County Wicklow is rightly known as the Garden of Ireland, such is its majestic beauty in so many forms. Famous for the incredible mountain ranges that are contained within such a small area, Wicklow has many other attractions that add to the desire to explore this place, none more so than the village of Avoca and the famous Meeting of the Waters.
At the Meeting of the Waters, the Avonmore and Beg rivers come together to form the Avoca River.
It was here that Thomas Moore penned his famous Irish Melody, “The Meeting of the Waters”.
The Meeting Of The Waters,
There is not in the wide world a valley so sweet
As that vale in whose bosom the bright waters meet;
Oh! the last rays of feeling and life must depart,
Ere the bloom of that valley shall fade from my heart.
Yet it was not that nature had shed o`er the scene
Her purest of crystal and brightest of green;
`Twas not her soft magic of streamlet or hill,
Oh! no - it was something more exquisite still.
`Twas that friends, the beloved of my bosom, were near,
Who made every dear scene of enchantment more dear,
And who felt how the best charms of nature improve,
When we see them reflected from looks that we love.
Sweet vale of Avoca! how calm could I rest
in thy bosom of shade, with the friends I love best,
Where the storms that we feel in this cold world should cease,
And our hearts, like thy waters, be mingled in peace.
County Wicklow is less than one hour South of Dublin City Centre with commuter links by rail, bus and motorway. Known as The Garden of Ireland, County Wicklow is one of Ireland's true scenic treasures with its magnificent hills and mountains, long sandy beaches, rivers and lakes. It is the perfect holiday destination, suitable either for a family vacation or a short, romantic weekend break.
Things to do
Avoca Village was the location of the very popular BBC Television series “Ballykissangel”. The village set includes the Church of Saints Mary and Patrick, built in 1862 and “Fitzgeralds” the local watering hole.
Avoca is situated in a picturesque valley, which extends from the Meeting of the Waters to Woodenbridge. Local tourist attractions include forest and hill walks, the Mottee Stone, Avoca Hand Weavers, craft shops, traditional music, trout fishing, golfing and of course the famous Meeting of the Waters. The quiet genteel atmosphere that engulfs the village embraces the visitor in its grasp and imparts a compelling desire to stay there and forget about the woes of the woprld.
Woodenbridge just up the road is another "Meeting of the Waters" where the Aughrim and Avoca rivers join. The area came to great prominence during the mining period of gold and cooper. A few miles southwest of Woodenbridge is Croghan Kinsella, a mountain at the head of the Gold Mines River where in 1796 the finding of a nugget there led to a gold rush. Woodenbridge is a great location for golfing, angling, shooting, orienteering, pony trekking and picturesque walks.
Close by is Glenart forest, which has forest walks, a picnic site, rhododendron drive and a viewing point of the Vale of Avoca. Depending on your energy levels you can choose from two walks. The first is a short 2km walk through enchanting oak wood and the charming village of Avoca. A longer walk, 8.5km long, meanders through pine woodland, returning by country road with superb views of Wicklow.
The Wicklow Mountains National Park was established in 1991 and is owned by the people of Ireland. It consists of an extensive upland area of Ireland and one of the country's most beautiful regions. The 400 million year old mountains and the more recent glaciated features blend well with the animal and plant life there today. A large population of deer occupies the open mountain area of the park.
The national park has no restrictions to visitors and is open to the public 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
Also to be found in The Wicklow Mountains National Park is the famous early Christian monastic site and one of Ireland's most popular visitor attractions, Church Mountain, is a circular cairn of stones, probably the remains of the passage tomb. The centre of the cairn has been hollowed out to form an enclosure in which there are the foundations of a church and a well.
There are numerous sources of accommodation in the Avoca area ranging from basic hostel facilities to 5-star luxury hotels. Perhaps the best way of all to explore the area and to get to know the people is to stay in B&B’s or the many guesthouses dotted throughout the area. You are assured of a warm welcome and will get access to useful information that never appears on a travel guide.
Wicklow County Tourism Ltd.
Wicklow Enterprise Park
Wicklow Town - County Wicklow - Ireland
Tel: +353(0)404 20070
Fax: +353(0)404 20072
Wicklow County Tourism is delighted to announce that members Wild Wicklow Tours have been voted Number 3 Tour Worldwide in 2008 by Hostelworld.com. Over 800,000 Hostelworld.com customers from around the globe voted in the poll.
In spite of tough economic times, Wild Wicklow Tours invested over €500,000 in late 2008 on a new fleet of coaches at a time when other companies in the Tourism industry are scaling down.
Wild Wicklow Tours, owned by Denis and Angela O Reilly, is entering its 12th year in business running daily coach tours from Dublin to Wicklow. Over 25,000 tourists a year experience the Wild Wicklow Tour which, as the name would suggest, is not your typical Coach Tour. Customers are typically talked and walked through the sights and sounds of Wicklow but there are many surprises along the way.
Commenting on the poll, owner Denis O’Reilly said “We are absolutely thrilled with these results. We are a family owned and run business and work very hard at ensuring that we continue to add an unexpected twist to your stereotypical standard Coach Tour. Ultimately, our success is attributable to the fact that we have a great team who understand what guests want from their holiday in Ireland; beautiful scenery, a friendly face, a few facts, but most importantly, lots of laughs.”
WILD WICKLOW TOURS
Explore one of the most famous and enchanting places in Ireland, Glendalough. The spectacular hidden mountains and barren boglands at Sally's Gap will leave you breathless.
Winner of Tourism Business Millennium Award
Full day tour to Glendalough
Day includes: (N.B. This Depends on where you join the tour whether Dublin City , Dun Laoghaire Ferry Terminal or Avoca Handweavers, Kilmacanogue, Co Wicklow - see collection points below)
• Short City tour
• Coastal drive past DunLaoghaire Harbour, Dalkey and Killiney, home to the rich and famous.
• Avoca Handweavers - Morning Coffee* and craft shopping
• Glendalough - We personally guide you through this enchanting 6th Century Monastic Settlement followed by a gentle walk to the magnificent Upper Lake.
• Pub Lunch - Home cooking in a traditional Irish Pub*
• Sally Gap Adventure - mountain lakes, wild heather and barren boglands (location for Braveheart)
* Not incl. in price of tour.
Full Day: 09:00 - 17:30
Price: Adult €28.00, Student / Child €25.00
(includes all admission charges)
Collection Points: (N.B. For those staying in Co Wicklow take the DART / Train to Dun Laoghaire for 10.00 or TAXI to Avoca Handweavers,Kilmacanogue, Co Wilcklow for 11:00.)
08:50 The Shelbourne Hotel, St Stephens Green
09:10 Dublin Tourism (on front steps), Suffolk Street
09:20 The Gresham Hotel, O' Connell Street
09:40 Jury's Hotel, Ballsbridge
10:00 Dun Laoghaire Ferry Terminal (behind The DART Station)
11:00 Avoca Handweavers, Kilmacanogue, Co Wicklow
c 17:00 - 17:30 Returns to Jury's Hotel Ballsbridge & Trinity College
(N.B. For those staying in Co Wicklow ask the driver to drop you in Kilmacanogue, Co Wicklow for connecting bus or TAXI or at DART station on route to Dublin City)
Book Now at www.wildwicklow.ie/Booknow.asp
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"Award winning Wild Wicklow Tours have earned rave reviews from participants and Tourism Authorities alike. The guides are all uniformly excellent with plenty of energy and a terrific sense of humour that generates a kind of camaraderie not common on tours".
Lonely Planet - Dublin
"Wild Coach Tours cover the region with an entertaining guide packing every minute with information fun and craic. With a gang of 30..... in comfortable mountain hugging buses, the guide kicks into gear from the first pickup in Dublin"
Rick Steves, Ireland
"Go off the beaten track in a small Mercedes coach to see the most amazing spots in the Wicklow Mountains, accompanied by excellent and entertaining guides who speak of legends and folklore... "
Frommer's Ireland for Dummies
"I spend more time in hotel rooms than the Gideon Bible.Tour constantly. Travel a hundred thousand miles a year,looking for interesting people and places. Done that for three decades. ---- No one. No one offers a better day for avisitor than Wild Wicklow Tours. The tour is tops in my book."
Bob Dotson - NBC News Today Show
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