October 9, 1926 saw first steps taken towards creating the Limerick Gaelic Grounds as a GAA stadium of note. A farm containing 12 acres (4.9 ha) was purchased at Coolraine on the Ennis Road for development as a sporting grounds. Two years later the new grounds officially opened with two junior hurling games. The first big effort to raise funds for the development of the grounds was in 1932, with the establishment of a development committee, whose remit was to level the pitch, providing sideline seating and erect a boundary wall. The 1950s saw crowds of up to 50,000 attending games in the grounds. 1958 saw a new stand being built at Páirc na nGael - it was the Old Hogan Stand from Croke Park. A record paid attendance of 61,174 witnessed the Munster hurling final between Cork and Tipperary at the stadium in 1961 and it is estimated that another 10,000 spectators piled in without paying after the gates were broken down.
In 1979 a major decision was taken to update the grounds completely. It took three years before plans were drawn up for a new stand and in 1986 planning permission was granted by Limerick Corporation for the Mick Mackey Stand. The updated stand was completed in 1988, just in time for the Munster hurling final. In 2004 the biggest rejuvenation of the stadium was completed with the opening of a new 12,000 uncovered stand along with 2 new terraces behind both goals at a cost of €12 million. The current capacity of the Gaelic Grounds is 49,866.
The stadium has also hosted a game in the International Rules Series between Australia and Ireland. The hybrid game was played outside Croke Park for only the second time on Irish soil, with Pearse Stadium in Galway the other previous host.