Journey through the epochs within the walls of one of Ireland's oldest and enduring Abbeys. 

Nestled within the heart of County Mayo lies one of its best-kept secrets – the historic Ballintubber Abbey. This venerable monument has withstood the test of time for over 800 years, standing as a testament to Mayo’s hidden treasures. With its captivating architecture and compelling historical narratives, the abbey beckons explorers to unveil its mysteries. 

From its roots in Augustinian heritage to the intriguing chronicles of the notorious Priest Hunter, whose remains rest within the abbey grounds, Ballintubber Abbey unfolds as a destination of profound allure. Notably, it shares a storied connection with the legendary Pirate Queen, Grace O’Malley, also known as Granuaile, adding an extra layer of fascination to its aura. A visit here stands as an indispensable highlight of any County Mayo expedition. 

The foundation of the abbey traces back to 1216, established on this very site by Cathal O’Connor, the High King of Connacht. Yet, preceding this august edifice was the inaugural church founded by none other than St. Patrick himself in 441 AD, marking an unbroken chain of Christian presence spanning nearly 1600 years. The abbey endured the agony of a devastating fire, orchestrated by Cromwellian soldiers in 1653, reducing its grandeur to bare stone walls. Remarkably, even in its roofless state, the abbey remained a beacon of faith, hosting Sunday masses for a staggering 236 years. Restoration came in two phases – first in 1889 and then in 1966. A historic feat, it stands as the first successfully revitalized ecclesiastical ruin from the penal times in Ireland. 

 Amplifying the Ballintubber experience is The Pine Rack, a traditional country workshop and showroom situated just across from the historic abbey. For those seeking culinary delights, Corley’s Abbey Lodge awaits opposite the abbey entrance, inviting patrons to savor a delectable meal amid the rich historical tapestry of the region. 

Why wait? Contact us now to secure a tour of this historic Abbey, immersing yourself in its remarkable architecture and absorbing the enthralling historical narratives firsthand. Group discounts are available for gatherings of 15 or more, ensuring an enriching experience for all.

  • Journey through the epochs within the walls of one of Ireland’s oldest and enduring Abbeys. 
  • Embark on an exploration spanning over 800 years of Irish history, heritage, and architectural transformation. 
  • Unearth the Abbey’s inception in 1216 and the rationale behind its recognition as the Royal Abbey. 
  • Discover the instances of the Abbey’s attempted destruction, subsequent reconstruction, and the steadfast local tradition of celebrating mass within its roofless confines for over 300 years. 
  • Investigate St. Patrick’s indelible impact on society and the Abbey’s intertwining with Croagh Patrick. 
  • Immerse yourself in the captivating narratives of Seán na Sagart, the local priest hunter. 
  • Reveal the connections between Grace O’Malley (Graunaile) and Ballintubber Abbey. 
  • Witness why the Abbey stands as a preferred wedding venue, even attracting prominent celebrities. 
  • A destination catering to families: Engage youngsters with the Kids Trail, encouraging them to roam the grounds, decipher clues, and absorb historical insights. Upon completion, they earn a certificate of achievement. 
  • Situated just 20km from Westport, nestled among Castlebar, Claremorris, and Ballinrobe, with a strategic location along the N84 near Castlebar and Ireland West Airport Knock. 

Ballintubber Abbey is open daily from 9.30am to 9pm all year round.


Admission to the Grounds and Abbey are FREE 

Guided Tours Available Daily for only €8 for Groups of Individuals  


Contact us now to Book a Guided Tour or Tóchar Walk 

Tel: 094 90 30934 



Useful Information

Gift Shop and Visitor Center onsite 

Free Carpark, Accessible toilet Facilities 

Bar and Restaurant adjacent to the Abbey Entrance

Getting There

Nestled in the heart of Mayo, between Castlebar (13km), Westport (19km) , Ballinrobe (18km) and Claremorris (23km).   


In the small community of Ballintubber, just off the N84 between Castlebar and Ballinrobe.  


Map Location: 53.756654, -9.282831
Contact Ballintubber Abbey

Ballintubber, Claremorris, Co. Mayo, Ireland. F12 W584 

Eircode: F12 W584 
T: +353 (0) 94 90 30934
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