Carlow is a vibrant town with a rich rural history, surrounded by a picturesque countryside. However, with so many attractions it can be difficult deciding what to see. Here are ten reasons to visit to county Carlow.
Ever wanted to go to a chocolate factory? The chocolate Garden of Ireland is a modern chocolate and ice cream factory. Offering tours where you can try award winning handmade chocolate, hot chocolate and ice cream. A paradise for anyone with a sweet tooth. The chocolate garden also offers daily chocolate mold making. Here you can decorate your own coco creation and enjoy delicious ice cream while you wait for your mold to set. The Gardens is sure to be a favorite with kids, boasting slides and sandpits and other leisure activities in the play zones. https://carlowtourism.com/the-chocolate-garden-of-ireland/
Experience your world in a new way, in the largest art gallery in Ireland. VISUAL centre is a cultural gem in the middle of Carlow town and displays, local and international, contemporary art with free admission. This theatre hosts a diverse range of theatre, talks and events. There is a permanent free Make and Do space for families to sit and make art with the themes of the season exhibition. http://www.visualcarlow.ie
Winner of the Trip Advisor certificate of excellence, Delta is a perfect space for anyone wanting peace and tranquility. These scenic gardens consist of 2.5 acres of land, decorated by of the country’s top designers. Beginning as a centre for people with intellectual disabilities, it has now become one of Ireland’s leading attractions. The Delta Sensory Gardens also a craft shop, cafe and hosts events throughout the year. https://carlowtourism.com/delta-sensory-gardens/
Journey back in time with a visit to the Carlow County Museum. This museum offers guided tours about the rich history of Carlow. This includes everything from the ancient burial sites to the county’s landmark sugar factory. The museum also has a focus on more recent cultural achievements from influential personalities and Carlow sport clubs. https://carlowtourism.com/carlow-county-museum-2/
Rancho Reilly is the ultimate location for family fun. This Ranch in the Carlow countryside has everything your kids could possible want. A pet farm, crazy golf, sunken trampolines and picnic tables, are just some of the many things in the outdoor area. The more easygoing, indoor area contains a soft area for children aged 3-11 and a comfortable coffee shop, with a burning stove so the adults can relax. https://carlowtourism.com/rancho-reilly-pet-farm-and-childrens-activity-centre/
Are you a fan of the Tudors? Then you’ll love the Tudor Gothic Mansion. Borris House was modeled after an 18th century house and a former 15th century castle, making it a landmark of Irish architectural history. Tours to see this mighty mansion can be booked online. https://carlowtourism.com/borris-house/
When it comes to brewing companies people tend to think of Smithwicks and Guinness. However the Carlow Brewing company or as it’s also known the O’Hara Brewing company, is one of the largest brewery in Ireland. After 100 years this brewery revived, Carlows long tradition of malt and hop production. During the Carlow Brewing Company tour you can meet the brewing team and discover Ireland’s wonderful craft beer history. The tour also includes the chance to taste and compare award winning brews. https://carlowtourism.com/carlow-brewing-company-2/
If you enjoy outdoor activities then this is the place for you. Go With The Flow Adventures has canoe fun for every level. This includes water rapids and a river safari. Go With The Flow also organise Hen and Stag day outs, which will make your special day, original and unforgettably fun. https://carlowtourism.com/go-with-the-flow-river-adventures-2/
Originally constructed in 1625 by Sir Laurence Esmonde, Huntington castle screams authenticity. So much so that the relatives of Esmonde still live there today. The Huntington Castle boasts some impressive features, such as the Georgian terraces and castellated victorian extensions. The castle offers 45 minute tours where you visit the Victorian kitchen, Jacobean hall, 17th century pond and even a spooky temple in the basement of the castle. Outside Huntington Castle there is also some 500 years old gardens, making for a stunning wedding location. https://carlowtourism.com/huntington-castle-2/
The distillery is dedicated to the production of premium handcrafted Irish whiskeys. It is unique as the only distillery in Ireland where all three forms of Irish whiskey (pot still, malt and grain) are distilled in the same still room. The distillery is manually controlled so that the spirit it produces is guided by the expertise of our team of local distillers. It is one of the largest distilleries in Ireland capable of producing 650,000 cases or 8 million bottles of whiskey a year.
Visitors to Royal Oak relax in a sylvan setting while learning about Irish whiskey distilling by interacting directly with their team of local distillers. These craftsmen expertly distil each batch of new make spirit that will ultimately become a premium whiskey for enjoyment. Smelling and tasting whiskey at various stages of its development is part of what is an immersive experience that extends to the grounds of the Royal Oak estate.
Visitors can stroll around the grounds and take in the ongoing renovation of the estate’s original centrepiece, Holloden House. This stately home was built in circa 1755, some four years before the legendary Guinness brewery at Saint James’ Gate in Dublin. It also predates the French Revolution, American Independence, the births of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Jane Austen and the establishment of Canada, Australia and New Zealand. Dating from this era of Emperors and Royalty goes someway to explaining why the renovation will ultimately cost a King’s ransom when completed several years from now!
For more information on these attractions and the many other things to see in Carlow, visit carlowtourism.com