The Irish Sun

Monday 12th – Thursday 15th July

Itinerary

The Irish Sun

Start
1. Day #1
Day 1, Monday

AM - Drive from home to Bray.

Info on Bray Head: County Wicklow is known for its walking trails and the coastal path from Bray to Greystones is one of the best. The 7km cliff walk runs close to the Dublin-Wexford railway, built during the 19th century. The railway workers built the path in order to transport tools and materials to the line below, but they also created one of the most picturesque cliff walks on the east coast. If you’d rather not walk back to Bray, you can get the train from Greystones.

Alternatively, take the path from Bray to the top of Bray Head to get panoramic views of Bray, North East Wicklow and Dublin Bay, plus the neighbouring mountains of the Great and Little Sugar Loaf.

Address and parking: Pay and display on Strand Road opposite the Star and Leisure Casino. Or you can park at Cliff Walk Car Park, Raheen Park, Newcourt, Bray, Co. Wicklow – also pay and display.


PM –
Drive to Black Castle.

Address: Black Castle, S Quay, Corporation Lands, Co. Wicklow

 

Info on Black Castle: The ruins of Black Castle stand on a rocky headland looking out across Wicklow Town and the North Wicklow coast. Built around 1176 following the Norman invasions, Black Castle is another castle with a turbulent history, under frequent attack from the local chieftains, mainly those of the O’Toole and O’Byrne clans. The O’Byrnes burned it down in both 1295 and 1315. The castle managed to survive until around 1645, when it was attacked again and eventually demolished.

 

Suggested lunch stop on your way to Black Castle: Firehouse Bakery and Café

Address: Old Delgany Inn, Delgany, Co. Wicklow, A63 T285

Info: artisan bakery and café serving up homemade sandwiches, soups, pizzas and flatbreads.
*please keep your receipts*

 

Overnight @ BrookLodge & Macreddin Village

Address: Macreddin East, Macreddin Village, Co. Wicklow, Y14 A362

Info: a luxurious country house hotel situated in the beautiful Macreddin Village and surrounded by spectacular Wicklow countryside.

Check-in: 16:00
Check-out: 11:00

8:45pm Dinner: La Taverna Armento, BrookLodge & Macreddin Village
Info: La Taverna Armento, features a full Southern Italian menu, based on the magnificent foods available from the countryside surrounding the Village of Armento in the province of Basilicata.

Please enjoy a three-course meal and alcohol with your food if you’d like it. Your bill will be settled by us.

2. Day #2
Day 2, Tuesday

AM
Drive from BrookLodge to Brittas Bay (35 minutes)

 

Address: Brittas Bay Car Park, Brittas, Co. Wicklow.
Make sure you take change for the car park.

 

Info on Brittas Bay: One of the finest expanses of shoreline on the east coast, Three Mile Water at Brittas Bay is thought to have been the initial landing point of St Patrick in Ireland. With no headlands to disrupt the gentle rhythm of the waves breaking on the sand, this 5km stretch is perfect for bathing, sailing and walking. For six weeks of summer, Brittas Bay is nature’s playground for children, who can race through the dunes and emerge straight onto the beach. But the rest of the year, the beach is, by and large, the ideal place for monkish solitude and contemplation.

Drive from Brittas Bay to Curracloe Beach (55 minutes)

 

Address: Coolrainey, Curracloe, Co. Wexford
Parking: Free parking by the beach

 

Info on Curracloe Beach: This Blue Flag Award-winning beach stretches over 11km from Raven Point to Ballyconigar, near Blackwater. Famous for its soft sand, the sprawling dunes and endless blanket of marram grass are a magnet for both wildlife and the visitors who take great delight in rolling down them! Curracloe Beach provided a suitable substitute for Omaha Beach in Normandy, the opening scenes of ‘Saving Private Ryan’ having been filmed there.

 

PM
Drive from Curracloe Beach to Enniscorthy (30 minutes)


Address: Castle Hill, Enniscorthy, Co. Wexford

Parking: there is no parking available directly at Enniscorthy Castle, but there is lots of paid public parking at a number of locations in the town. There is free car and coach parking at The National 1798 Rebellion Centre, Y21 PY03 (9-minute walk to the castle).

 

Suggested lunch stop (5-minute walk from Enniscorthy Castle): The Wilds
*please keep your receipts*

Address: 23 Weafer St, Enniscorthy, Co. Wexford, Y21 K702

Info: award-winning café serving artisan coffees, loose-leaf teas, home baked cakes and a seasonal lunch menu.

 


Info on
Enniscorthy Castle: *please wear a face mask throughout your visit*

To say that Enniscorthy Castle has had a turbulent history is probably an understatement.

The castle was originally built in 1190 by the Norman de Prendergast family, who lived there relatively peacefully for around 200 years. After this, the issue of who owned the castle became very contentious and was often settled with violence. It was claimed by the Irish in 1375, retaken by the English in 1536, burned down by the Irish in 1569, gifted by Queen Elizabeth in 1589, besieged by Orwellian forces in 1649 and then used as a prison during the 1798 Rising. It’s now home to the Wexford County Museum.

Overnight @ Riverside Park Hotel

Address: The Promenade, Enniscorthy, Co. Wexford, Y21 T2F4

Info: A 4 star Riverside Park Hotel in Wexford, nestled on the banks of the River Slaney in the picturesque town of Enniscorthy and overlooked by Enniscorthy Castle

Check-in: 16:00
Check-out: 11:00

 

8pm Dinner: The Moorings Restaurant, Riverside Park Hotel
Info: Using Wexford’s locally sourced produce with views overlooking the River Slaney.
Please enjoy a three-course meal and alcohol with your food if you’d like it. Your bill will be settled by us.

3. Day #3
Day 3, Wednesday

AM

Drive from Riverside Park Hotel to Waterford City (1 hour)

Address and parking options: Exchange Street Car Park, Exchange St, Waterford, X91 VK09, Ireland, there are plenty of car parks around within Waterford City so choose whichever is easiest.

 

Visit Waterford Viking Triangle
Info: While there’s no doubt that they were drawn to Ireland to raid the rich monasteries, the Vikings were a lot more than just rampaging warriors.  As time went on, they settled, forged alliances and established trading routes – and became an important part of Ireland’s story. A large fleet of invaders landed in what we now call Waterford City in 914. The Waterford Viking Triangle, part of the city’s cultural and heritage area, sits in the original footprint of the settlement. It’s said that there’s ‘1,000 years of history within 1,000 paces’, with a trio of museums showcasing the city’s Viking, Medieval and Georgian history.

Suggested lunch stop: The Granary Cafe
Address: Hanover Street, Waterford City (5 minute walk from the Viking Triangle)
Info: In the heart of Waterford City, The Granary is housed in a beautiful and charming quay-side granary built in 1870. They use fresh, seasonal ingredients, and all locally sources. They have a range of salad, sandwiches, main courses and desserts.
*please keep your receipts*

 

PM

Drive from Waterford City to meet Marie, Sea Gardener for 2:30 (26-minute drive, would suggest leaving Waterford just before 2pm)

Address: Annestown Beach, Copper Coast – park at the Strand Car Park: R675, Co. Waterford

Info on the Sea Gardener: Marie Power has been running seaweed workshops and events on wildlife for several years on a voluntary basis. She now runs workshops on a regular basis, introducing people to seaweed and wild food foraging and cookery, the wider ecological web on the rocky shore and sustainable ways to forage.

 

Mobile for Marie: 086 8124275

You’ll be taking the Go Wild with Seaweed Workshop: 2-hours of foraging with Marie on Annestown Beach where you’ll learn about seaweed and cook/eat your own.

Important: please dress for the weather (warm clothes etc.), you will need waterproof footwear too – wellies or old walking boots/runners.

Drive from Annestown Beach to Cliff House Hotel (1hr 5mins)

Overnight @ Cliff House Hotel

Address: Middle Road, Dysert, Ardmore, Co. Waterford, P36 DK38

Info: a five-star, privately owned luxury hotel regarded as one of the finest small luxury hotels in Ireland.

Check-in: 16:00
Check-out: 12:00

 

8pm Dinner at The House Restaurant at Cliff House Hotel

Info: Irish cuisine with a Michelin star. Please enjoy an eight-course tasting menu, your bill will be settled by us.

4. Day #4
Day 4, Thursday

AM
Visit St Declan and Ardmore with optional walk

Info: In the 5th century, St Declan came across the village of Ardmore – it’s said he was guided there by a stone carried on the waves - and founded a monastery. Its ruins are Ireland’s oldest Christian settlement. Today, a number of sites remain of his monastic city.

 

There’s an 8th-century oratory beneath which it’s believed the saint is buried and a 12th-century 29m-high round tower, which served as a belfry and place of refuge. There’s also the 12th-century cathedral, with Romanesque arcading with figures depicting scenes from both Old and New Testaments – very unusual in Ireland. Inside the cathedral are two Ogham stones featuring the earliest form of writing in Ireland.

 

The 4km cliff walk that starts and ends in the village is well worth taking to visit St Declan’s Well, where pilgrims have paid tribute for hundreds of years every 24th July, the saint’s feast day.

 

Optional: On your way home, drive from Ardmore to Coumshingaun Lough Car Park (42mins).

Address: Coumshingaun Lough Car Park, Cutteen, Co. Waterford

Info about Coumshingaun: Coumshingaun is one of the finest examples of a corrie (or ‘coum’, in Irish) in Europe, and the Comeragh Mountains’ most recognisable landmark. A corrie is an armchair-shaped hollow found in the side of a mountain, where a glacier formed.

If you fancy, you can do the Coumshingaun Loop Walk which is a moderate 7.5km route around the ridge and plateau of this natural amphitheatre, from which you’ll get stunning views of the dark lough 365m below. When it’s clear, you can see as far as the River Suir Bridge in Waterford City and Hook Head in County Wexford.

The 18th-century highwayman William Crotty had a strong connection with the area, hiding out from the law in caves here. It didn’t end well, though. He was eventually captured, tried and hung; his head spiked outside the county jail as a warning. If you have time, you can seek his treasure at the lough and cave named after him.

End