A Little Time and a Keyboard: Day in Glendalough and Kilkenny {Ireland Vacation}

Day in Glendalough and Kilkenny {Ireland Vacation}

Friday, May 8, 2015

From the Gravity Bar at the Guinness Storehouse in Dublin, we could see the stunning Wicklow Mountains in the distance. We absorbed the view with a fervent anticipation of a trip into Wicklow and beyond later in the week. The day finally came and we were pretty excited.

Our drive through the Wicklow Mountains was equally peaceful and awe inspiring. The landscape is entirely gorgeous and is actually the same scenery as seen in many movies and television shows that we are all familiar with. During our drive, we drove past a place where Vikings is filmed. Totally cool!

One of our main stops for this leg of our journey was the majestic natural escape of Glendalough. Glendalough has two striking glacial mirror lakes that will definitely keep you mesmerized for some time. The preserve is pristine and magical to walk around.

Many movies were filmed at the mirror lake in Glendalough, Ireland.

In this "Valley of the Two Lakes, " we also found the ruins of a monastic settlement. The settlement was pretty interesting to walk around and included a pretty impressive round tower that added to the overall scenery.

Be prepared to take plenty of pictures while visiting Glendalough! Throughout our visit, we were inspired by moss covered trees, babbling brooks, gentle waterfalls and more at every turn. We even spotted some deer which was pretty cool! While in Glendalough, also be sure to check out the Visitor's Center and shopping.

Can you see the deer?
 After visiting, Glendalough we ambled to Kilkenny to spend the afternoon. Kilkenny is an absolutely charming medieval city that quickly became one of our favorite spots in Ireland. Kilkenny is situated right on a river which coupled with charming old buildings makes for quite a picturesque environ to amble around.

Kilkenny Castle is gracefully perched right above the River Nore. When you find a castle, anyone traveling with a 10-year-old girl needs to visit the castle, right? So, we did and my daughter was absolutely thrilled. As opposed to Dublin Castle where we could take photos, we could not take any inside of Kilkenny Castle. So for once, this blogger had a bit of a rest! Kilkenny Castle is an Anglo-Norman Castle originally constructed in the early 13th century. While there have been changes to the castle, the self-guided tour does include entrance into an original Norman Tower which was really cool and probably our favorite moment of the tour! The Moorish Staircase is pretty cool too and quite breathtaking! There is a tea room in the castle which had a nice selection of sweets and provides a nice place for a respite. {Of course, there are bites to eat other than the sweets--however, the sweets did look particularly appealing!}

Families visiting Kilkenny Castle in Ireland

The grounds of Kilkenny Castle are popular spots for people to lounge and relax with family. The Rose Garden has a gorgeous fountain and probably is entirely spectacular when the roses in bloom. The courtyard and adjacent lawn is quite a wonderful space to stretch out and relax or even walk about. I mean you are in the shadows of a castle! Such a pleasant experience!

Across from the castle is the Kilkenny Design Center which is the place to stop to pick up something to remind you of Ireland when you return home. There are several stores FULL of products and art made in Ireland. We easily found a few pieces of Ireland for our collection! There is also a nice cafeteria in the upstairs for a bite. However, there are numerous restaurants in Kilkenny, so you will easily find a spot to eat!

Such a wonderful an complete day! Both Kilkenny and Glendalough provided us with the magic that is Ireland!

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