Thurles, Co. Tipperary
Thurles (Irish: Dúrlas Éile) is a town on the river Suir in County Tipperary. Thurles is surrounded by the Silvermines which are mountains to the north-west and the Slieveardagh Hills to the south-east. The town itself nestles in the heart of the beautiful Suir Valley.
The many castles and monastic settlements, which surround Thurles, bear lasting evidence to the area's rich and colourful history. The town itself owes its development to the Norman Butlers and particularly to James, who was created Earl of Ormond by Edward III in 1328. Two of the original family fortresses still remain in Thurles today.
Thurles is the birthplace of the Gaelic Athletic Association, founded in 1884 in Hayes' Hotel. Semple Stadium is Ireland's second largest sports arena with a capacity of 55,000, second only to Croke Park. In addition, Lar na Pairce, a museum devoted to the Gaelic Athletic Association, is located in the town.