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Southeast Ireland--not mentioned often. Do you know it?

Southeast Ireland--not mentioned often. Do you know it?

Old Apr 27th, 2010, 05:53 AM
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Southeast Ireland--not mentioned often. Do you know it?

Everyone seems to be heading for SW Ireland, but we are contemplating a bike trip in the southeast area in the second half of May. There is not nearly as much discussion here about this area, and I wonder why. The trip we are looking at is supposedly on the back roads so we won't need to fight traffic, and the area is supposed to be less hilly than the west for those of us who don't like to do a lot of hill climbing. Locations in the area of the trip are Bagenalstown, Kilkenny, Castlecomer, Muckalee, Ballyfoyle, Thomastown, Arthurstown, Inistioge, Dunmore East, Campile, Kilmore Quay, Wexford, Waterford, Tomhaggard, St. Mullins, Clonroche, Balywilliam, and Graiguenamanagh. We can tailor our trip to include or exclude some of these places, so all feedback will help.

We are not looking to see any major tourist attractions but would like to do a bit of sightseeing on our way. We are primarily looking for an interesting area to cycle in with nice scenery, a few places to stop and look around, nice gardens or flowers along the way, some historical interest, fairly frequent interesting small villages etc. We are not looking to spend our time cycling in newly built up beach resort types places although a half a day or so of that would be ok.

If you know this area, can you please comment on the general ambience and interest of the area. Are some of these locations not so interesting? For example, I've read mixed reviews of Kilmore Quay. Any assistance you can give me is appreciated. Thanks.
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Old Apr 28th, 2010, 05:30 AM
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The southeast is supposed to have the best chance of good weather in Ireland--a statistic that might be of interest if you are biking.

Re Kylemore Quay. It is a lovely little village of thatched houses and lots of flowers. Took a lot of pictures there. If the silver Fox is still there, have supper there. I am not a foodie, but I remember that meal as wonderful! It is also a jumping off point for a visit to the Saltee islands for birding opportunities. At the time I was there, there were no organized tours to the islands; just go down to the harbor and negtiate with one of the boatmen.

I like Kilkenny a lot. The castle and gardens, medieval streets, St. Canice's cathedral and the round tower, Blackfriars abbey. Kytelers Inn has an interesting history and good early bird specials in the evening. Also good food later in the evening. Can't remember about lunch there.

Waterford and Wexford are a bit gritty and I might not choose to bike there. The factory at Waterford is closed. Bike out to Hookhead and the lighthouse. Interesting little museum and pleasant cafe with homemade scones and baked goods.

Can't tell you first hand about the other places you mention. But Inistioge is where "Circle of Friends" was filmed.
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Old Apr 28th, 2010, 05:54 AM
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We traveled some in that area last spring. I don't know what map you are using, but we used the Rough Guide map of Ireland and it points out lots of sites in out-of-the-way places such as high crosses, abbeys, and dolmens.
Like Irishface, we enjoyed Kilkenny very much and spent a nice evening in Kytelers Inn having dinner and later listening to the music.
If you get a chance to go as far west as Cashel, don't miss the Rock of Cashel. (Actually, it's a bit hard to miss it!) Our visit there was one of the high points of our trip to Ireland.
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Old Apr 28th, 2010, 06:11 AM
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I went to Kilmore Quay just over 3 years ago and loved it. Great base for touring the area, lovely places to eat, nice beach. What bad things have you heard? I'm Irish so would naturally be put off anywhere that was just geared towards the tourists, and I certainly didn't find that. We didn't do a trip to the Saltees but if it was possible would do that next time.

We stayed in a B&B just outside Kilmore Quay called Fortview House (or perhaps Forthview House, I did a search on the internet and it came up as both). We had a great time there and while not a farm as such it was like a menagerie, the owner Pennie's dog had just had puppies (she breeds them) and she was hatching eggs into chicks in one of the bedrooms. For breakfast she offered us haddock she had smoked herself. I would highly recommend it.

One of the other places we considered staying but was full was Mill Road Farm: http://www.millroadfarm.com/
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Old Apr 28th, 2010, 06:31 AM
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I much prefer the East of Ireland to the West and as someone said the weather is a little better as it is more sheltered. I have very fond memories of childhood holidays in Dunmore East (many, many years ago), lovely spot.

I am not a big fan of either Wexford or Waterford but Kilkenny and Castlecomer are lovely.

Enjoy your bike trip .
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