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Touring Wicklow

Wicklow

Wicklow

Wicklow

County Wicklow, known as the “Garden of Ireland” offers breathtaking scenery of lakes, valleys, heather clad mountain and a wonderful coastline. Golf, walking, horse riding and sea or river fishing are just some of the holiday activities on offer in the area around Ballyknocken. Explore the many gardens of Wicklow, visit the historic and scenic 6th century monastic settlement of Glendalough, one of Ireland’s most beautiful visitor destinations and only a 20 minute drive from Ballyknocken or enjoy a Ballyknocken picnic on Brittas Bay with its 5 miles of golden coastline, ideal for swimming.

If you want to explore further a field a day trip to Kilkenny Castle or Waterford Crsytal Visitor Centre are all within easy reach. You will find Ballyknocken is perfectly located on the doorstep of Dublin – ideal for all main airports and ferry ports and also for visiting the capital city for a day trip whilst enjoying a base in the countryside, which is what real Ireland is all about.

Please see below for some suggestions for day trips and outings from Ballyknocken and if you would like more information please contact us:

The main attractions are as follows:

Driving Time
· Brittas Bay - 5 miles of golden beach 20 min
· The Wicklow Mountains – a breathtaking mountain drive (or walk & cycle) by Luggala Valley, Lough Dan, Lough Tay (the Guinness Lake) Sally Gap and Glenmacnass Waterfall 20 min to the Mountains
· Glendalough – this is a mystical site of a sixth century monastic city famed for its round tower and splendidly located in the Valley of the Two Lakes – a walker’s and historian’s paradise 20 minutes
· Powercourt House and Gardens – stately formal and stunning gardens
30 minutes
· Mount Usher Gardens – wonderful romantic Robinsonian gardens
10 minutes
· Kilruddery House and Gardens – home of the Earl & Countess of Meath
25 minutes
· The Wicklow County Gardens Festival runs from May to August annually. During this time, there are hundreds of gardens open and events for the public  
· Avondale House & Forest Park - home of Charles Stewart Parnell
15 minutes
· Blessington Lakes & Russborough House - home of the Beit Art Collection
60 minutes
· Wicklow Gaol – this depicts the history of the expulsion of Irish rebels to the US and Australia in the 1700s and 1800s 10 minutes
· The Meetings of the Waters - where Thomas Moore wrote some of his famous melodies 20 minutes
· Avoca Village - home to Avoca Handweavers and of course, Ballykissangel!
25 minutes
· Wicklow Town – a pretty sea side town with a working harbour – 5 minutes
· Greenane Farm, Museum & Maze – this is a delight for children
25 minutes
· Sea Life Centre in Bray – again very popular with families
30 minutes

Wicklow Mountains

From atop the Wicklow Mountains high above Dublin, you can look east across the verdant glens and flowering heather bogs to the sandy beaches and granite cliffs of the Irish Sea, and the mythical waters of famine and fortune. Ivy-covered gates, walkways of poppies and panoramas of rolling hills in every imaginable shade of green have lured film makers to this part of Ireland for decades. Scenes from Michael Collins, Braveheart, Rebel Heart, Angela's Ashes, Far and Away, The First Great Train Robbery and more than a dozen other notable movies have been filmed in Co. Wicklow.

Glendalough

Situated in picturesque County Wicklow, was made famous by Saint Kevin who came to the area in the sixth century. He was looking for a place of solitude and having found it, remained and lived a rather hermitic life. He founded his monastery here which attracted thousands of people who were intrigued by St. Kevin's simple and scholarly ways. Over time, a school developed, attracting thousands of students from Europe. St. Kevin died in the year AD 618 at 120 years of age but the remains of his monastery can still be seen.

The most famous of all the landmarks in the area, however, is the Round Tower which stands 110 feet above the ground. It was built almost 1000 years ago by the monks of St. Kevin's monastery.

The roof had to be replaced in 1876 when it was struck by lightning. Local folklore reveals that when the repairs were being carried out, Sam Kennedy, a local man, danced around the rim of the tower.

The tower was originally built as a bell tower and a place of refuge when the monastery was attacked. There are many stone crosses and churches to see.

As well as these magnificent remains, there is the breathtaking scenery of the valley to enjoy.

Powerscourt

Powerscourt is situated in Wicklow the county known as the Garden of Ireland; it is about 20 miles from Dublin. The gardens,regarded as one of the best in Europe , are formal with wide sweeping terraces and some wonderful antique sculptures. Unfortunately the interior of the house was destroyed by fire some 25 years ago though part has been restored. Recently an excellent restaurant and gift shop has opened. There are wonderful Japanese and Italian areas, lakes , ponds and the longest herbaceous border in Ireland. Trees of course play a big role and the Araucaria walk was planted about 125 years ago. Many trees native to North America ,as well as a "Pepperpot" tower , are found in the Tower valley.

The famous Waterfall, the highest in Ireland ,is also well worth a visit.

Mount Usher Gardens

Laid out along the banks of the Vartry river, Mount Usher gardens are executed in what is called the Robinsonian* style. Trees and shrubs have been introduced from all parts of the globe and are planted in harmony with woodland and shade-loving plants. Like all the great gardens of Ireland, Mount Usher offers varying pleasures at different seasons of the year. Rhododendrons in Spring, a blaze of Summer colour and the wistful tints of Autumn, all elegantly set off by the crystal waters of the river.

*Robinsonian - free style