For our guests staying at Kippure Estate here is our personal selection of ideas for activities and great days out – either at the estate itself or within easy driving distance. Please note that this is by no means a complete list. Hence, on arrival at Kippure Estate, you will receive a copy of County Wicklow’s annual Tourism Guide with lots more to do and including a very handy map of County Wicklow. Have a lovely holiday!
Kippure Estate’s extensive private grounds are ideal for rambling and exploring, picnics, barbecues or just reading your book in the sunshine - 240 acres (1.6 sq km) of mature woodland and ancient meadows full of magic discoveries…
The fledging River Liffey forms the southern boundary of our estate – walking along the bank on a summer’s evening is spectacular. The Wicklow Mountains National Park stretches to the horizon, almost surrounding the estate. Just three minutes walk from your accommodation there is easy access onto wild open mountain country via our private bridge across the River Liffey.
Walks at Kippure Estate – Pick up our walking map and start exploring! Our 240 acres private estate is a rural idyll and a paradise for nature lovers. The walking map outlines walking trails that meander through truly stunning scenery, ancient woods and moorland habitats. Find little corners of wilderness that seem to have sidestepped the twenty-first century… The walking map is available at the Kippure Estate reception.
Open Activity Days at Kippure Estate:
From April to October, during weekends only, we offer a half day outdoor activity programme specifically for individuals, couples and smaller families. These popular outdoor activity days include mainly ropes based activities. Cost: €25 p.p. for residents of our self-catering houses and €39 p.p. for non-residents.
More info on this website: www.adventurewicklow.com. Pre-booking essential!
Glendalough, 6th Century Monastic Site – situated in a stunningly beautiful valley in the Wicklow Mountains National Park, Glendalough is an ancient monastic settlement from the 6th century – and a truly spellbinding place. The round tower, cathedral, stone churches and decorated crosses most likely date from between the 8th and 12th centuries. The excellent Glendalough Visitor Centre provides regular exhibitions, informative guided tours of the monastic site, as well as an audio-visual show about the rich heritage of the area. Close by is the Information Office of Wicklow Mountains National Park. Here you can buy a small map, which describes a number of delightful rambles around Glendalough Valley and Glendalough Woods Nature Reserve. Glendalough valley is a scenic 40 minutes drive from Kippure Estate. More info: www.wicklowmountainsnationalpark.ie
Visit celebrated Powerscourt: Powerscourt House and Gardens, including Powerscourt Waterfall (Ireland’s highest!), is only an exceptionally scenic 20 minutes drive away. Powerscourt is one of the world’s great gardens, comprising of formal gardens, sweeping terraces, rambling walks, ornamental lakes and over 200 varieties of trees and shrubs. The 18th century Palladian House incorporates the house exhibition, but also a variety of shops (incl. Avoca Handweavers) and the terrace café. www.powerscourt.ie
Irish National Stud & Gardens – The Irish National Stud is a source of national pride and an international tourist attraction. The lands of the Irish National Stud include also the world-famous Japanese Gardens. The significance of these gardens is not only artistic and horticultural, but also philosophical, religious and historical. Acclaimed as the finest Japanese Gardens in Europe! Also at the Irish National Stud: St. Fiachra’s Garden, which captures the power of the Irish landscape in it's rawest state... that of rock and water, a visitor centre and a horse museum. 45 minutes from Kippure Estate. www.irish-national-stud.ie
National Garden Exhibition Centre - 20 gardens planned by different landscapers and designers. The gardens vary from a large water and woodland garden down to a small town garden. All plants are labelled and on entry one receives a map, notepad and pen. Great opportunity to get 100’s of ideas. Restaurant, gift shop, garden centre. 40 minutes from Kippure Estate. www.gardenexhibition.ie
Mount Usher - laid out along the banks of the River Vartry, Mount Usher has been designed in the Robinsonian style (a natural garden style, as opposed to a formal garden style). Trees, shrubs, and herbaceous plants have been introduced from all parts of the globe and are planted in harmony with woodland and shade loving plants. Like all the great Irish gardens, Mount Usher offers varying pleasures at different seasons of the year. Rhododendrons in spring, a blaze of summer colour and the wistful tints of autumn, all elegantly set off by the crystal waters of the river. In addition to the gardens, Mount Usher offers home produced refreshments in their Tea Room. There is a Shopping Courtyard too, that is open all year round. 40 minutes drive from Kippure Estate.
Killruddery House - home to the Brabazon family (the Earls of Meath) since 1618, Killruddery House is the most successful Elizabethan-Revival mansion in Ireland and the most fashionable of its time. The 17th century gardens survive in their original formal layout with some 18th and 19th century additions. The Long Ponds, The Angles and The Sylvan Theatre are features of this magnificent landscape. 40 minutes from Kippure. www.killruddery.com
Russborough House - Palladian house, beautifully maintained and lavishly furnished, contains paintings from the Beit Collection, fine furniture, carpets, porcelain and silver. May, June, July, August, September open every day. April and October open Sundays and Bank Holidays. Tea Room and Shop. Maze open daily June, July and August. 20 minutes from Kippure Estate.
Avondale House & Forest Park – offering something for everyone to enjoy! The historic Georgian House (built in 1777) is set in a wonderful forest park of over 500 acres along the banks of the unspoilt River Avonmore. The forest park features a large number of magnificent mature trees, densely wooded wilderness areas, picturesque sweeping lawns, miles and miles of themed walks (signposted trails, duration from one to five hours, trail map can be purchased at Avondale House), a children’s playground, a deer pen, picnic areas and an orienteering course. Other facilities include the ‘Kitchen Café’ and a small book shop. Avondale House, the birthplace and home of Charles Stewart Parnell, one of the greatest political leaders of Irish history, can be experienced trough a guided tour and an audio visual presentation. Avondale is located near the village of Rathdrum, which is a 45 minutes drive from Kippure Estate. Info and opening hours: www.coillte.ie (on the website go to ‘tourism and recreation’).
Annamoe Trout Fishery - 4 acre fly-fishing lake set in the village of Annamoe, Co. Wicklow, on the banks of the Avonmore River (30 minutes from Kippure). Their Fly Fishing Lake is open all year round (except on Wednesdays in October, November, December, January and February). They offer a wide range of price options to suit both your pocket and the time you have available, allowing you to fish for Brown and Rainbow Trout from 10am to dusk. Log cabin clubhouse for light snacks and refreshments. At Annamoe Trout Fishery you can experience quality angling, a friendly welcome, the thrill of a catch, value for money and a beautiful natural environment. For rates and opening hours please visit: www.annamoetroutfishery.com
Get your toes wet – one of the East Coast’s finest beaches is less than an hour’s drive away… Brittas Bay has a 5 km (3.1 miles) stretch of powdery sand, but its landscape is dominated by the dunes which cover approximately 100 hectares (250 acres). With no headlands to interfere with the peaceful rhythm, it is ideal for swimming and walking. The beach is life-guarded throughout the bathing season and is an internationally recognised Blue Flag beach. A public car park is close by. For directions to Brittas Bay please ask our staff at reception.
Sculpture in Woodland – unique in Ireland, Sculpture in Woodland was formed to develop a greater awareness of wood as an artistic medium. 16 sculptures are located here by Irish and International Artists. Sculptures in Woodland is set in Devil’s Glen Woods, a stunning 200 hectares (500 acres) woodland comprising of a dramatic gorge with waterfall, waymarked walks and a picnic area. Entrance is free of charge and there is ample car parking. For directions, trail maps and walk descriptions please visit: www.sculptureinwoodland.ie 40 minutes drive from Kippure Estate.
Explore Sea Life… A trip to the National Sea Life Centre offers a fun, educational guide to life beneath the waves. Come face to face with all kinds of sea creatures; from sharks to stingrays, octopus to tropical fish. Featuring over 24 spectacular displays, it offers an unforgettable insight into Ireland’s freshwater and marine world as well as the opportunity to view creatures from all over the world. A unique experience for the whole family. Location: Strand Road, Bray, County Wicklow. Phone 01 286 6939. www.sealife.ie. 40 minutes drive from Kippure Estate.
Go to Prison! Venture into Wicklow Town to visit Wicklow’s Historic Gaol. Wander through cells and dungeons and watch a unique combination of actors, visual material, interactive displays and reconstruction bring history to life. Wicklow Town itself has a history reaching back over 4,000 years. The town’s fine-looking working harbour, a hive of activity, is also well worth a visit. There is also a good range of nice shops in town. www.wicklowshistoricgaol.com. Wicklow Town is 50 minutes from Kippure Estate.
Greenan Farm, Museum & Maze – for all the family! Visitors will delight in a fun filled day with an exciting Celtic hedge maze, 3 extensive farm museums, farm animals, nature trail, the lovely cottage tea room and craft shop. 45 minutes from Kippure Estate. www.greenanmaze.com
Fishing at Blessington Lakes - this is the largest reservoir (5,000 acres) in Ireland and is 19 miles from Dublin. It has 50 miles of shoreline with many inlets and bays, which offer the angler excellent game and coarse fishing. The lake is controlled and managed by the Electricity Supply Board and a permit for all types of fishing is required. Blessington Lakes can be reached within 15 minutes. More info at: www.southdublintourism.ie (go to ‘things to do’ and then ‘fishing’).
Tulfarris Golf Course was designed by Ireland's renowned golf architect, Patrick J. Merrigan. The imaginative use of the natural landscape to blend an exciting design into an excellent golf layout is evident throughout the course. The course is set on three peninsulas overlooking Blessington Lakes.
Enjoy a round of golf – 5 minutes drive from Kippure Estate you’ll find Lisheen Springs Golf Club, a golf course in an area of much natural beauty. This Nick Bielenberg designed course, built to the highest USGA standards, offers a challenge to the competitive golfer, whilst still managing to encourage the efforts of the more social player. www.lisheenspringsgolfclub.com
Ballinastoe Mountain Bike Trail system, takes the rider through some beautiful forest with views east over Calary Common and the Sugarloaf with the sea beyond. At the top of the trail, Lough Tay and the mountains beyond give views worth the effort of the climb. Please go to www.visitwicklow.ie or www.coillteoutdoors.ie for detailed information.
Time for you… We all need to give ourselves some TLC from time to time. Only 15 minutes from us you find a fabulous world of relaxation in the Annex Day Spa. Savour the experience: Hydroflotation, Hot Tub, Dead Sea Salt Brushing & Massages, and Facial & Body Treatments. Brochure from our office. www.theannexclinic.com
Let’s go shopping! The opportunities for a bit of “retail therapy” and holiday shopping are endless: Local Art & Craft shops, Wicklow Town, Powerscourt, Avoca Handweavers, Dublin City … just let our helpful reception staff know what you are looking for and they will point you into the right direction.
Clara Lara Fun Park - 50 acres of adventure and fun for families with kids. Set in the heart of the Wicklow Mountains and only 35 minutes from Kippure Estate you’ll find www.claralara.com
It’s a rainy day… One of Dublin’s leading children indoor play centres, Tallaght Adventure World, currently has a large climbing frame where children from as young as four can let their imagination take hold - from being a pirate finding buried treasure to being the monkey in a jungle. To top it off, there is a huge slide to bring you all the way back down, where the adventure starts all over again. For the younger ones, there are smaller areas, where they too can climb and slide and play in a pool full of balls. 20 minutes drive from Kippure Estate.
Diamond Bowl and KidZone – offers all sorts of indoor entertainment all under one roof. Their friendly staff will assist and advise you, weather you come for the ten-pin bowling or the thrill of the arcade games. KidZone is the place to entertain the kiddies with all sorts of indoor adventure in a safe environment with coffee dock for mum and dad. Located within walking distance of Wicklow town and close to the seafront. www.kidzonewicklow.com
Dublin City – your stay in Wicklow would not be complete without a visit to nearby Dublin. Rich in tradition and culture, Dublin city has a rich blend of history, architectural beauty, wonderfully friendly locals and a great nightlife rolled into one. City Centre is 45 minutes from Kippure Estate. www.visitdublin.ie
Centre for Peace and Reconciliation, Glencree German Cemetery - set at the head of Wicklow’s stunning Glencree valley, this former 18th century British army barracks brings you a range of attractive facilities in a tranquil and beautiful setting. Visitors can enjoy art exhibitions, as well as a visit to the Coffee Shop. Across the road is one of Ireland’s War Memorials, the Glencree German Cemetery. www.glencree.ie / www.irishwarmemorials.ie