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County Kildare.



(Castle of the kings.)

Naas is the county town of Kildare; its Irish name Nás na Ríogh, means 'Castle of the kings' signifies that it was once one of the royal seats of the kings of Leinster, who are said to have ruled from a castle on the large north motte in the town. It became a medieval Anglo-Norman fortress and is now a prosperous town.

St. Patrick is said to have camped on the site of the present Roman Catholic church.

The Anglo-Normans fortified the town in the early 14th century, it was burnt by Edward Bruce during his failed campaign to conquer Ireland.

About a miles south-west of the town are the unfinished remains of Jigginstown House which was to have been a palace for Charles I, work stopped in 1641 when he lost his head, all that remain are the cellars and ground floor rooms in a dangerous state.

Naas in common with much of Kildare owes its prosperity to the racehorse industry, regular meetings are held on the local course and also at nearby Punchestown. In part of the grounds of the latter is the site of a prehistoric standing stone, the tallest in Ireland standing 8 meter (27 ft) excavations in the 1930's revealed a bronze age burial site at its base.

Look for other places to visit in County Kildare.