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Kissing the Blarney Stone a thrilling experience

October 4, 2011 - 2:25am
Kissing the Blarney Stone a thrilling experience
Located just a short distance from the city of Cork, Blarney, Ireland, has become a popular tourist destination as the home of the famed Blarney Castle. The ruins of the castle date as far back as 1446, and visitors can take a tour through select areas of the building from battlements to the extensive gardens surrounding the structure.

Though the castle was originally built around 1210 by MacCarthy of the Muskerry dynasty, it was eventually knocked down and rebuilt after approximately 200 years, leaving the structure visitors see today.

Blarney Castle has been the site of numerous important events in Irish history, including the Irish Confederate Wars in the 17th century.

Despite its storied history, Blarney Castle is most famous for one of its smaller components, the Blarney Stone. Legend has it that anybody who kisses the stone will be given the gift of gab, and visitors from all over the globe come to see if it rings true.

However, kissing the stone is certainly no easy task. It is located in one of the castle's battlements and tourists have to lean over backwards (usually with the help of an assistant) to complete the ritual.