a tour of the keep and explained how they restored it. It was fascinating to see how a castle could be comfortable while staying true to the historical roots. I would absolutely stay there again. If you are an active couple of small family who wants a taste of castle life in the country then this is your place. Be sure you are able to climb narrow stairs. There are two floors of a narrow spiral staircase followed by two floors of a narrow straight staircase. If you are looking for nightlife or a place to be loud late at night then I'd recommend finding something in the city. This is a quiet personal home and your room is directly above the owner's bedroom. To summarize, this was my favorite place we stayed during our Ireland trip

Brendan User Profile
July 2017
Nothing beats a night in a castle while on holidays in Ireland! Far better than even the pictures showed. Highly recommended.

Naomi User Profile
June 2017
One of the things I insisted on doing during my Ireland trip was to stay in a castle, and this place was the perfect match! It felt romantic and luxurious. Margaret was a wonderful host and shared the history of the house. She also made a delicious traditional Irish breakfast. A very memorable experience!

Christina User Profile
June 2017
There are no words. By here are some. Romeo the cat is a total gentleman. He greeted us at the door and tolerated much petting. The stairs are steep indeed but we made it just fine! The history and attention to detail of the tower house is beyond words--it is simultaneously luxurious and historic.

Cashel, IrelandJoined in May 2013
John User ProfileJohn is a superhost.

Hi,we are John and Margaret and we are delighted to be listing our unique home. I am originally from the US. I am a pilot, stonemason and historian.Margaret from the locality and grew up playing in the ruins of Ballytarsna-Hackett Castle, never thinking anyone would ever live in it, least of all her!! It's a very warm and romantic place to live and a great family home. It's a work in progress and we are very proud of the stage it is at now. We both enjoy meeting new people and we very much look forward to greeting you with tea and home made scones!
We look forward to welcoming you to Ballytarsna-Hackett Castle, our home. Aqua

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