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County Waterford

On the quays of Waterford city, we are witness to a trading and seafaring tradition which goes back at least 1,150 years. But this sense of history also looks to the future, as Waterford – traditionally the city of crystal and quality glassware – is popular as a Tall Shjps assembly port.  Today's larger commercial ships may be berthed downstream on the other side of the river at Belview, but the old cityside quays on the south bank retain a nautical flavour which is accentuated by very useful marina berthing facilities in the heart of town.

This fine port was founded in 853 AD when the Vikings - Danes for the most part - established the trading settlement of Vadrefjord. Its strategic location in a sheltered spot at the head of the estuary near the confluence of the Suir and Barrow rivers guaranteed its continuing success under different administrators, particularly the Normans, so much so that it tended to overshadow the county of Waterford, almost all of which is actually to the west of the city.

But for many years now, the county town has been Dungarvan, which is two-thirds of the way westward along Waterford's extensive south coast, which includes the attractive Copper Coast - between Fenor and Stradbally - in its midst. This spreading of the administrative centres of gravity has to some extent balanced the life of the Waterford region. But even so, the extreme west of the county is still one of Ireland's best kept secrets, a place of remarkable beauty between the Knockmealdown, Comeragh and Monavullagh mountains, where fish-filled rivers such as the Bride, the Blackwater, and the Nire make their way seawards at different speeds through valleys of remarkable variety and beauty, past pretty towns and villages such as romantic, castle-bedecked Lismore which has been an overall winner in the Tidy Towns awards, and is architecturally all of a piece.

West Waterford is a place of surprises. For instance, around the delightful coastal village of Ardmore, ancient monuments suggest that the local holy man, St Declan, introduced Christianity to the area quite a few years before St Patrick went to work in the rest of Ireland. And across the bay from Ardmore, the Ring neighbourhood is a Gaeltacht  (Irish-speaking) area with its own bustling fishing port at Helvick.

Dungarvan itself is enjoying the fruits of an attractive revival. It has relinquished its role as a commercial port, but is enthusiastically taking to recreational boating and harbourside regeneration instead. Along the bluff south coast, secret coves gave smugglers and others access to charming villages like Stradbally and Bunmahon. Further east, the increased tempo of the presence of Waterford city is felt both at the traditional resort of Tramore, and around the fishing/sailing harbour of Dunmore East.


Local Attractions and Information:

Ballymacarbry Nire Valley & Comeraghs on Horseback +353 (0)52 36147

Cappoquin Mount Melleray Activity Centre +353 (0)58 54322

Cappoquin Tourism Information +353 (0)58 53333

Dungarvan Tourism Information +353 (0)58 41741

Kilmeaden Old School House Craft Centre +353 (0)51 853567

Lismore Lismore Castle & Gardens +353 (0)58 54424

Passage East Car Ferry (to Ballyhack, Co Wexford) +353 (0)51 382480

Tramore Tramore House Gardens +353 (0)51 386303

Waterford Airport +353 (0)51 875589

Waterford Christ Church Cathedral (18c Neoclassical) +353 (0)51 858958

Waterford Waterford Crystal Glass Centre +353 (0)51 332500

Waterford Heritage Museum +353 (0)51 871227

Waterford Int. Festival of Light Opera (Sept) +353 (0)51 375437

Waterford Reginald's Tower 13th C Circular Tower +353 (0)51 304220

Waterford Theatre Royal +353 (0)51 874402

Waterford Tourism Information +353 (0)51 875823

Waterford Waterford Treasures at the Granary +353 (0)51 304500

Gardens

Fairbrook House Gardens, Kilmeaden County Waterford
Fairbrook House Gardens & Museum of Contemporary Figurative Art
Kilmeaden, Co. Waterford
The water power of the River Dawn is the key to Fairbrook’s history, first as a flour mill dating back to 1776 and, from 1846 to 1929, as a woollen mill. When Dutch artists Clary Mastenbroek and her late husband Wout Muller moved there only ...
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Golf

Aerial view of Faithlegg House & Golf Course
Faithlegg Golf Club
Waterford, Co. Waterford
Course Type: Parkland
Opened in May 1993, Faithlegg golf course was designed by renowned Irish golf courses architect Paddy Merrigan, the course carries the familiar Merrigan stamp of difficult, undulating greens.  And water heightens the challenge, especially ov ...
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Self Catering

Waterford Castle Hotel - Waterford County Waterford Ireland - Self Catering
Waterford Castle Lodges
Waterford, Co. Waterford
Castle Gardens’ architects and interior designers have pooled cutting edge design, technology and glamour to achieve something very desirable indeed. These 3 bedroom semi detached lodges are set on the beautiful island of Waterford Cast ...
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What's On

There is no featured What's On in this county

Tourist Attractions

Dungarvan Castle - Dungarvan County Waterford Ireland
Dungarvan Castle
Dungarvan, Co. Waterford
Dungarvan Castle (also known as King John's Castle) was built by the Normans in the 12th century and strengthened by King John of Robin Hood fame in the early 1200's. The Castle consists of a polygonal shell keep with an enclosing curtain wall, a ...
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Wedding Venues

Wedding
Faithlegg House Hotel
Faithlegg, Co. Waterford
Set in wooded landscape with magnificent views over the Suir estuary and its own 18-hole championship golf course, this hotel has been developed around a lovely 18th century manor house, which has retained elements of old world charm and decor. ...
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Local Recommendations

Hospitality

Special Offers

  • Value Breaks in Glasha

    There are few places in Ireland that have the restorative powers of West Waterford, particularly where the hospitality that the O'Gorman's of Glasha provide is concerned. They have a recession busting special offer at the moment Three nights B&B and two dinners for just €185 per person sharing
  • Specials at Hanora's Cottage

    Enjoy a very special short break in the gloriously remote Hanora's Cottage (a former Georgina Campbell Guesthouse of the Year) for only €125 or €155 per person to include two nights B&B, dinner on one evening, a packed lunch & samples of Hanoras Cottage produce to bring home (available Monday-Saturday).
  • Waterford's Original & Best Value Wine & Dine Offer

    Restaurant Chez-K’s is a large high bright room with plenty of natural light and large paintings by artist Darlene Garr on the walls, the restaurant offers cooking well above the standard normally expected of hotels. It is home to Waterford's Original & Best Value Wine & Dine Offer - 3 Course Meal plus a Bottle of Red/White House Wine for €24.50 per person – Wine based on 2 sharing

Self Catering

Farmers Markets

Tourist Attractions

Golf Courses

Gardens

Town Information

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