In the foothills of the Wicklow Mountains, Blessington Lakes is a 5,000-acre reservoir formed over 70 years ago by the building of the Poulaphouca dam and hydroelectric power station. As well as being the main source of drinking water for Dublin, it’s a popular base for water-based activities like fishing, boating and kayaking. You can walk or cycle the 6.5km Blessington Greenway along the lakeshore and into natural woodland. Or drive the 26km route around the valley where the Kings River once met the Liffey. Novelist and poet Brendan Behan described his trip to the area as a ‘journey to the jewel of Wicklow’.