My Hometown: The best places in Wicklow

Blogger Kate Gunn shares her insider tips on the best sites, sounds and shopping in the garden county

  • Kate

  • Powerscourt House & Gardens

  • Victoria's Way

  • Glendalough

  • View of the Sugar Loaf and Little Loaf

When she’s not blogging about adventures with her kids over at Kate Takes 5 or counting down to a deadline for an article, freelance writer and blogger Kate can be found enjoying her home of Co Wicklow. Here’s her guide to the best things to see and do in the Garden County.

THE BEST PLACE IN CO WICKLOW…

To have a coffee & cake: The Happy Pear in Greystones. Guilt free cakes and bakes made from healthy produce that taste better than they have any right to. From raw chocolate tiffin to hidden vegetable cakes. Who knew courgettes could be so delicious?!

To go for a meal: Chakra in Greystones. You’d be hard pushed to find a better Indian restaurant in Ireland. With flavours so delicately balanced they might as well be dangling on a tightrope across your taste buds, and a menu that will keep you enthralled every time you return. An absolute delight.

To buy something special for someone else: A visit to Mount Usher Gardens gives you and your recipient something special. The gardens are one of my favourite places in the county – a romantic stroll of loveliness to get lost in. Buy a season ticket as a gift or pick something up in the beautifully styled garden centre.

To buy something special for yourself: Well it has to be Avoca. Stuffed full of items that promise to make your life perfect, or at least a lot more beautiful. And failing that – there’s always cake.

To have a cocktail: I’m not really a cocktail kind of girl – so I’ll take a pint of Guinness in Johnnie Fox’s instead. There’s something special about the place – just make sure you don’t get named designated driver…

To get back to nature: Stunning views of natural beauty every which way you turn. Weather you fancy a brisk stroll or a 3 day hike, The Wicklow Way will not disappoint.

To discover hidden gems: Victoria’s Way, Roundwood. Hard to describe but well worth a visit, Victoria’s Way is an Indian Sculpture park that has to be seen to be believed. A twenty foot finger pointing at the sky? Why not.

To feel like a local: The smaller, lesser known brother of the Big Sugar Loaf, the Little Sugar Loaf gives all the stunning views with less of the commitment. Great for little legs or tired ones. The entrance is an easily missed wooden sign on the side of a road, at the back of another road, down the road from that road over there.

To be a tourist: The glorious Powerscourt House & Gardens. Join the coachloads of Americans and revel in the beauty and grandeur.

To hear some tunes: It would have to be Dann’s Bar beside The Beach House in Greystones hosts regular trad nights. For something more thrilling it’s Dublin bound.

To be pampered: Brook Lodge & Wells Spa, Aughrim is an oasis of country loveliness. Gorgeous surroundings and everything you’d expect from a high class spa.

That little bit extra: That’s just the tip of the garden county. For amazing beaches visit Brittas and Silver Strand, and don’t forget the stunning coastal Cliff Walk. Once you visit you may never want to leave.

You can find Kate on Facebook and over a Kate Takes 5.