Famous Movie Locations in Ireland

 Taylor McIntyre / © TripSavvy

Movie locations in Ireland are extremely common. Tax incentives and stunning landscapes have made Ireland the go-to place for many producers. 

Ireland has also a tradition of film production. Many major movies were filmed here, with the Emerald Isle doubling as anything from Roman Britain to post-apocalyptic Northern England. And Dublin standing in for London, Boston, and even Berlin! Here are some of the places you might have seen in movies.

County Antrim

  • Giant 's Causeway and Causeway Coast
    • Hellboy II - The Golden Army
    • Jackie Chan's The Medallion

County Carlow

  • Huntingdon Castle
    • Barry Lyndon - A Kubrick location in Ireland

County Cavan

  • Redhills
    • The Playboys

County Clare

  • Cliffs of Moher
    • Hear My Song - Landscape shots were used in this movie
    • The Princess Bride - The cliffs of Moher featured as the Cliffs of Insanity, and that was before they even had the high prices

County Cork

  • Castletownsend
    • War of the Buttons - Several street scenes were filmed here.
  • Cork City
    • Angela's Ashes - Yes, the Limerick epic was partially filmed in Cork!
  • Union Hall
    • War of the Buttons
  • Youghal
    • Moby Dick (John Huston, 1956) - Standing in as New Bedford, Massachusetts

County Dublin

  • Ballymun
    • Into the West - The grim suburb provided the fitting background to this tale of youthful dreams and schemes
  • Dublin (Just a selection from the many productions in the city, many filmed in Georgian Dublin)
    • The Commitments
    • The General
    • Jackie Chan's The Medallion - Scenes in Dublin Castle were enlivened by a chase through an (in reality non-existent) café in the courtyard
    • Michael Collins
    • My Boy Jack
    • Penny Dreadful (TV drama)
    • Ripper Street (TV drama)
    • The Snapper
    • Tara Road - Standing in for New York at times, a Dublin tour bus (with right-hand drive) was even clad in NYC markings
    • The Tudors (TV drama)
    • The Van
    • Veronica Guerin
  • Howth Harbour
    • Pater Brown
  • Kilmainham Gaol
    • The Italian Job - Noel Coward's "home away from home" in the original movie
  • Smithfield Market
    • The Spy Who Came in From the Cold - Standing in for Berlin with a replica of Checkpoint Charlie
  • Temple Bar
    • Far and Away - representing Boston
  • Trinity College
    • Educating Rita - As a "typical English university" nonetheless

County Galway

  • Aran Islands
    • Man of Aran - The 1934 "documentary" has some unhistorical, staged scenes while purporting to be a truthful portrait of island life. 
    • Father Ted - The aerial view of "Craggy Island" at the start of every episode of the hysterical clerical sitcom was actually a bit of the Aran Islands.
  • Galway City
    • Black Narcissus (1947)
    • Jack Taylor (TV drama)
    • The Guard
    • The Mackintosh Man
  • Leenane
    • The Field
  • Roundstone
    • The Matchmaker

County Kerry

  • Derrynane
    • Excalibur - Some scenes were shot here
  • Dún Chaoin or Dunquin
    • Far and Away - Used in some outdoor shots
    • Ryan's Daughter - The village in the film was, however, only a purpose-built set

County Kildare

  • Leixlip
    • The Blue Max - The planes were flown by pilots of the Irish Air Corps
  • Newbridge
    • Cal

County Kilkenny

  • Inishoge
    • Circle of Friends

County Limerick

  • Dromore Castle
    • High Spirits - The castle is featured as the fictional Castle Plunkett
  • Limerick City
    • Angela's Ashes

County Louth

  • Clogherhead
    • The Devil's Own

County Mayo

  • Cong
    • The Quiet Man - The saga of the boxer and the flame-haired Irishwoman was filmed in and around Cong. The tourism trade still dines out on that

County Meath

  • Bettystown
    • The Crying Game - The carnival scene was filmed in this seaside location just north of Dublin
  • Navan
    • Omagh - The movie was filmed in the town center of Navan, parts of which look remarkably like Omagh
  • Trim
    • Braveheart - Trim Castle stands in for Carlisle
    • Captain Lightfoot

County Monaghan

  • Clones
    • The Butcher Boy - The town can be recognized in several background scenes

County Tipperary

  • Cahir Castle
    • Barry Lyndon - Stanley Kubrick used the castle in his innovative epic
    • Excalibur - The opening scenes with King Uther Pendragon were filmed here
  • Rock of Cashel
    • Excalibur

County Wexford

  • Curracloe Beach
    • Saving Private Ryan - Actors and the Irish Army starred as invasion forces on D-Day, storming the beaches at Curracloe, which are similar to the Normandy beaches

County Wicklow

  • Avoca
    • Ballykissangel - The hugely successful BBC TV series, portraying Irish (or rather Oirish) life was filmed in Avoca
    • Give my Head Peace - A stroke of genius: in one episode of this satirical sitcom on Irish sectarianism (yes, you read that right) a bunch of Orangemen march through Ballykissangel
  • Bray
    • My Left Foot - Scenes of the movie were shot in the seaside resort just south of Dublin
  • Kilpedder
    • The Blue Max - The planes were flown by pilots of the Irish Air Corps
  • Kilruddery House
    • Far and Away
    • My Left Foot
  • Powerscourt Estate
    • Henry V - Representing Agincourt in Laurence Olivier's 1944 movie version
  • Wicklow Mountains
    • Braveheart
    • Excalibur
    • Into the West
    • King Arthur - A stretch of Hadrian's Wall was built for this movie
    • Lassie (2005)
    • Michael Collins - The Wicklows are standing in for Cork
    • Reign of Fire - The post-apocalyptic ruins were erected as a stage set only
    • Vikings - The Blessington Lakes see some raiding by longboats
    • Zardoz
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