As neat as a new pin, Kevin & Ber O’Donnell’s delightfully situated farmhouse is on a former dairy farm, surrounded by three mountain ranges - the Comeraghs, the Knockmealdowns and the Galtees - and close to the rivers Suir and Tar, making it an ideal base for walking and fishing holidays.
Trout fishing on the Suir and Tar on the farm is free (hut provided for tying flies, storing equipment and drying waders) and Kevin, who is trained in mountain skills, leads walking groups. It’s an old house, but well restored to combine old furniture with modern comforts; the bedrooms are not especially big, but they are thoughtfully furnished (including tea/coffee facilities and iron/trouser press) and, like the rest of the house, immaculate.
There’s a great welcome and guests feel at home immediately - especially once they get tucked into Ber’s delicious dinners.
Don’t expect any fancy menus or a wine list (you are welcome to bring your own wine), what you’ll get here is real home cooking, based on fresh farm produce: home-produced beef, perhaps, or chicken stuffed with ricotta, spinach & parmesan and wrapped in cured ham, then apple pie for afters, perhaps - and breakfast are equally delicious, with stewed fruits from the garden and home-made breads and preserves as well as lovely porridge or the ‘full Irish’.
Genuinely hospitable hosts, homely comforts - including a log fire to relax beside after dinner and a large, well-maintained garden, where guests can enjoy the peaceful setting - all add up to a real country break.
Courses on diverse subjects including including gardening, art & craft, and beekeeping are offered.
*Kilmaneen was our Farmhouse of the Year in 2005.