O'Brien's Tower

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O'Brien's Tower
Túr Uí Bhriain
O'Brien's Tower.jpg
O'Brien's Tower
O'Brien's Tower is located in Ireland
O'Brien's Tower
General information
Status in use
Type Observation tower
Location Cliffs of Moher, Clare
Town or city Liscannor
Country Ireland
Coordinates 52°58′22.84″N 9°25′49.93″W / 52.9730111°N 9.4305361°W / 52.9730111; -9.4305361Coordinates: 52°58′22.84″N 9°25′49.93″W / 52.9730111°N 9.4305361°W / 52.9730111; -9.4305361
Elevation 88 m (289 ft)
Named for Cornelius O'Brien
Opened 1835
Client Sir Cornelius O'Brien
Technical details
Material limestone
Floor count 3

O'Brien's Tower marks the highest point of the Cliffs of Moher, a very popular tourist destination in County Clare, Ireland. It is located a short distance from the villages Doolin and Liscannor.


The tower was built on the cliffs in 1835 by local landlord and MP Sir Cornellius O'Brien as an observation tower for the Victorian tourists that frequented the cliffs at the time: "strangers visiting the Magnificent Scenery of this neighbourhood". It is said to have initially served as a teahouse, featuring a large round table with seats of ironwork.[1]:29

Another version tells of O'Brien building the tower in order to impress women he was courting. On a clear day the view can extend as far as Loop Head at the southern tip of Clare and beyond to the mountains of Kerry. Looking north from O'Brien's Tower on clear days, the Twelve Bens in Connemara (also known as the Twelve Pins) beyond Galway Bay can be seen, and typically the Aran Islands to the west.

O'Briens Tower is just visible in this panoramic view of the Cliffs of Moher.
The plateau where the tower is located, fenced off to discourage potentially dangerous hiking.


  1. ^ Roche, D. The Clare Guide - Official Irish Tourist Board Guide. Bord Failte. 
  • Portrait of Ireland: Landscapes, Treasures, Traditions (Dorling Kindersley Travel Guides), August 1, 2000, ISBN 0-7894-6361-X

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