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Historic Tower House -Wildest place to stay at Roaring Water Bay

Bedrooms 3
Separate WCs1
Space 1,291 sq. ft.
Property type castle
Minimum Stay 3 - 7 nights


About the property

360 degree sea view, 14 meter high medieval tower with 3 (bedrooms).

This is a wonderful rustic property, which is in a magnificent setting with dramatic views (and sometimes dramatic weather!!), it is warm and dry inside thanks to the underfloor heating and Aga range. It is mainly open plan with two open mezzanines and then a more private bright and little apartment at the top of the building. Renovated by Stefanie Jaax in 2000, she aimed at a combination of the medieval with the contemporary; while the ground and first (half) floor are restored in the authentic style, using original building material, but keeping the rough structures and inner wall textures as well as the 8m high room appearance. On the roof accessible through an inner wall staircase is a newly built apartment with a glass westerly facing front and an enclosed terrace. The old French open fireplace in the kitchen/living area on ground floor with the old style AGA cooking range provide a cosy, atmospheric living space. The kitchen is equipped with dishwasher, Belfast sink, integrated wooden cupboards and fridge, two big worktops and a large antique oak dinner table (3m) with benches in the center.

A washing machine is located in a separate shed where storage and space for drying clothes is provided. There is also a shower located in the shed.

Sleeping facilities:

Three wooden beds are on the loft area below the vaulted ceiling and one double sofa bed is on the first floor landing, all fairly open spaces within this massive 8 m high inner medieval space (children love this). There are comfortable futon mattresses for those who want to sleep in the modern top room on the floor with underfloor heating and enjoy more privacy and enjoy watching the stars. There is a shower and toilet in a separate bathroom next to the top room and one toilet on the first floor. And there is another shower in the shed which is perfect for warming up and getting rid of the salt and grit after a day's sailing and boating on the water.

The roof terrace is sheltered with laminated glass panels and is ideal for private and undisturbed sunbathing (weather and wind permitted). Baltimore and Heir Island can be easily accessed either by rib or ferry, boat hire is also available in Baltimore. There is a harbour pier in walking distance and access to beaches and the sea. There is internet access available all year around. The castle is on cliffs, surrounded by green fields, one of this containing an art installation 'die Traumstätte'. (the place of dreaming)

More Details

Stephanie Jaax
Member since: 2013
Speaks English, French, German
Response time:
Within a day
Response rate:
Calendar last updated:
16 July, 2018

About Stephanie Jaax

I have inherited this tower house in 2000 as it belonged to the land of White Hall house, which my parents bought in 1962. After the main house was sold, I renovated this ruin which required a lot of patience and persistence with all the official procedures I had to undertake as to be granted permission, this being a listed historical building. During these first years I was spending the summer holidays with my family in a caravan on site in order to oversee the building work. No electricity or running water was available during these first years, but it was important for all of us to pass through this period in order to appreciate the castle now in it' s final state.

I speak French, German and English so please feel free to write to me in the language you feel comfortable.

Stephanie Jaax purchased this castle in 2000

Why Stephanie Jaax chose Ballydehob

I chose to renovate this ruin because I spent my holidays in West Cork since 1962. This area is still unspoilt by the developments of the Celtic tiger that invaded Ireland in the 90's and still reminds me of the country I knew in the sixties and seventies. The tower house is ideal for someone who appreciates a combination of culture and nature, who seeks a hide-away from stress and daily routines and who loves sailing and the sea. A laser dinghy is available, other dinghies are available for rent in Baltimore. The different islands in the bays are ideal for picnic or overnight camping.

What makes this castle unique

When I first sat down in the new top room of Rincolisky Castle shortly after it was finished, I said to the builder, that I am the luckiest woman in West Cork to be able to enjoy such a view. Even at night time, when I sleep on my Futon mattress on the floor, I communicate with the moon and the stars, which seem so close. The beauty of the moon's reflection on the calm water during the night is spectacular, during the day it is the sun lighting up the water. Opposite lies Kilcoe castle, facing Roaring Water Bay, it's real beauty can only be seen from the sea, not from the land.

Guestbook comments from the owner


I just wanted to drop you a note to tell you how much we enjoyed your beautiful castle. What a treasure. We had a great time! We met Terri Kearney and the photographer that took the pic of your castle for the Lock Hyne book. We enjoyed your neighbors, the cows, and waved to Jeremy Irons across the bay. We made our own Medieval feast one night and ate by candle light. The sunrises, sunsets, and even rain storms were magical from the top level. My husband and I marveled every day at the reconstruction that you did. It must have been an unbelievable undertaking - and the results are fabulous.

Thank you for sharing it with us. I wish you many, many happy years in your amazing castle.

Aug 2013
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Accommodation and facilities for this holiday castle in Ballydehob in County Cork

Property Type:
  • castle
  • Self-catering
  • Housekeeper Optional
Floor Area:
  • 1291 sq. ft.
House Rules:
  • Max. occupancy: 7
  • children welcome ...
  • pets not allowed
  • smoking allowed ...
Location Type:
  • rural
  • waterfront
  • Adventure
  • Away From It All
  • Family
  • Farm Holidays
  • Historic
  • Sports & Activities
  • Fireplace ...
  • Hair Dryer
  • Heating ...
  • Internet ...
  • Linens Provided
  • Living Room
  • Parking
  • Towels Provided
  • Wireless Internet
  • Coffee Maker
  • Dishes & Utensils
  • Dishwasher
  • Kitchen
  • Microwave
  • Oven ...
  • Pantry Items
  • Refrigerator
  • Hob ...
  • Toaster
  • Dining Area
  • seating for 8 people
  • 2 Bathrooms
  • 1 Separate WC
  • Bathroom 1 - Toilet , Shower Enclosure
    Bathroom 2 - Toilet
    Bathroom 3 - Shower Enclosure , new shower in outdoor building
  • 1 bathroom on top floor, (shower no bath tub) 1 toilet with sink on first floor, 1 shower and basin in outdoor building
  • 3 Bedrooms, Sleeps 7
  • Bedroom 1 - 1 Double Bed
    Bedroom 3 - 1 Double Bed
    Bedroom 2 - 2 Single Bed , 1 Sofa bed/Futon
  • One double bed-couch on first mezzanine, 2 beds and one Futon on second mezzanine and one double bed in top room
  • Books
  • DVD Player
  • Stereo
  • Toys
  • Video Library
  • Terrace
  • Golf
  • Garden
  • Barbecue
  • wheelchair inaccessible ...
Pool / Spa:
  • Communal Pool
  • bay
  • cinemas
  • library
  • live theatre
  • marina
  • museums
  • naturist beach
  • playground
  • pond
  • recreation centre
  • restaurants
  • ruins
Leisure Activities:
  • beachcombing
  • bird watching
  • eco tourism
  • horse riding
  • paddle boating
  • scenic drives
  • sight seeing
  • walking
  • whale watching
Local Services & Businesses:
  • ATM/bank
  • Babysitter
  • fitness centre
  • groceries
  • hospital
  • laundrette - serviced
  • massage therapist
  • medical services
Sports & Adventure Activities:
  • cycling
  • deepsea fishing
  • equestrian events
  • fishing
  • freshwater fishing
  • golf
  • hiking
  • mountain biking
  • pier fishing
  • sailing
  • diving
  • bay fishing
  • surfing
  • swimming
  • wind-surfing
The medieval tower is situated in a unique location. But it is still 500 years old, thus do not expect the comfort of a modern house. It is suitable for individuals who apprechiate the beauty of the landscape and the historic monument. The different bays with all their little islands is ideal for sailing. The rural setting in combination with the amenities of nearby towns and villages like Schull, Durrus, Skibbereeen and Baltimore are ideal for a holiday in Ireland.


Excellent! 4.6/5 -
(16 traveller reviews)

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Historic Tower House -Wildest place to stay at Roaring Water Bay
average rating of 4.625 based on 18 reviews

Truly unique! Exactly as described!

  • 5 of 5

We absolutely loved it!

  • Review Submitted: 28-May-2018
  • Date of Stay: May 2018
  • Source: HomeAway
Owner's Response: They were a pleasure to have as guests in my Castle. They are very welcome to come back anytime in the future.
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An Incredible Experience - not just accommodation and not for everyone

  • 5 of 5

The restoration of this Irish (O'Driscoll) castle was a labor of love, with perfect antique furnishings. A stay here should be the same. Mobility impaired doesn't work - steep stone steps to the toilets (both of them). 3 beds were ok; sofa bed not so much. Has more conveniences than the original; plumbing is a challenge - shower and washer in boat house - no dryer. I recommend it if you don't have unrealistic expectations - it's a 900 year old tower home. But you should have seen our teens live streaming to their friends about living in a castle! We saw a fox, heard swans calling, basked in the incredible sunsets and peaceful beauty all around. We didn't do the tourist Ireland and this was the culminating experience. Niav was a wonderful hostess, leading us into the castle and showing us how everything worked. Stovetop cooking is easier if you are not familiar with the AGA. Kitchen was well furnished. Whitewash flakes a little powder off the walls, but it wasn't a problem at all.The orange on the castle across the bay is stone preservative and will gradually fade. The castle is pretty remote, but only 13 km from Skibbereen (explore there) and easy to get to Brow and Mizen Head, Baltimore, and a lot of other interesting places. We would go back if ever we could. Oh, we had unusually warm weather and upper room got very hot - because it has glass walls.

  • Review Submitted: 01-Jul-2018
  • Date of Stay: June 2018
  • Source: HomeAway
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Unique and Relaxing

  • 4 of 5

Rincolisky Tower sits in the most amazing part of Ireland. "God's Country" as one local described it. The castle was as expected. It's old, very old, so no surprises on any aspect of the tower itself. Yes, there will be damp on the walls, yes, it will get cool at night, yes you will hear strange noises creaking and groaning from the walls and floorboards but once you crank up the fires, fill your belly full of food and drink it's a wonderful place to be. Definitely a great spot to share with a bunch of friends or family for a unique and different experience. The surrounding area and small towns to explore is ideal. Aside from the obvious and expected challenges that come with living in a 500yr-old tower castle, what a great place to stay. The owners have done a reasonably good job renovating and I am sure it suits their personal requirements however as a holiday rental I think there needs to be more practical amenities and ongoing maintenance in a place this old to ensure quality and value for $. The upper conservatory is great, all glass windows and a view for miles. Because of the exposure to the sun and subsequent cold (through the glass-no blinds) a number of the floorboards are warped and buckled, some with nails popping out which is pretty dangerous when you're walking around in socks or bear feet. For some strange reason the outdoor area on the rooftop wasn't leveled with a gradient for run-off so water pools in this area after it has rained, made worse by the fact that the roof of the conservatory has no gutters so rain run's straight off the roof and into the patio area. A very strange renovation choice to not include gutters. Maybe it's a heritage thing? The showerhead was broken so unless you're a 3ft leprechaun or can squat for long periods of time showers were a hassle but not as much as the deadly polished slate floor of the bathroom. The slate looks good on the walls but makes absolutely no sense to have on the floor of a wet area. With just a drop of water it was as dangerous as black ice. I took a hectic spill simply stepping from the shower to grab my towel. Not enjoyable at all so tread carefully. The tower has a great kitchen/dining area on the ground floor. There's a killer dining table that seats 12, at least. There is an Arga Oven which looks great in the kitchen but unless you have one at home, or know how to use one it is basically of no real use. All up a good stay but could use upgrades/maintenance as a holiday rental.

  • Review Submitted: 20-May-2018
  • Date of Stay: May 2018
  • Source: HomeAway
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  • 5 of 5

A wonderfully authentic experience - climbing the tower and watching the sea turn from pale green to silver during the course of the day was truly breathtaking, and waking up to this view was even better!

  • Review Submitted: 09-Apr-2018
  • Date of Stay: April 2018
  • Source: HomeAway
Owner's Response: Hello Maria, thank you for your review. sorry to hear that ESB (they are hopeless- very expensive but offering a lousy service) cut off all electricity in the area. But due to this you got the 'real' experience what life in these castles was 500 years ago- without the commodities of contemporary life. Glad you still enjoyed it! Kind regards Stephanie
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Very unique property. A great way to experience Ireland

  • 4 of 5

We loved it and the views were outstanding.

  • Review Submitted: 11-Jun-2017
  • Date of Stay: May 2017
  • Source: HomeAway
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Pictures Don't Do It Justice

  • 5 of 5

Spent an awesome week here with my sister. The castle was as advertised, but the view from the top with the changing Irish skies was amazing. If you're lucky enough to catch a sunset here, you will never forget it.

This vacation is not for everyone - people that have trouble getting around on their own, small children, and people that like to be close to attractions might want to skip this place. People that are reasonably fit, are adventurous, enjoy scenery and peace, and want an authentic experience - this is THE place. There are two wood-burning fireplaces (extra firewood can be carted in via a wheelbarrow from the out building, which is also where you'll find the clothes washer). The hot water tank is only big enough to support short showers (~10 min or less), so wash quickly. The kitchen floor is heated (as is the floor in the top bedroom), which was an awesome surprise after walking down two stories on unheated stairs.

You will need a car at this location.

The caretaker was fabulous - when we had trouble with our rental car, she was able to direct the rental company (with our replacement car) to the castle in the middle of the night (apparently providing GPS coordinates is insufficient for Sixt). She even gave us a lift into town for provisions while we were stranded.

The wind often howls around the castle at night, so be prepared for the eerie ambiance that the noise can produce. It's a castle, and it feels like it with the furnishings and the candles, sconces, and lanterns that you can light. We found everything we needed in the kitchen (we cooked a nice steak dinner our last night there - thanks again Nancy!).

While it's not centrally located, it's not a bad home base for investigating the Beara and Dingle peninsulas, which will upon sight give you insight into the true meaning of "breathtaking."

I would highly recommend this home for the right type of vacationer. Thank you so much to the owner for sharing this property with the world! It's a one-of-a-kind experience that we will never forget!

  • Review Submitted: 27-Nov-2016
  • Date of Stay: October 2016
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
Owner's Response: Thank you for writing this really realistic view of the castle. I apprechiate that you took the effort to do it. I am happy that you enjoyed your stay and you are always welcome to come back anytime you like. Kind regards Stefanie Jaax
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Nearest Airport
100 Kilometres
Cork Airport
Nearest Barpub
1 Kilometres
Minihan's Bar
Nearest Ferry
100 Kilometres
Cork Ferry
Nearest Golf
8 Kilometres
Nearest Train
100 Kilometres
Cork Railway Station
Nearest Motorway
100 Kilometres
Nearest Restaurant
8 Kilometres
LissArd House
Car: necessary

Description of Rincolisky Castle

Located at the edge of Roaring Water Bay, this 500 year old tower of Rincolisky Castle is surrounded by the green fields of the still untouched scenery of West Cork.

Across the bay lies Kilcoe Castle, both share a similar history.

Constructed by the O’Driscoll clan around 1495 on a rock,

(see front page of ‘O’Driscolls’ Past and Present’), Rincolisky Castle overlooks the beautiful islands of Heir, Cape Clear and Sherkin. These are the largest and most inhabited of the hundred Carbery islands.


Prices & Availability

Prices for this holiday castle in Ballydehob, Ireland

Rental Basis:
per property
Owner accepts payment in:
Convert Currency
Rental Period Minimum Price Additional Nights Weekend Night Weekly Monthly * Event Price
1 May 2018 - 30 Sep 2018
7 night minimum stay
for 7 nights
Notes: Rates are based on 6 guests; add £45 per night, per additional guest
1 Oct 2018 - 30 Apr 2019
3 night minimum stay
for 3 nights
Notes: Rates are based on 6 guests; add £45 per night, per additional guest

Additional pricing information

cleaning £53.43
Refundable Damage Deposit £178.11

No extra charges are required

Owner's Cancellation Policy

100% refund for cancellations more than 30 days before check-in date.
Ask Owner a Question

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