Tourist Attractions in County Wicklow
Wicklow Walks www.wicklowwalks.com There’s plenty more to the Wicklow Hills than just the Wicklow Way. Detailed hill walking routes and map directions for the Wicklow and Dublin hills, ranging from short (< 1 hour) to more challenging (3 hours or more) walks.
Russborough House Blessington www.russborough.ie Tel: + 353 45 865239 Russborough welcomes visitors to the demesne (estate) to explore the grounds and walks, explore the rich heritage and the lovely rooms, learn about the Beit Art Collection, enjoy the Maze and relax and discuss the history over a cup of tea or coffee. You can begin with a leisurely walk around the grounds in front of the house, and view the magnificent mansion from the far side of the lake. Why not try the Maze and see how far you can get?
Blessington Lake Boat Hire and Boat Tours www.blessingtonlakeboathire.com Join us on a tour of the lake and discover: what lies below the water, houses, farms, bridges, a cemetary, the meeting of the Liffey and Kings rivers. Families that want to explore can learn how to row a lake boat, and find a secluded beach for a picnic. Enjoy a relaxing evening, where you can take an evening row, just the two of you. Bring a picnic – just row and drift. Fishing on the largest lake in Wicklow with 56 kilometers of shoreline which offers the angler excellent coarse and pike fishing.
Glendalough Tel: + 353 (0) 404 45600 Glendalough is a remarkable place that will still your mind, inspire your heart and fill your soul. Glendalough has long been an area renowned for its natural beauty and history and it is one of the most visited places in Ireland. Glendalough and the surrounding area has everything to offer the modern visitor from a wide selection of accommodation to suit all tastes and budgets, to great places to eat as well as a host of other activities to suit both the independent traveller and the whole family.
Powerscourt Enniskerry Tel: + 353 (0) 1 204 6000 Powerscourt is one of Europe’s great treasures and Ireland’s most famous House & Gardens. Gracing the Wicklow mountains, 20km from Dublin city centre, Powerscourt is a heritage property with a surprising difference. Powerscourt Waterfall is Ireland’s highest at 121m (398ft.) and is surrounded by woods and specimen trees.
Scenic Drives: Wicklow Gap (Hollywood to Laragh 26km) & Sally Gap (Enniskerry to Lough Tay) There are two spectacular scenic drives through the Wicklow mountains. The narrow roads pass through wild landscape, marked by small waterfalls coming out of the sides of the hills, mature forests and blanket bog. This beautiful area has been the location for scenes from several films including ‘P.S. I Love You’, ‘Braveheart’ and ‘Excalibur’.
Wicklow Mountains National Park www.wicklowmountainsnationalpark.ie The purpose of the National Park is to conserve local biodiversity and landscape. It covers over 20,000 hectares – the most visited area of which is the Glendalough Valley. The park arranges a variety of free events throughout the year from star gazing to nature walks. See website for details and booking information.
National Sea Life Centre, Bray 01 2866939 www.visitsealife.com Located on Bray’s Seafront, this is one of the country’s largest all-weather Marine and Freshwater Zoos. Its collection of over 90 species of underwater animals is displayed in a range of exciting exhibits. A great trip for the family – especially for one of those rainy days.
Bray Cliff Walk to Greystones. Stunning 8 kilometre walk taking in spectacular sea and mountain views. After your invigorating walk relax in one of Greystones’ fine coffee shops and if you’ve done enough walking for one day you can return to Bray on the DART. (www.irishrail.ie for timetables).
Glenroe Open Farm , Kilcoole (01) 287 2288 www.glenroefarm.com For both a fun and educational family day out visit Glenroe. Observe and pet the farm animals, visit the museum, go for a nature walk, discover the secret and sensory gardens and enjoy the playground. Indoor and outdoor picnic facilities available or taste the home baking in the coffee shop.
National Garden Exhibition Centre, Kilquade 01 2819890 www.gardenexhibition.ie A great place to come for inspiration for your garden or just to enjoy the beauty of a well designed garden. With 22 exhibition gardens created by leading garden designers and several medal winners showing over 15,000 plant species you’re sure to bring home some new ideas. Coffee shop on site.
Kilruddery House & Gardens, Bray 00 353 (0) 1 286 3405 www.killruddery.com This fine Elizabethan-Revival mansion has been home to the Brabazon family since 1618 with one of the oldest gardens in Ireland. The Orangery built in 1852 and restored in 2000 houses an impressive collection of marble statues.
Mt. Usher Gardens Ashford 0404 40205 / 40116 www.mountushergardens.ie Located along the River Vartry these eight hectares of gardens designed in the Robinsonian style attract horticulturists from all over the world. 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.
Devil’s Glen Ashford www.coillteoutdoors.ie Dramatic wooded walks with a choice of two trails: the 5 km waterfall walk descends down the gorge to the Vartry river or The Seamus Heaney Walk – approximately 4 km of rough walking with steep sections taking in views over the surrounding countryside, diverse woodland cover and ‘Sculpture in Woodland’ pieces. This is a unique outdoor gallery displaying a variety of large woodland sculptures created by artists from around the world.
Wicklow’s Historic Gaol 0404 61599 www.wicklowshistoricgaol.com Infamous gaol built at the beginning of the 18th century. Its history is brought to life through audio visual displays, figures, graphics and actors. Gain insight into the practice of transporting convicts to Australia and board the model of the convict ship HMS Hercules. If you’re brave enough you can take the tour in the dark and mingle with the ghosts! (adults only). Craft shop and cafe complete your visit.
Avondale House & Gardens, Rathdrum 0404 46111 www.coillteoutdoors.ie Avondale House, the birthplace and family residence of Charles Stewart Parnell, is set in a 214 hectare estate. The park has six way-marked walks and trails or varying distances: river walk, cairn walk, exotic tree trail, pine tree trail, centenary trail and Slí na Slainte (Path to Health) . Other facilities include a restaurant, book shop, picnic areas and children’s play area.
Greenan Farm Museums & Maze, Rathdrum 0404 46000 www.greenanmaze.com A collection of museums displaying exhibits related to a traditional hill-farm and dating back over 200 years. The Celtic Maze is a tricky hedge maze covering half an acre. Follow the Celtic spirals to find the pond in the centre. Or for a more contemplative experience try the Solstice Maze with its 21 stones. Also on site enjoy the nature/farm walk and home baking in the tearooms.
Clara-Lara Fun Park , Rathdrum 0404 46161 www.claralara.com A unique outdoor adventure park located on 60 acres dedicated to providing healthy and creative fun for children of all ages. Be prepared for a soaking as you enjoy water slides, rowing boats, walk the plank off the pirate ship, amphicats, aqua shuttle, rope swings, radio controlled boats, mini-golf, go-karts and more. Picnic and barbeque facilities on site.
Avoca Handweavers, Avoca, +353-402-35105 also Kilmacanogue 353-1-274 6900 www.avoca.ie
Avoca village is the birthplace of what has become a very successful Irish brand in fashion, food, gifts and homeware. You can visit the mill and tour the weaving sheds . To experience the excellent food and retail range you can visit any of 4 locations in Co.Wicklow: Avoca village. Kilmacanogue, Powerscourt House (see above) and Mount Usher Gardens (see above).
Maritime Museum, Arklow 086 3843283 www.arklowmaritimemuseum.com Explore Arklow’s seafaring past with a diverse range of maritime exhibits including shipbuilders models, old navigational instruments, a navy officer uniform as well as mementoes collected by seamen from around the world. The museum also records the work of The RNLI with Arklow being the first lifeboat station opened in Ireland in 1826.
Baltinglass Abbey is one of the most important Cistercian abbeys of Leinster. and was founded in 1148 by Dermot McMurrough, king of Leinster. The six beautiful Gothic arches on either side of the nave, supported by alternate round and square pillars, are a noteworthy feature of the ruins.
Kippure Estate Adventure 01 4592889 www.adventurewicklow.com 240 acres of mature woodland and wilderness make the perfect place for an afternoon (or more) of adventure: including a High Ropes Course, Climbing and Abseiling, Orienteering, Archery and Hillwalking.
These man-made lakes were created during the building of the Poulaphouca Dam and hydroelectric station and are still maintained by the Electricity Supply Board. They are a popular spot for coarse fishing (permit required: see www.fishingireland.net), walking and other water based activities.
County Wicklow Attractions
Russborough House Blessington
Blessington Lake Boat Hire and Boat Tours