Malahide Castle and grounds comprise 109 ha (270 acres) of natural, rolling parkland. The area has been sensitively enhanced by the addition of walks, picnic areas, children's playground, playing fields, cricket pitch, tennis courts, 9-hole par 3 golf course, 18-hole pitch and putt course and toilets. The fact that ownership of this demesne was in the same family for 800 years makes this park unique. The Talbots were in residence here from 1185 until 1975. The oldest part of the present castle is a 14th-century keep-like tower. The Great Hall was added in 1475 with subsequent additions undertaken from the 15th to the 19th centuries. The principal rooms on view are the Oak Room, the Great Hall, the Drawing room, the Library, the Nursery and the bedrooms.
The National Portrait Collection of the National Gallery of Ireland is housed in this beautiful environment, adding immeasurable interest to the house. Modern additions include a tourist office, restaurant, coffee shop and craft shop. A purpose-built museum in the castle gardens houses the Fry Model Railway, a unique collection of hand-made models of Irish trains. The castle is operated in association with Dublin Tourism.
The Fry model railway displays a superb collection of hand-built running models of Irish trains. The display traces the history of Irish railways through a scale model of a grand transport complex, which includes stations, bridges, trams, buses, barges and boats. Situated in the grounds of Malahide Castle, Ireland's largest working miniature railway covers an area of 2,500 sq. ft. This delightful collection is a treat for railway enthusiasts, children and adults alike.
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