On our way from Waterford to Cork, we visited Lismore, a small town which was once the site of a major monastic university founded in the 7th century CE. The first castle was built there by Prince John in 1185. The current castle is mostly 19th century, built as the family home of the Dukes of Devonshire. The castle is not open to the public but the magnificent gardens are.
On a series of sloping sites, a lush landscape of formal and informal spaces has been planted within the castle's 17th century outer walls. Amidst the planting are a number of subtly located works of art, including "The Irishman" (1907) by Edwin Whitney Smith and "Hunting" (2001) by Bridget McCrum. There are also two fragments of the Berlin Wall and an avenue of massive yew trees, which is said to be where Edmund Spenser wrote The Faerie Queen in 1590.