Kinnitty Offaly Ireland
The picturesque village of Kinnitty [Kinnity] is located at the crossroads of Ireland midway between Dublin in the east Galway on the west coast, Belfast in the north and Cork in the south. It’s central location makes it the ideal base to explore Ireland. In less than 2 hours you can be in the Cliffs of Moher, Connemara, The Rock of Cashel or Kilkenny.
Variously spelled in ancient documents as Cinneity, Kennettys, Killenitty and in Gaelic Cinneitigh is thought to have derived its name from the head of St Ita.
History of Kinnitty Village
Some time after the plantation of Offaly in 1619 Kinnitty came in to the possession of the Winter family. The present Castle, Kinnitty Castle was built in 1811 by the Bernards and called Castle Bernard. It was around the Bernard family estates that the present village grew from a mere 5 houses at the end of the 18th century to its peak of 98 houses in 1841. it now has just 128. The Castle has been transformed into a Castle Hotel and is well known for romantic fairy tale weddings. As well as having the wonderful Kinnitty Castle Hotel with it’s restaurants and bars the village has two quaint pubs, a village grocery shop, a cafe, mountain biking centre, 2 churches , a school a children’s playground, a hurling pitch and it’s very own Kinnitty Pyramid which you can see from Ardmore Country House.
There are many great reasons to visit Kinnitty. Being situated at the foot of the Slieve Bloom Mountains it is an ideal base for walking, cycling, mountain biking or horse-riding. The Slieve Bloom Mountain Bike trails starts in the village. There are loop walking trails at Kinnitty trail head just south of the village of Kinnitty on the R420 and an Eco walk loop trail at Knockbarron Wood. The Slieve Bloom Way log distance trail can be accessed from Kinnitty.
Ardmore Country House Bed and Breakfast
Ardmore Country House is located on the edge of the village and enjoys wonderful views through the large picture windows of the magical Slieve Bloom Mountains and the Pyramid at the rear of the Church of Ireland.
Slieve Bloom Mountains
The picturesque village nestles at the foot of Knocknamann which is on the western slopes of the Slieve Bloom Mountains. Knocknamann is the site where the Festival of Bealtaine was held in pre-christian times. The Slieve Bloom Mountains are steeped in history and folklore, from megalithic times though Ireland’s golden era of Saints & Scholars to more modern history of settlement and conflict of the O’Carrolls. According to legend the Slieve Bloom Mountains was home to Fionn Mac Cumhaill where as a child he lived with his mother for the first 7 years of his life.
Kinnitty Pyramid, the only one of its kind in Ireland, is situated at he rear of the Church of Ireland in the village and is visible from Ardmore House bed and breakfast. It stands 30 feet in height and was built as a crypt by Lt. Col Richard Wesley Bernard for his family on his return from Egypt in the mid 1800’s. Building began in 1830 and was completed in 1834. It is permanently sealed now. The doors are 3 inches in width and made of steel that lead down 5 steps to the inside tomb.It is the resting place of 6 members of the Bernard familly of Kinnitty (Kinity) Castle or Castle Bernard. The first was Mary Bernard and the last burial took place in 1907.
Leap Castle Ireland’s most haunted castle is just 6 miles from Ardmore House Kinnitty on the R421, It was a former castle of the [email protected] Carroll Clan.
Three miles from Kinnitty is the lovely village of Cadamstown one of a necklace of lovely villages that dots the lowlands of the Slieve Bloom Mountains. The Silver River Nature/Eco Trail, which starts from here, is a geological reserve of great beauty and botanical interest. We will give detailed maps to walk the trail.
Other attractions within an hours drive of Kinnitty are Clonmacnoise, Athlone Castle, the Rock of Cashel, Kilkenny city. If you are exploring the rugged west coast of Ireland and wild Atlantic Way, why not stop a night or two to experience the contrast. Kinnitty is far removed from the commercialism of busy resorts like Killarney, Dingle, Galway or indeed Dublin, still retaining a charm and pace more reminiscent of Ireland of the past than that of today.