It was zillions of years ago when I was last in Clonea beach in County Waterford. My sister and I were staying with our cousins in Tipperary and we were taken to Clonea for the day. Great craic and a gorgeous day it was for it too. It's a lovely clean beach on Dungarvan Bay, West Waterford
Billed as Ireland's Only Flyover Pub, Jack Meade's is a must for a stop off on a road trip around Co. Waterford. It must surely be one of the pretties little pubs in Ireland. The original building is an old cottage built quite literally under a bridge and the very large gardens around it have been utilised with the utmost brilliance.
First of all, there's a large, newly built building which houses a huge bar and a food area. There are wooden tables and benches in the garden directly outside this where people sit to eat and drink. Extremely popular in the Summer, you would want to get there early at weekends to get your seat. The food is mainly barbecue style, although they have a large menu plus some delicious desserts at great value for money prices.
Beside this area there is a large playground for the kids and directly adjoining this is a museum of antique farm machinery.
The river Pill runs through the grounds of the pub and a little wooden bridge has been built across the river to a beautifully landscaped area which houses some restored stone buildings. A little paved river walk has been added and most recently an area has been fenced off for ducks and geese.
In addition to all of this, there's an animal sanctuary and a longer river walk.
To find this little gem of a place, driuve out of Waterford in the direction of Dunmore East. Take the left at the junction to Passage/Cheekpoint. Drive on for a mile or so to the next forked junction and take a right. You will pass almost immediately under a bridge and the pub is just on your left.
If you drive out the road from Waterford City in the direction of Cork and travel as far as Kilmeaden Village, take a left and follow the signs for Bonmahon and you will find yourself in the most delightful beach area.
We used to come here a lot when we were younger and I recall one November afternoon we ventured out swimming in the sea and the waves were huge. I would have been a young teenager at the time and I have never forgotten the breathlessness of this experience.
Bonmahon is a lovely secluded beach and not many kow about it, so you'll be sure to have a peaceful sunbathe or beach walk here.
There are lovely and interesting rock formations that make great subjects for the avid photographer.
You could, if you wished, forage for mussels on these rocks and children happily and safely play in the rock pools.
If you get hungry there's a nice little chip shop in the village, and a pub for a cool pint of beer.
The direct access to the beach is hard to spot and most recently when I was there I got onto the beach through a slipway beside a pub. Keep an eye out for parked cars and you'll find the beach entrance there.
I told you it was secluded:-)
If you take the lesser known coast road when driving from Tramore to Dungarvan you will pass through a tiny village called Annestown. Here you will find a beautiful cove-type secluded beach. It's a great place to go for some quiet sunbathing as you won't fuind it overrun like most Summer beaches.
On the left as you look towards the sea are the ruins shown in one of the pics posted here. I have no idea what they are but they make a great subject for a pic. I imagine that they were part of one of the many lookout towers that once dotted the Irish coast, but strangely there isn't even a notice explaining what they are. I spotted a notice on the walls and went close to take a pic - it was an ad for a local restaurant! I was disappointed and a little disgusted.
In my introduction to Waterford you will have read that the County is proud to boast many wonderful beaches.
The one we visited a lot when we were young was Woodstown. Drive out the Dunmore East Road and take the left fork at the signpost for Woodstown/Dunmore.
I remember my face stinging with salt water and sun at the end of a day running wild on the beach. At that stage of the evening my Dad would always treat us to lemonade and crisps at the Saratoga bar and we would sit outside on the grass with our impromptu picnic. The Saratoga is still going strong and is most recently famous as Richard Gere drinks here when he visits Waterford.
The sand is soft and powdery on this beach, but as you head towards the water it becomes muddy as the river meets the ocean in this area so you get a lot of silt.
That saying, it's a lovely place to come to walk on the long beach, or to soak up the sun. It's inclined to be a quiet place, and indeed the only pub is the aforementioned Saratoga.
There's a long grassy area behind the beach and we used to have many picnics here. You will see why it was named Woodstown, as there are lots of deep woods around it. It has not been spoiled by the development that has devoured much of rural Ireland.
Jackie Kennedy also used to come here on her holidays many years ago, so you certainly won't be slumming it:-)
One final tip - when the tide is out it's a great place to forage for cockles.
I'm sure that most people around the world would consider them big hills, but we like to call the local range of, eh, big hills The Comeragh Mountains.
It's a terrific place to go for a day out in the country. I remember when we were little kids my parents would regularly bring us during the summer, we would take a picnic and a little stove, run wild through the heather and walk barefoot in the winding stream and the pools at the base of the waterfall.
Oh yes, the waterfall is known as Mahon falls and is very pretty at any time of the year. OK, it's not exactly Angel Falls, but it is the Irish version of a waterfall. I guess we are renowned for our little leprechauns so you might well say that we have leprechaun sized mountains and waterfalls:-)
You can get to these mountains by driving out of Waterford in the direction of Cork, and taking the turn off to the right which is well marked.
When you're up the Comeragh drive there's a place where they say the cars will run forward, uphill, even with the engines swiched off - some freak of gravity I think.
It's a wonderful place to take photographs, too. I'll post a couple of mine here for you to see.
Saleens beach is beautiful, remote, and almost deserted. It's also the most beautiful seaside place in Waterford to watch the sun set.
It's hard to find this beach, and even many of the locals won't know how to get there. head out the road from Waterford City, take a left at the exit for Dunmore, you will pass a tiny country pub on the left and the turn for Saleens is on the right about a mile past that pub.
Although I have lived here for much of my life, I only discovered this place last year. You drive down a very narrow country road - the kind with grass growing up the middle - until you get to a fairly generous parking area.
There's a long, narrow, shingly beach and if you walk to the end you will meet up with mellow anglers whiling the day away, waiting patiently for a tug on the line.
I strolled along watching the sun set behind a little island. It was magical. As I turned and looked at the brush on the bank behind the beach, I saw the setting sun turn it to burnished gold.
It would be an ideal place for a romantic January sunset proposal of marriage, or more practically a great place for a quiet summer picnic.
The pics I'm going to post hardly do the place justice.
There are no shops, no pubs, no stalls or hurdy gurdys - just genuine seaside peace and quiet.
We went en famille to Mount Mellary monastery a few years ago. It's located in the Vee - which is a valley up in the Knockmealdown mountains, west county Waterford.
Apparently Mary (as in Jesus's mum) appeared to local children in the 1980s and a grotto was built in Mount Mellary to commemorate the vision. The monastery was founded by French monks and it is possible to stay in the monastery free of charge, provided you do some work on the grounds or you just make a contribution.
I dont have a photo of the monastery so i downloaded it from http://www.isos.dcu.ie/mtmel/english/background/mtmelabbey.html
The beaches....without a car, you can get a local bus to Tramore, where you can ignore the slightly tacky town and concentrate on the fantastic beach. Or, if you have a car, Woodstown beach, on the way to Dunmore. My favourite..wild, beautiful, and you can see across the bay to Co. Wexford.
COUNTY WEXFORD: Lying in the southeast corner of Ireland, Co Wexford has an enviable sunshine record, beautiful countryside and a string of delightful harbour towns and sandy beaches.
The climate is milder than elsewhere and produces a number of stunning gardens, open to the public by arrangement.
Built close to the mouth of the River Slaney, Wexford is a busy commercial and fishing town named by Vikings. Shops, pubs and an atmospheric charm make Wexford an appealing place to visit.
The Irish National Heritage Park at Ferrycarrig, northwest of Wexford comprises 17 sites linking Ireland's history from prehistoric times to medieval.
As a swiss person I couldn’t resist to visit the Swiss Cottage once I found it on my map. The Swiss Cottage was a residence for rich persons, constructed in a very unsual way. Every window has a different shape.
You will find the Swiss Cottage on the road between “Clonmel” and “Cahir”, coming from Waterford.
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