Portora Castle was built for Sir William Cole who purchased the land in 1612. It is strategically positioned by the narrow exit of the River Erne into the Lower Lough Erne.

Sir Michael Cole and his family moved to Portora Castle in 1710 when their previous residence, Enniskillen Castle, was hit by fire. They remained there until about 1716, when Sir Michael's son, John Cole (1680–1726), started building Florence Court.

Three of the flankers remain, the two on the west, flanking the walls of the castle. These round towers, about 3m in diameter, have several gun loops. Inside the castle can be seen proper fireplace chimneys in the north and west walls.

The ford at Portora was important in the Erne Waterways and must have seen considerable traffic in peace and war. In the course of the Erne Drainage Scheme (1951–1960) a bronze dirk and stone axes were recovered at this point. The castle is now in ruins, partly because a group of truanting school-boys from nearby Portora Royal School, now Enniskillen Royal Grammar School, experimenting with gunpowder they learnt how to create in chemistry class, blew up a section in the latter part of the 19th century. They also tried digging under the building which added to its dereliction.



Your name


Founded: 1612
Category: Castles and fortifications in United Kingdom

More Information



4.3/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Paul O'Neil (2 years ago)
It is a ruin but still. Worth a visit when your are passing by.
Larissa Ribeiro (2 years ago)
Not a castle actually.. just some little wall but the cow was really cute
Apollo Spencer (2 years ago)
lovely historical build
Mhairi Walton (2 years ago)
Situated just off the outskirts of Enniskillen town on the shore road you'll pick up the sign for Portra Castle. Small amount of parking available located just Infront of monument. Grassed area and short walking path down and around to the shoreline of the lakes near to the round O playpark.
John Bashford (2 years ago)
Portora Castle is on the edge of Enniskillen and well signed off the A46 Lough Shore Road. There is a carpark beside the castle, which sits beside the River Erne. 10 minutes would do visiting the ruined castle, but it's possible to do a 25 minute circular walk from the Castle. Walk towards Enniskillen, following the river paths towards Portora boat club, past Portora (Enniskillen Royal Grammar) school and front gates. Once at the front gates turn right along Lough Shore Road footpath until you return back into Castle Lane, past the Rugby fields and back to the carpark. There are great views of the river and Enniskillen along the route.
Powered by Google

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Monte d'Accoddi

Monte d"Accoddi is a Neolithic archaeological site in northern Sardinia, located in the territory of Sassari. The site consists of a massive raised stone platform thought to have been an altar. It was constructed by the Ozieri culture or earlier, with the oldest parts dated to around 4,000–3,650 BC.

The site was discovered in 1954 in a field owned by the Segni family. No chambers or entrances to the mound have been found, leading to the presumption it was an altar, a temple or a step pyramid. It may have also served an observational function, as its square plan is coordinated with the cardinal points of the compass.

The initial Ozieri structure was abandoned or destroyed around 3000 BC, with traces of fire found in the archeological evidence. Around 2800 BC the remains of the original structure were completely covered with a layered mixture of earth and stone, and large blocks of limestone were then applied to establish a second platform, truncated by a step pyramid (36 m × 29 m, about 10 m in height), accessible by means of a second ramp, 42 m long, built over the older one. This second temple resembles contemporary Mesopotamian ziggurats, and is attributed to the Abealzu-Filigosa culture.

Archeological excavations from the chalcolithic Abealzu-Filigosa layers indicate the Monte d"Accoddi was used for animal sacrifice, with the remains of sheep, cattle, and swine recovered in near equal proportions. It is among the earliest known sacrificial sites in Western Europe.

The site appears to have been abandoned again around 1800 BC, at the onset of the Nuragic age.

The monument was partially reconstructed during the 1980s. It is open to the public and accessible by the old route of SS131 highway, near the hamlet of Ottava. It is 14,9 km from Sassari and 45 km from Alghero. There is no public transportation to the site. The opening times vary throughout the year.