County Laois which is a part of the Midlands region is growing in popularity with every passing year as tourists visit and then go back to write about their experiences, share their pictures and release their videos on YouTube giving others a firsthand experience as to what County Laois is all about.
Dublin is not very far from County Laois but there is a lot of difference between the two places. Dublin has a much more fast paced city life whereas Laois is more slow paced and lacks the buzz of the city. There are a number of historic and special places located throughout Laois and those looking for a lesson in Irish history or a piece of time that is still left untouched will be delighted by the architecture, sights and sounds of Laois.
County Laois has a number of beautiful gardens, architecture and nature trails that give tourists a wide range of activities that they can engage in.
The Rock of Dunamase
This is one of the most popular tourist attractions in County Laois and is located a few kilometres away from Portlaoise. The Rock of Dunamase is located on a low lying plain in Laois and has a rundown castle that was once plundered by the Vikings. It is very scenic and a great place to take pictures and capture memories.
Is steeped in history as it is believed to have been built back in the early 1700’s and designed by architect James Gandon. This historic villa was created based on the ancient architecture of Greece and Rome but had to go through a completely facelift in 1960. Emo Court is opened to the public for lessons in history and is run by the office of public works.
Emo Court Gardens
A quiet walk in the gardens is a great way to pass the time and take in the beauty of Ireland. The gardens are often used to host wedding ceremonies and it has a fairytale feel to it. It is located 30 kilometres away from the Roundwood Country House.
The first garden was believed to have been planted in the early 1700s and the second garden started in the early 1900s. The gardens cover a vast area of land and has a great landscape filled with beautiful Irish flowers and foliage. The garden has a peaceful feel to it and the only noise comes from the wide variety of birds that flock to this peaceful abode.
These gardens were originally designed by Sir Lutyens and attract hundreds of tourists every week. The gardens went through a makeover recently and the government decided to expand the gardens as well. A number of wedding ceremonies and photo shoots take place at the Ballintubbert gardens. It is better to visit the gardens during weekdays as it tends to be a lot more crowded during the weekend.
Fly Fishing & Game Shooting Museum
This museum is located in Portaloise and was started in 1986 by Walter Phelan and is a must stop for those who have a passion towards fishing and hunting. The museum has a great collection of Irish fishing and hunting monuments that go back well over 300 years and has a fantastic collection of rods, reels, specimen fish, guns and birds.
This bog is located close to the town of Abbeyleix is spread across 500 acres of bog, lag, meadows and wet carr woodlands. Tourists can get a great feel of the Irish moors by spending some time walking around the bog, checking out the birds and nature at its pristine best.
This small town is located in County Laois and has a very small population that is below 8,000 people. One of the most famous locations in Mountrath is the fabulous Mountrath golf course which was founded in 1929.
The club initially started out as a 9 hole golf course but had an updated to an 18 hold course back in 1994. It has some of the most well manicured greens in Dublin and has long freeways that golfers tend to love. If you have a passion for golf or would like to try it for the first time, then a visit to Mountrath is a must.
The Slieve Bloom Way
This is great for an adventure trek and the trail has both short and long routes. The longest route is a 70 kilometre walk on the mountain and the website clearly highlights the different trails and distances for hikers to plan their trips in advance.
The Lough Boora
Guests who want an outdoor and scenic adventure will do well to visit the Lough Boora, an interesting contemporary sculpture garden. It is located around 25 kilometres away from the Roundwood Country House.
The Birr Castle Garden
It is located around 30 kilometres away from the house and has a fantastic arboretum and science centre.