Waterford offers the choice between a cosmopolitan modern city, a cluster of seaside resorts and a mountainous hinterland, ideal for holidays of all kinds. The city is the capital of the South East and Ireland’s longest established city. Founded by the Vikings in 914, the history of this ancient port is maintained in its many remarkable buildings including Reginald’s Tower and Christ Church Cathedral.
Waterford is synonymous with hand-cut glass, and the world famous House Of Waterford Crystal is one of the region’s most popular tourist attraction. The history of Waterford is retold at the Waterford Museum of Treasures and on the highly entertaining Waterford City Walking Tour. Built on the River Suir estuary, Waterford City remains a thriving port with great shopping, accommodation, quality gourmet restaurants and a healthy mix of modern and traditional pubs. Waterford also hosts a colourful calendar of festivals throughout the year check local press and tourist offices for dates & times.
ATTRACTIONS in Waterford city
Waterford Treasures - 5 museums in the viking triangle
Five Museums in the Viking Triangle Open 7 days per week, year round. Café and gift shop on site. Guided tours available by our professional guides, which is included in your entry fee.
Don’t miss the Medieval Museum in the Viking Triangle, with its unique Cloth of Gold vestments which were lost for hundreds of years after they were hidden from Cromwell’s army, and the Great Charter Roll which was viewed by Queen Elizabeth II on her 2011 visit to Ireland. See the only piece of clothing to survive from King Henry VIII, the ‘Cap of Maintenance”.
Reginald’s Tower is named after the Viking leader who founded Waterford in 914, making Waterford Ireland’s oldest city. Don’t miss the 9th century sword and weapons from a Viking warrior’s grave and the magnificent 12th century gold kite brooch. Guided tours available. www.waterfordtreasures.com | www.facebook.com/waterfordtreasures
This magnificent Georgian residence is a must-see attraction. Experience authentic grand eighteenth century living in this beautiful Georgian building. Don’t miss the oldest surviving piece of Waterford Crystal in the world dating back to 1789, and the Napoleon Mourning Cross; the only one to survive out of the original twelve that were made on his death. Now includes the new “4D Masterpieces in Glass Making” which tells the story of glass making from the Penrose family who started glass making in Waterford in the 1900s up to modern day.
Irish Silver Museum
The Irish Silver Museum features one of the largest collections of Irish silver in the world. The museum takes the visitor on a one thousand year history of Ireland through beautiful pieces of silver made by superb craftsmen and women across the country. Highlights include Viking Silver, Dean Swift’s beer jug and silver associated with the theatres of fine dining and the luxury of tea and coffee-drinking in eighteenth-century Ireland.
Epic tour of the viking triangle
This guided tour, the ‘Epic Tour of the Viking Triangle’, includes access to seven national monuments ranging in date from 1190AD to 1783, is a wonderful way for visitors to get an overview of Irish history, both the historic and archaeological treasures and also experience the developments in architecture over a period of a thousand years as visitors transverse the Viking Triangle. We market the experience as ‘ From the Vikings to the Victorians – A thousand years of History in a Thousand Paces’ . The visit includes Reginald’ s Tower first mentioned in 1088, Greyfriars Medieval Franciscan friary 1240, Choristers’ Hall 1274, the Mayor’ s Wine Vault 1448, the Bishop’ s Palace 1741 and if there is not a church service in progress then Christ Church Cathedral 1773 is also included. It’ s a fun engaging tour with numerous photo opportunities. Now featuring a visit to the Mayor’s Exhibition – “Eight centuries of Civic Government”.
king of the Vikings 3d Virtual Reality tour
A dynamic Virtual Reality 3D experience, bringing you up close and personal with the Viking warlords who founded Waterford Ireland’s oldest city! Housed in a replica Viking house within the atmospheric ruins of a medieval friary in the heart of the Viking city, re-enactor guides set the scene before you are transferred back in time via state of the art Oculus Rift headset technology. Next to a world record breaking Viking Sword and just around the corner from a full size Viking longship, and Reginald’s Tower where the Treasures of Viking Waterford are housed.
Irish Museum of Time
Ireland’s National Horological Museum features the oldest Irish-made grandfather clocks, table clocks and watches in the world and celebrates the incredible skills of the virtuoso craftsmen who, since the seventeenth century, created timepieces of remarkable beauty and technological genius. The collection is not limited to Ireland, also on display are early European timepieces, some dating back to the mid-sixteenth century along with a display of clocks and watches from Switzerland, England, Germany, France, Italy, Austria, the Netherlands, Russia and as far away as Japan. Visitors can now avail of the ‘Freedom of Waterford- Five Attractions within the Viking Triangle’ ticket! This great value ticket enables each visitor to take a deep dive into their favourite era of Ireland’s heritage complete with access to the Medieval Museum, Bishop’s Palace, and the brand new Irish Museum of Time and the Irish Silver Museum as well as the Epic Walking Tour of the Viking Triangle.
house of waterford crystal
The Mall, Waterford City. Tel: 051 317000 www.waterfordvisitorcentre.com – Waterford Crystal is located on The Mall in the heart of Waterford City. The highlight of any visit, the Factory Tour gives you an up close and personal insight into the centuries – old tradition of Waterford Crystal making. You’ll feel the heat of the furnace and marvel at the skills of our craftsmen. After your Tour, indulge your passion for the world’s most famous crystal in our lavish Retail Store, home to the largest collection of Waterford Crystal in the world. Our exhibition of Sporting Trophies and Statement pieces is an absolute must – see attraction. For opening hours, please visit www.waterfordvisitorcentre.com
edmund rice heritage centre
Edmund Rice Heritage Centre – A Man of Inspiration
Edmund Rice began his educational mission among the poor of Waterford. His work was strongly supported by the people of the city. Though some of his friends thought he was mad to give up a successful business career. His work went beyond the boundries of Waterford, to other counties in Ireland and also internationally. Mount Sion, Barrack Street, Waterford Tel: 051 874 390 • Fax: 051 841 578 Email: email@example.com
Christ Church Cathedral, Tel: 051 858958
www.christchurchwaterford.com – Situated opposite the Bishop’s Palace Christchurch Cathedral built in 1773 by local architect John Roberts, It has been marked out as the finest 18th Century Cathedral in Ireland. Steeped in heritage and history including the famous marriage of Princess Aoife to English Lord Strongbow which changed the course of Irish history, it is a fascinating building to visit. Opening Hours April to October Mon – Sat 10am to 5pm November to March Mon – Fri 12noon to 3pm Admission is Free (donations are appreciated) Guided Tours Daily by request.
Waterford City walking tour
Waterford City Walking Tour -Tel: 051 873711. Contact: Jack Burtchaell – informed visitors in his twice daily, historic tours. The walking tour departs from the Waterford Discover Ireland Centre. His well-structured tour covers less than a mile of level ground, yet more than a millennium of this city’s remarkable history. Operates: from mid March to mid October daily, 11.45am and 1.45pm. Charge applies. Other times for groups (min 10 persons) by prior arrangement. After dinner tours for coach parties from your hotel. Admission applies.
attractions in county waterford
Waterford is a stunning maritime county steeped in rich, ancient history, with long golden beaches and magnificent mountain scenery. With the region’s capital city at its heart, the attractions of the “Crystal County” are as captivating and unique as the hand-cut glass for which Waterford is famous the world over. Waterford’s picturesque coastline, stretching the length of the county, is dotted with a string of lively towns including Tramore and Dungarvan, to name but a few, dotted along the route. Below is just a snapshot of what County Waterford has on offer a full list of where to go and what to do is available from the Discover Ireland Centre, 120 Parade Quay, Waterford City. Tel: +353 51 875823 : firstname.lastname@example.org
county waterford towns
Dungarvan is a thriving market town and medieval port. There’s lots to do in Dungarvan, from water sports and deep-sea fishing to fine dining and shopping.
With 5km of sandy beaches, TRAMORE is a popular seaside resort. A lively town, Tramore has something for all the family from amusements, surfing, sailing and kayaking to cliff walking, golfing.
Lafcadio Hearn Japanese Gardens, Tramore. Tel: 087-0960013POND ROAD, TRAMORE – The Lafcadio Hearn Japanese Gardens are set in the beautiful seaside town of Tramore, County Waterford. These stunning gardens reflect the life and extensive wanderings of writer Patrick Lafcadio Hearn (Koizumi Yakumo), who grew up in Ireland, and whose life journey embraced several parts of the world including Japan. Follow the story of the gardens, first through the Victorian garden, then to the American and Greek gardens, until you eventually arrive in the Japanese gardens which feature many Japanese plants and Japanese architectural features. The gardens are a haven of beauty and tranquility for all who visit. Children are introduced to these magical gardens through a special children’s discovery trail, secret pathways, woodlands and Lafcadio Hearn’s fairytales and folklore. The Lafcadio Hearn Japanese Gardens Tramore are part of Ireland’s Ancient East Touring Region. (OPEN ALL YEAR) every day. Visit our website for further information and to any changes in opening times. www.lafcadiohearngardens.com
DUNMORE EAST is a charming fishing port and seaside resort set into rugged coastline at the mouth of Waterford estuary. It’s an unspoiled getaway full of silent coves, clean beaches, fine restaurants and accommodation. Dunmore Harbour attracts many yachts and cruise ships, and serves as a busy fishing port.
To the west of the county lies the seaside village of ARDMORE. Originally a 5th century monastic settlement, founded by St Declan. Ardmore is famous for its 12th century Round Tower, one of the finest examples of this type of structure in Ireland. Walking, game fishing and horse riding are all on offer, and these, along with quality guesthouse accommodation, make this an ideal rural retreat.
CAPPOQUIN is a quiet market town in West Waterford at the head of the Blackwater River estuary. The area offers scenic walks and angling. The 18th century Cappoquin House and Gardens in the centre of the town are open to the public.
The Waterford Estuary provides a unique touring opportunity, taking in a number of pretty villages and clean, sandy beaches. The area has excellent accommodation, friendly pubs and good restaurants.
West of Waterford City lies The Copper Coast, one of the most scenic stretches of rugged coastline in Ireland. This fine stretch of coastline passes through the villages of FENOR, ANNESTOWN, BOATSTRAND, BUNMAHON and STRADBALLY; Bunmahon with DUNHILL just inland. The Copper Coast European Geopark offers an excellent guided trail of the area.
Inland is the quiet market town of KILMACTHOMAS, an ideal centre for setting out on walking tours of the Comeragh Mountains.
RING, or AN RINN in Irish, is a scenic Gaeltacht area south of Dungarvan where Irish (Gaeilge) is the first language of the people. Its people, beautiful scenery, seascape and above all its cultural vitality make Ring a unique place to visit.
THE SOUTH EAST COASTAL DRIVE offers stunning views of rock formation, coves and imposing headlands and, often in the distance, vibrantly coloured fishing boats. The route is well sign posted.
Mount Congreve Gardens, Kilmeaden, Co. Waterford. Telephone: 051 384115 – 70 acres of majestic gardens located just 10 minutes from Waterford City. Open year-round for visitors and guided tours, (tours need to book in advance). No dogs other than registered guide dogs allowed entry. Explore more at www.mountcongreve.com
Copper Coast Mini Farm
Copper Coast Mini Farm, Fenor, County Waterford. Tel: 051 396870. The mini farm features a pet farm, farm museum, sand pit, children’s play area, pedal go-cart track and coffee shop. Open:-Easter Holidays: 12noon-6pm. June, July August: Weekdays 10am-6pm, Weekends 12noon-6pm. April, May & September weekends only 12noon to 6pm. Easter egg hunt for all the family in the Spring and family events throughout the Summer. Groups and birthday parties are welcome by appointment.
Lake Tours Riding Centre
Lake Tours Riding Centre, Tramore, County Waterford. Mobile: 086 8128631 Tel/Fax: 051 381958. www.laketourstables.ie – Situated 2 miles from Tramore this family run stables offers polo cross, cross country courses and lessons. Beach rides for advanced riders. Scenic routes along the lakes and through forests. Open all year.
WATERFORD SUIR VALLEY RAILWAY
Waterford Suir Valley Railway, Kilmeadan. Tel 051 384058 www.wsvrailway.ie – The magic of rails golden age has been brought to life in Kilmeadan. Board the train at Kilmeadan Station, hear the whistle blow and take off on an exciting journey. Take in the panoramic views of the River Suir, get a glimpse in to Mount Congreve Gardens, make a wish in the Fairy Wood and journey on to Carriganore beside Waterford Greenway. The train journey lasts 40 minutes. Come prepared with a jacket if you want to sit in the open carriages. Closed sections also available. This is a fun experience for all ages.