Limerick is the gateway to Ireland's scenic West. An ancient city, with a charter predating that of London, Limerick epitomises Ireland's industrial and cultural renaissance. Limerick city is the capital of the Shannon Region and the third largest city in the Republic of Ireland.
Its City Charter was granted in 1197. 1691 saw the capture of the city and the signing of the Treaty of Limerick. Its colourful and fascinating history is evident everywhere and proudly maintained. Although small enough to offer a sense of intimacy, Limerick, with its university, museums, citadel and cathedral is undoubtedly a cosmopolitan metropolis.
The city of Limerick boasts galleries, theatre, excellent restaurants and a world class museum housed in the restored Custom House. King John's Castle bestrides the Shannon at one of its many bridges while St Mary's Cathedral is a small scale gothic masterpiece dating from the 12th century.
Only a few miles from the city, the University of Limerick has played a major part in Ireland and Limerick's rebirth. Set on a magnificent parkland campus, beside the Shannon, the University is the centrepiece of the National Technological Park. Above all, Limerick is a haven for Irish traditional music and you can find a lively 'session' on any night of the week. For more information on Limerick visit VisitLimerick.com.
Tangible remains of the past inhabitants go back 800 years to the building of King John's Castle. Nearby is the medieval St. Mary's Cathedral, and preserved on the opposite bank of the river is the Treaty Stone. Limerick boasts a fine crescent of splendid Georgian town houses built in the late 18th century.
The Hunt Museum contains a unique collection of archaeological material and works of art, which were assembled by John Hunt, and housed in the renovated Custom House. And, of course, a city that contains all this also provides a generous selection of the best shops, restaurants, hotels, pubs and sporting activities.A brief taste of what may be found in Limerick City would include:
King John's Castle
King John's Castle is situated in the heart of Limerick's Medieval Heritage Precinct, on the River Shannon at "Kings Island". The Castle was built between 1200 and 1210 and was repaired and extended many times over the following centuries. King John's Castle remains a most impressive Anglo-Norman fortification. It retains many of the pioneering features, which made its construction unique for its day.
The Hunt Museum exhibits one of Ireland's greatest private collections of arts and antiquities. Donated to the people of Ireland by John and Gertrude Hunt, their generosity ranks highly in the nations history. Housed in the elegant 18th century Custom House, the Hunt Collection reflects not only the Celtic past but also includes important pieces such as the Leonardo da Vinci horse, the Mary Queen of Scots cross and one of the original "30 pieces of silver". Paintings in the collection include works by Renoir, Picasso, Gauguin, O'Conor, and Yeats.
St. Mary's Cathedral
The Cathedral of St Mary Blessed Virgin has had a long and eventful history. It was founded in 1168 on the site of a palace donated by Domhnall Briain King of Munster. Experts believe that parts of the palace are incorporated into the present structure of the Cathedral. The Cathedral has seen many changes as the city expanded around it and it remains today the oldest and most historic building in Limerick.
The Treaty Stone
Limerick City's most famous monument, the Treaty Stone, gets its name from the tradition that The Treaty of Limerick was signed on the stone itself. The Stone is decorated with the image of the castle opposite surmounted by a dome and cross, showing that Limerick was a cathedral city.
For further information on what to do and see when in Limerick, contact the Tourist Information Centre, located in Arthur’s Quay in the City Centre. The centre is open all year round and is the ideal starting point for visitors to the city.
Telephone: +353 - 61 - 317 522