Lynch's Castle
Lynch's Castle
3.5
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3.5
144 reviews
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26
Very good
50
Average
53
Poor
10
Terrible
5

retireeVancouver
Vancouver, Canada1,829 contributions
Jun 2023
Lynch's castle or Keep, now a bank, was, for me, just a photo opportunity of its architectural features on the exterior wall. The building stands out on the main street as its grey stone walls are a contrast to the building materials of the surrounding shops. I found these features of interest: The sculpture around the second and third floor "hooded" windows were high up so I needed to zoom in to see the detail of the design. Similarily for the animal faced gargoyles placed above these windows at roof level. Henry VII's coat of arms over the entrance door was eroded; one could miss it. This building, once a 16th C tower house/ fortified Keep was owned by a wealtly Anglo-Norman merchant family, the Lynches. They provided Galway with 80 mayors until Cromwell's capture of the town. It is remarkable that the city had not pushed over this building, but found a new use for it as a bank.
Written June 21, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

DeanMurphy2020
Orlando, FL7,549 contributions
Jul 2014 • Solo
Across from Eyre Square at 40 Shop Street is a tall gray structure. Now AIB bank since 1930, this impressive building came into being as a castle in the 15th Century. Construction began in 1484 (eight years before Columbus sailed the ocean blue). AIB may have chosen the rock-solid building to symbolize the bank’s integrity and strength during the Great Depression. I exchanged dollars for euros here, and had the chance to see a modern building inside an ancient structure. The exterior has been preserved and restored, an excellent example of how private businesses can preserve culture and architecture.
Written August 17, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Sarah C
Dallas, TX609 contributions
Aug 2012 • Couples
This is now a bank but you can admire the outside. It was closed when we saw it so I'm not sure if there is anything to see inside. This is the family home of the once mayor of Galway who found his son guilty of murder and hung him. The window where the son was hung can be seen from market street and is located in the garden/graveyard of st. Nicholas church.
Written September 3, 2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

magicbird1
New Hope, PA2 contributions
Jun 2018 • Friends
Fascinating story about the monkey and the infant. Lynch was a prominent family in Galway but Lynch's wife was unable to conceive a child, much to the family's grief. Lynch, who traveled extensively, brought back a monkey as pet. Then 7 years into marriage Lynch's wife did, to family's joy bear a child after they'd all given up hope. The child was still a newborn when a raging fire broke out on 2nd floor. No, no one "forgot" to get the baby, as another commenter wrote--they just couldn't reach the baby's room through the roaring flames. The mother was hysterical--they had to hold her back from running into the burning building. Everyone was grief-stricken in their belief that there was no hope for the infant son. Then the pet monkey appeared on the side of the building, emerging from a 3rd floor window. It climbed down and entered a 2nd floor window, the floor where the the baby's room was located and where the fire raged the worst. The monkey then re-emerged from the 2nd floor window and fell hard to the ground. The monkey then opened its arms and, lo and behold--to everyone's astonishment, there was the baby! This monkey had gone through smoke and fire just to save this human infant!. Lynch put the stone monument over the door to honor the monkey.
I don't believe that Lynch hanged his own son as someone here has written. From what I understood vigilantes hanged Lynch's son for the murder he was alleged to have committed.
This half-day trip to Galway, which included seeing Lynch's castle, was part of our 7-day trip/tour to Westport Ireland with our college alumni group. Galway was worth about 3-4 hours of time (add more if you want to shop there) including a meal. However, I wish we'd hurried the waiters along because we lost about 1/2 hour in a slow restaurant. But looking at the monkey/baby monument itself was only worth about 10 minutes because there was nothing inside the building itself to see. I will try to add a photo but currently my photos are not in the right format.
Written July 5, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

HowlnBubba
Key Largo, FL1,449 contributions
Sep 2019
The building dates from 1490, with later renovations. It is possibly the only remaining structure of Spanish influence in old Galway city, and is the only extant complete secular Medieval building in Galway. It is now a bank branch and doesn't really look like much else. The facade's stonework includes gargoyles and the crests of King VII, the Lynches (the most powerful of the 14 ruling Galway tribes), and the related Fitzgeralds of Kildare. In 1493 James Lynch Fitzstephen, Mayor of Galway, reportedly hanged his own son for the murder of a Spanish sailor, because nobody else would perform the execution; giving rise to the terms "to lynch" and "lynch mob". This is a colorful and anecdotal tale that may be true, except that the more plausible theory is that lynch and lynch mob originated with an 18th century Virginia judge named Lynch.
Interesting place anyway.
Written October 2, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

FlyingTheCoop
Australia429 contributions
Jan 2019 • Couples
There might be a good monkey story behind the history of Lynch’s Castle but an attraction it is not! We walked straight past it in our first attempt to see the castle as the reality is that it is now a bank with an ATM machine sliced into the side of the historic stone walls. The facade is beautiful, but so are many other facades in Galway. You will need to be looking up as you traverse the pedestrian mall to get the full benefit of the architecture.
Written January 12, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Mary C
Galway, Ireland19 contributions
Oct 2017 • Friends
This building is now a bank in the centre of shop street Galway. The ground floor is open to public but I would suggest getting a tourist guide to explain the history of building when visiting the city
Written January 2, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Elonamiss
Athens, Greece40 contributions
Feb 2017 • Friends
Well.. during our visit I had to ask in order to find it...we passed by several times but never "noticed the castle" ( we are observers) but only the bank.
Written February 11, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Sojourner-Texas_USA
Hamilton, TX162 contributions
Sep 2016 • Friends
You can't miss Lynch's Castle if you are walking the tourist walk in downtown Galway. What you see today is actually a "fortified town house" rather than a traditional "castle". Now it houses an active bank operation. And yes, it is the site where the Lord Mayor of the city hung his own son for violation of the law. But, if you turn right and walk down the small sidestreet to the next corner- then turn left and walk down to the wall of the old church, you will see the "actual window and wall where the hanging took place. It seems the city fathers long ago relocated that section of the castle wall to a new site to preserve it as a monument. So, the bank building is on the actual site of the hanging, but the window and wall are actually on display at the old church yard a block away. Interesting to see either way,
Written October 18, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Mike191919
Philadelphia, PA287 contributions
Aug 2013 • Family
This limestone Gothic style building is a nice addition to the architecture along Shop Street and certainly provides some history to the street. Walk on by, stop and take a picture, and step inside if the bank is open (it is currently a bank). There is not much else to it. If you are interested in Galway history, it is a good complement to any reading you have done prior or will do after, but Lynch's Castle by itself will not provide much. I think it is great the bank has maintained this historic building but I would not necessarily call it a tourist attraction.
Written November 25, 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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Lynch's Castle - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (with Photos)