Providing you are tolerant of tour buses and high season crowds, this dramatically located Abbey offers a surprising range of things to see: a brief stroll from the abbey along the wooded shore leads to the Gothic church, for example, which is a fascinating miniature replica of Norwich cathedral.
Then there’s a fine craft shop in a neat modern building beside the car park and also Mitchell's Café, a family-friendly self-service restaurant, where everything is made on the premises. Inspired by Victorian and traditional style baking and cooking, the café kitchens use the Benedictine nuns' recipes and produce from their Victorian walled garden (see below) and other locally sourced ingredients, in traditional meals like beef & Guinness casserole and Irish stew.
Gluten free and vegetarian dishes are offered, and half portions are available for children; baby bowls are free for toddlers (under 4) and crayons and colouring sheets are provided.
Part of the café area is a speciality food shop and, as elsewhere in this quality-conscious enterprise, you will find excellent food products that will be hard to resist.
Quick snacks and picnic fare are also available from Henry's Express Coffee Shop, where you'll find temptations such as Kylemore Abbey fudge alongside the healthy options.
A short distance away, the nuns also run a farm and the restored Victorian Walled Garden, which is well worth a visit and supplies the ingredients for the many jams and preserves which are made by the Bendictine community and feature in their cafés, and are also sold in the shop, alongside Irish crafts, clothing and giftware.
The entrance fee to the garden includes access to the Garden Tea House, which also makes full use of garden produce.
An online shop offers a limited product range.