One of Maynooths oldest surviving monuments, Taghadoe Round Tower was part of an old monastic settlement and dates back to the 6th Century.
Its primary purpose was defence against local pillagers and Viking invasions but it was also used as a mark of the existence of a religious settlement. Among the ruins stands an early monastic church. The round tower itself has been renovated to some extent, however its roof was never replaced. A door stands 12ft above ground level where during times of invasion or plundering, when the warning was raised, the monks would gather all their sacred possessions and climb into the tower and pull the ladder up. This meant that there was only one entrance to defend which would have been relatively out of reach of the enemy.
The tower was used for about 1000 years but was left in ruins by the 17th Century.
The Taghadoe Round Tower is featured on the Kildare Monastic Trail available from abarta.
How to get there
It lies east of the R407, 8km southwest of Maynooth. Access to the site is free & parking is extremely limited.
OSI Discovery Series Map 50: N 9234 3456.
Latitude: 53° 21' 12" N / Longitude: 6° 36' 47" W