In Dublin we took a wonderful tour with Paddywagon to Kilkenny, Glendalough and the Wicklow Mountains and i can really recommend this. First we stopped in Glendalough where we had an hour or so to take a look at the visitors center, the old ruins and take a walk up to the lake where we also saw some deer. We then headed through beautiful countryside, passing by the area where Braveheart, the Vikings series and PS I Love You were filmed. We arrived at Kilkenny for a late lunch and were given 2 1/2 hours to explore the city. This city was won the award several times for being the most beautiful city in Ireland. The cost of the tour was around 25 euro, we were picked up at 8 am and arrived back at 6pm. The bus driver gave us excellent information along the route.
Glendalough is a glacial valley in County Wicklow and is an ancient monastic city dating back to the Middle Ages. It was discovered by St. Kevin, a hermit priest. Glendalough literally means "the valleys of two lakes", i.e. the Upper Lake and the Lower Lake. When we were at Glendalough we visited only the Upper Lake where almost all visitors to Glendalough come to visit. We were told that the Lower Lake is not really well maintained, so most visitors will bypass the Lower Lake.
Both lakes of Glendalough are located within the area of Wicklow Mountains National Park which has a total area of approximately 200 square kilometers, reaching as far as the southern end of Dublin city. Wicklow Mountains National Park is only one of the six national parks in the Republic of Ireland. The national park was established only in 1991. There are several walking trails around both lakes of Glendalough. All begin at the information office near the Upper Lake. Visitors can also purchase maps of the walking trails from the information office.
The Upper Lake is incredibly beautiful it has to be said. You can stay there for hours and really admire and enjoy its beauty. Sadly we did not have time for that. The weather was also not so kind to us. Nevertheless we still enjoyed the quiet environment of the beautiful Upper Lake that day.
If you're in Ireland,this Is another place to visit...This was an old settlement in the past and i heard Monks used to stay here but now it is turned into a grave side. there is a Hiking route from here to the Mountain So you need some energy to overcome the fatigue.
The views AROUND this Valley are just Amazing.Its a must see...
Visit any Tourism Office in Dublin for more Info...
This early Christian monastic site was founded by St Kevin during the 6th century. It is set in a glaciated valley with two lakes. At the visitor centre you can watch the interesting exhibition as well as an audio-visual show. The site remains inlcude a round tower, stone churches and decorated crosses.
As we were driving, my sister saw a signpost for a coffee shop and we followed it. the road took us to Glandalough. This place is an early Christian monastic site founded by St Kevin in the 6th century. A very interesting place to visit.
There are lots of scenic areas within easy reach of Dublin so you could base yourself there and take a different direction each day as suggested above to places like Bray, Howth, Malahide, Greystones etc, all accessible by bus or DART (local train which hugs the coastline).
Inland, Glendalough is an area of great natural beauty in Co. Wicklow, not too far from Dublin. You could visit it on an organised day trip from Dublin or you could travel on the public bus (www.glendaloughbus.com)and stay overnight. There is one hotel (www.glendaloughhotel.com)and several B&Bs and hostels in the area between Glendalough and Laragh(the nearest village).
More info at:
I live in Dublin and know Co.Wicklow quite well so feel free to get back to me if you need any clarification or further info.
All the best,
Glendalough meanins Glen of Two Lakes and is a valley located in County Wicklow, Ireland, The valley was formed during the last ice age by a glacier. Today it is best known for its amazing greenery and the renowned Early Medieval monastic settlement founded in the 6th century.
This place is great for all kinds of outdoor activities, nature lovers and history buffs. The monastic site is nice, the old mines and town are even better, but that is not all this place has to offer.
There are many walking trails of varying difficulty around Glendalough. Within the valley itself there are nine walking trails maintained by Wicklow Mountains National Park (all from information office, maps available). Glendalough is also famous for its Rock climbing opportunities, if you enjoy this sport try the cliffs on the north-western side of the valley. It is fairly safe as there are a lot of climbers coming from all over Ireland.
This location is also a wonderfull family spot, with a lot of free space for the kids to run around, to play soccer or other outdoor games. Or simply to have a family picnic. Best way to spend quality time with your children! It is an amazing place with fresh water, green trees and beautiful views. If you are in Ireland this is a must - to - do spot!
It's a bit difficult to look for a place to park your car during weekend as it's crowded with tourists as well as locals. There is a very nice grass field where u can lay there enjoying the sun and watch the children play. After your visit to the Glendalough Tower, turn right into an area where you can get some nice postcards. We got ourselves each an ice-cream cone from the ice-cream truck. We didnt go for the horsecart ride though.
Glendalough is an interesting place for a dayexcursion from Dublin with an old roundtower, the remains of an old monastery and church.
On my 1st photograph : St.Kevin's Kitchen is the name of this small stone-church founded by St.Kevin during the 6th century.It was of course never used as a kitchen, but with the small bell-tower on top of that little church, that was similar to a oven-chimney, people used to call it St.Kevin's kitchen.
Glendalough is also a place to see some celtic crosses, and the ruins of an old monastery at a scenic lake.
On my last photo : The round tower of Glendalough is one of the few round towers left over in Ireland and science still has problems to find out about the purpose of these towers.
In the hight of about 5 meters above the ground there is a door that could be blocked in case of enemies approaching.
Glendalough translates to 'valley of the 2 lakes'. It was established by St. Kevin in the 6th century and developed into quite an important religious site. Most of the buildings date between the 8th and 12th centuries. The Round tower is one of the best in the country (its cap was restored in the 1870's).
Nice hiking paths around the site, and you can even hike from Dublin on the Wicklow Way.
We arrived on Good Friday and the place was crowded with people. Being only about 40 miles from Dublin it is apparently a very popular day trip. There was a band playing and concessionaires selling various snacks around the edges.
At the visitor's centre you can get a map containing several walks with different grades of distance and difficulty in the valley.
I did the orange one which is a good hike of 2 hours with stunning panorama's of the valley!
Beautiful valley just an hour south of Dublin.
St.Kevin founded a monastery here in the 6th century.
Later on it became famous as a centre of learning.
There are also some great hikes around this area!
My favorite picture of Glendalough is on my Ireland page - that one brings up the erethreal beauty of the area. The park has picnic areas, outdoor BBQs (actually reassigned tree stumps), wandering sheep who keep the grasses short, a stone circle, and wonderful walking paths.
If you wander the pathways, you will come across St Kevin's Keep, some church ruins w/ an old cemetary, and wonderful scenery. We only went down 2 or 3 of the pathways - there was so much more to see, but we didn't have the time :(
The little church/chapel ruins we found on our walk also has the remains of the original wall - one side has a section that initially looks like a seating area, but upon closer inspection, is a seating area that is shaped like a cross. It didn't photograph well, so instead I've included one of the first views of this chapel for us as we were wandering about ....
Ok, skipping across to the East coast of Ireland now, the county known as the Garden of Ireland is indeed a pretty green mountainous region.
County Wicklow is quite big, but its ideal if you only have a few days in Dublin and want to experience some of the countryside as well. The Tourist office in Dublin offers daytrips down to Glendalough and Avoca. If you are driving you can also make up your own itinerary.
Glendalough is a really nice day out, you can have lunch by the lake, and hike in the park, you will come across small streams and of course the old burial grounds.
Take a recommended self-guided tour: visit Lower Lake, Upper Lake, return to Lower Lake, and then walk to the ruins of St. Saviour's Priory, located in the middle of the wood. In total at least 3h. The most impressive part though is the ruins at Lower Lake.