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5 Underrated Weekend Getaway Spots You NEED To Visit

By RebeccaL

September 6, 2017 at 9:51am

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Ireland's a small country, but we constantly make the mistake of thinking we've seen all it has to offer. Sure, you've walked along the Cliffs of Moher and eaten ice-cream in Salthill- but have you really taken full advantage of what our little isle has going on? 

So discard your routine, pack up the car and escape this weekend to one of Ireland's many under-rated getaway destinations. 

It surely beats Netflix and a takeaway on a Saturday night? 


1. See Wicklow's Indian Sculptures

When people think of Wicklow, they rarely look beyond the beauty of Glendalough or the serenity of Blessington Lake. But, the Garden County is host to a number of hidden gems, most notably a park filled with intricate Indian sculptures. 

Take a stroll around Victor's Way Sculpture Park, located at the heart of the county, and appreciate the side of Wicklow you haven't seen all over Instagram. 

It's just a short drive from Dublin, but far enough away to feel like a holiday.  


2. Make butter in Cork

Cork, with its friendly people and fun nightlife, is a guaranteed crowd-pleaser. If you're looking for a quirky way to spend the day, stop by the Cork Butter Museum and find out exactly what you're spreading on your toast each morning. 

Alternatively, visit the The English Market in Cork's City Centre or take a stroll through Fitzgerald Park. 

The Rebel County has all the perks of city life (tourist attractions, nice cafés, good nightlife), without the chaotic atmosphere (running for buses, angry commuters). 

Some even say it's the true capital of Ireland, though that's still up for debate. 


3. Visit the Pyramid of Kinnity

It's not just bogland in good old Offaly. Take a spin down to the Kinnity Pyramid, near Birr, and pretend you're on an exotic Egyptian getaway. The pyramid serves as a large burial tomb for members of the wealthy Bernard family and is located close to Kinnity castle, which boasts sprawling grounds and a number of nature walks. 

Take full advantage of your trip (you did come an Offaly long way) by driving down to the nearby town of Tullamore. Here you can visit the Tullamore Dew Visitor Centre and learn about the history of one of Ireland's most famous whiskeys. You can also enjoy a lively pub scene or visit one of the town's many restaurants. 


4. Go camping in style

If you love the thought of a camping trip this weekend but hate the thought of assembling your own tent, Castleward in Co Down could be the place for you. 

Stay in a camping pod at Castleward caravan park, Strangford and enjoy all the beauty of the outdoors, without the bugs, rain or sleeping bags. 

The wooden pods are insulated with sheep's wool to keep you toasty at night, while the heavy roof is designed to minimise the sound of rain. Pods can hold two adults and a child and start at £35 (€38) per night. 


Camping

Image: Castleward caravan park

5. Visit the birthplace of Irish milk gin

If you're as gin-obsessed as the rest of us, a trip to Ballyvolane House in Co Cork could be a real treat. 

Co-owner Justin Green is one of the men behind the rising star that is Bertha's Revenge gin, which won big at the World Spirits Competitionearlier this year. The quirky gin is made on-site and was named after Ireland's oldest cow, Big Bertha. 

The house itself is luxurious and cosy. Featuring big wood fires, oversized comfy furniture and yummy traditional Irish fare, this place is a perfect spot to relax for the weekend. 

And don't forget to indulge in some of their speciality cocktails. 


READ NEXT: These Are Officially The 20 Most Beautiful Countries In The Entire World


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