Explore the Grounds
The parkland around Turlough Park is dotted with interesting features such as round towers, a Victorian iron greenhouse and gardens.
Turlough Park House and grounds
Visible from the museum grounds is a striking and distinctive round tower, one of five surviving in Co. Mayo, usually dated to the eleventh or twelfth centuries and associated with monastic sites. The church at Turlough is reputed to have been founded by St. Patrick.
At its largest, the Turlough estate consisted of almost 8,500 acres. Today the museum site contains many fine mature trees, a legacy from the parkland that was laid out for the original eighteenth century house (now in ruins) in a manner that was sympathetic to the contours of the land.
The ruins of the eighteenth century bow-fronted house are visible on the right hand side of the avenue near the entrance gate to Turlough Park.
In the mid-nineteenth century the gardens were re-designed and landscaped to Victorian fashion complementing the 1865 house on the hill. New features were incorporated including grass terraces, picnic islands, formal flowerbeds, a croquet lawn and a tennis court. The turlough was dammed to form a lake.
The modern freestanding glasshouse has been re-built on the original foundations of the Fitzgerald’s wooden glasshouse, re-using the original hand-fired floor tiles and iron roof cresting.
Richard Turner, the Dublin ironmaster who designed the Curvilinear Range at the National Botanic Gardens in Dublin, possibly designed the iron lean-to vinery adjoining the stables. The entrance gates were made in his Dublin iron foundry. The Victorian gardens and the parkland have been extensively restored.