Ghostly Guide to the Waterways

Waterways Ireland is delighted to present the #GhostlyGuide to the inland waterways on the island of Ireland. The Waterways have a rich, exciting and sometimes spooky history​. Check out our ghostly history of the waterways... if you dare.

To get into the spirit of Halloween, we want to showcase the haunted stories, spooky attractions and scary sights on and along the inland waterways in Ireland. From its inception the story of Irish canals and the waterways is laden with story of tragedy.  Men laboured for a few pence a day to dig the canals at the height of the famine, barges sailed fully armed against a backdrop of simmering hostility, with working conditions improving little by little over the years and numerous accidents later, it is not surprising that there are quite a few ghost stories to be found throughout the waterways!

The Spooks of the Thirteenth Lock

On the Royal Canal the 13th Lock, Deey Bridge, between Leixlip and Maynooth, had the reputation among the old Royal Canal boatmen of being haunted and they would never moor there for the night. This tale became the subject of a poem by Arthur Griffith. Find out more...

Duckett Grove, Co. Carlow

For haunted hotspots and ghostly going-ons there is no spookier place than the romantic ruins of Ducketts Grove in Carlow. In 1830 the owner William Duckett transformed the modest two storey house into a Gothic fantasy with regal arches, neo-gothic oriel windows and grotesques added to the majestic towers and imposing structure. Find out more...

Castlearchdale, Co. Fermanagh

Built near Irvinestown on the banks of Lower Lough Erne Castle Archdale was built by the Archdale family during the plantation in 1611. ​

Find out more...

LaTouche-Bridge, Portobello, Dublin.

​In 1861 a horrible tragedy occurred at La Touche Bridge on the Grand Canal in Portobello, Dublin. Find out more...


Stay tuned for more on the #GhostlyGuide to the Waterways.  If you have any scary waterwat stories, myths or legends, we would love to hear from you. Get your scare on and ours too, email  

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