+353 (0) 63 91300 reception@ballyhoura.org

Glenstal Abbey is a Benedictine monastery of the Congregation of the Annunciation located in Murroe, County Limerick. It is dedicated to Saint Joseph and Saint Columba. The abbey is located in and beside Glenstal Castle, a Normanesque castle built by the Barrington family.

The picturesque grounds include lakes, forests and an old walled, terraced garden which features a bible garden.

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The monastery runs an all-boys boarding secondary school on its grounds, Glenstal Abbey School, home to approximately two hundred students.   For visitors it is a wonderful place to explore the magnificent grounds, the gift shop, not to mention a tour of the icon chapel which is a real discovery for the visitor to glenstal


In the crypt of the church is a chapel with Orthodox icons, designed by the architect, Jeremy Williams. It is a unique sacred space reminding us that monasticism has its roots in the Christian east. In traditional Byzantine style, it takes the shape of a cross in a square with a central circle surmounted by a dome. Beneath the dome, in painted glass, the artist James Scanlon has depicted the mythical beasts of the Bible, symbols of the four Evangelists. The altar, in traditional Orthodox fashion, is in a small apse accessed by “royal doors”

Day Groups

The monks of Glenstal Abbey welcome groups who wish to visit the monastery and spend some time getting to know our place, our tradition and our life.

Typically groups arrive in time for the community mass with Gregorian Chant in Latin which is celebrated each weekday at 12.10pm, and on Sundays at 10.00am. This is followed either by lunch or tea/coffee and scones.

The tour begins with a brief introduction to monastic life and its beginnings at Glenstal in 1927.  The Abbey buildings include a Norman Revivalist castle, which is now home to the Abbey School. After a brief visit to the castle, you will be led through the Abbey grounds, which contain a great variety of trees and flowers. A favourite of many visitors is the seventeenth century Italian-style terraced walled garden, laid out between 1679 and 1681. The tour concludes with a visit to the crypt of the church which houses a Russo-Byzantine chapel, which houses our collection of Russian and Greek Icons.

There will also be the opportunity to visit the Abbey Gift Shop which has a large selection of religious goods and books, recordings by the Monks of Glenstal and our famous Glenstal Abbey Liqueur Truffles.

Cost and Donations

Our hospitality department operates on a donation basis and the suggested donation for an organised tour is €15 per person which includes tea/coffee and homemade scones.

Lunch can be arranged for visiting groups and costs €15 per person.

Tailor-made for you

We are happy to assist you in devising a day tailored to the specific needs of your group. Some groups like to have a spiritual talk by a member of the community or an opportunity to avail of the Sacrament of Reconciliation. Please contact us to discuss your requirements.

For more details about what we can offer or to make a booking please emailguestmaster@glenstal.org or call 061 621005

From Dublin/Limerick:

Coming from Dublin along the main Limerick motorway (M7), take Exit 28. On exiting you will be on a roundabout. Take the third exit marked Castletroy/Limerick (R445). Pass by Finnegans on the left, at the traffic lights turn left onto the R506 and the road is well sign-posted to both Murroe and Glenstal Abbey, about six miles from the main road. Coming from Limerick along the main Dublin road, pass over the new bridge at

Annacotty and take the turn to the right at the traffic lights, where the sign-post reads Glenstal Abbey.

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GROUNDS: Visitors can walk the Front and Back avenues at their leisure. The lands have a wide variety of specimen trees and flowers and are a wildlife sanctuary. Part of the remains of Ireland’s primitive oak forest lies along the edge of the Front Avenue. Please note that the school buildings and playing fields are not normally open to the public.

RECEPTION AND SHOP: A Reception area is located on the right hand side of the entrance arch. Washroom facilities are provided; regrettably teas and coffees are not available. There is a shop with a wide range of books and gifts and it is generally open daily from 9.00am until 5.00pm.

CHURCH: You are especially welcome to join the Community at times of prayer and for Massthough you may visit the Church at any time.

Glenstal Abbey Murroe, Co. Limerick, Ireland

Email: monks@glenstal.org or  guestmaster@glenstal.org

Telephone Within Ireland: 061 621000

From outside Ireland: +353 61 62100