Clonmel is a vibrant town located in County Tipperary, Ireland. It is situated on the banks of the River Suir and is known for its rich history, stunning landscapes, and friendly locals. Whether you are a history enthusiast, nature lover, or simply looking for a charming destination to explore, Clonmel has something to offer for everyone.
Clonmel has a fascinating history that dates back to ancient times. The town was originally founded by the Gaelic Chieftain Domhnall Mór Ua Conchobair in the 13th century. Over the centuries, it grew into an important market town and played a significant role in Ireland’s history. Today, visitors can explore the remnants of its past through its well-preserved historical sites and landmarks.
One of the most notable historical attractions in Clonmel is the Main Guard. This impressive building was constructed in the 17th century and served as a courthouse and military barracks. It now houses an exhibition that showcases the town’s history and heritage. Another must-visit site is St. Mary’s Church, which dates back to the 13th century and features stunning medieval architecture.
For those interested in learning more about Clonmel’s past, a visit to the Tipperary County Museum is highly recommended. The museum offers a comprehensive collection of artifacts and exhibits that depict the town’s history from prehistoric times to the present day.
Clonmel is surrounded by breathtaking natural landscapes that are perfect for outdoor enthusiasts. The nearby Comeragh Mountains provide ample opportunities for hiking, mountain biking, and scenic drives. The Nire Valley is particularly popular among nature lovers, offering picturesque views of rolling hills, cascading waterfalls, and tranquil lakes.
The River Suir also offers various recreational activities such as fishing, kayaking, and boating. Visitors can take leisurely walks along the riverbank or even embark on a river cruise to admire the town’s beauty from a different perspective.
ATTRACTIONS in and around Clonmel
Tipperary Museum of Hidden History
Deepen your Tipperary knowledge a little further a 15 minute spin away at the Tipperary Museum of Hidden History, which features two galleries to amble around. With a keen focus on history from prehistoric to modern times, its collection covers everything from military to religious, social history to political, archaeology, geology, townscapes and more.
Clonmel Food Market
Plan your visit strategically if you can, so you can head along to the Clonmel Food Market. The farmers’ market, which is held from 10am-2pm each Saturday, is full of locally grown and produced delights, from fresh, organic fruit and veg, to artisan cheeses and plenty of sweet nibbles. The smell of the freshly baked bread is enough to lure you in.
The Apple Farm
Halfway between Clonmel and Cahir, you’ll find the Apple Farm. Grown naturally and harvested when perfectly ripe, if you love apples, this is your heaven. Pick your own fruit to snack on during the harvest months from August until November – with over 50 different varieties to choose from, you won’t be short on choice. Watch the farm produce its award-winning apple juices in the off-season months and don’t leave without nabbing one of their freshly baked apple tarts to enjoy at home.
County Tipperary, is recognised as a demanding National Hunt course blessed with a scenic wooded setting. Also known as Powerstown Park, it has been operating for 160 years and provides excellent views of the racing from all points.
St. Patrick’s Well
St. Patrick’s Well continues to be a place of pilgrimage as well as a popular tourist attraction. It is one of the largest wells in Ireland and features an early-Christian, Celtic-style cross. The area also has a small church that dates from the 17th century and houses the altar tomb of the White family.
Carey’s Castle was formerly occupied by monks and up to recent years, the ruins of the alms house was still in evidence. There is a small lawn with picnic site close to the car park. A walk of about 500m takes you to Carey’s Castle, through mixed woodland and there is a pleasant walking path along the river bank for about 600m.
There are about 2 km of forest walks. Along the riverside walk there is a profusion of birch, oak, beech and ash with some spruce and larch. On the south side of the castle in what was the walled garden is a stand of Japanese larch and one of Old Scots pine. Other flora, woodrush, sorrel, grasses, ferns and sage. There is an abundance of birds and animals including the red squirrel and fallow deer. The sparrow hawk can sometimes be sighted. The Glenary river flows by the old castle ruins.
Fethard Horse Country Experience.
Learn about the relationship between the Irish people, the land and horses, and how they’re all inextricably linked, at this state-of-the-art interactive experience. Spread across two floors of a 17th century Tholsel building, that was formerly an almshouse, theatre space, marketplace, fire station and library. The first country market in Ireland took place here in 1957 and continues today every Friday morning.
Things to do
The River Suir is a noted trout river with good salmon runs, especially in the lower reaches. Angling Licences – needed for salmon angling – may be secured from The Regional Fisheries Board, Clonmel. Tel: 052 61 23624
Tipperary, famous for its horses, is a Mecca for the equestrian enthusiast. You haven’t really discovered Ireland until you’ve been racing. With over 30 races throughout the year in Tippeary, check it out for yourself. Clonmel Racecourse: Contact: DJ Histon (052) 61 22611
birds and wildlife
Marlfield Lake – Near Clonmel – developed bird sanctuary. Offering sightings of duck and dippers.
Clonmel Swimming Pool is located in Mick Delahunty Square, Clonmel and facilities include a Pool, Gym and Sauna.
Clonmel and its environs is a wonderful area for walks, for example Marlfield, the Nire Valley and to the Holy Year cross. Maps of these walks and many others are available from Clonmel Tourist Office. Tel: 052 61 22960
Glenbawn Loop contains three popular walks Fox Covert Loop, Glenbawn Loop & Dun Ui Faolain Loop. The woods teem with wildlife and diverse plant species and are a haven of solitude in today’s frantic world. The loop walks have been developed as part of a regeneration of the wood by a local community group called the Two Bridges Partnership.
Few counties offer as wide or as varied golfing opportunities as County Tipperary, ranging from the challenging 18 hole course at Clonmel with its spectacular mountain scenery to the parkland pleasures of Thurles (18 hole) with other delightful 18 hole courses at Cahir, Carrick-on-Suir and Tipperary Town and Slievenamon.