Kylemore Abbey

Kylemore Abbey and Victorian Walled Garden are located in the heart of Connemara and offer spectaculars views of the wild landscape as well as the opulent building and grounds. Kylemore Castle was built in the late 1800’s by Mitchell Henry MP, an Irish advocate and landlord. He wanted to create an idyllic estate in the middle of Connemara with all the comforts of modern design. The building is now occupied and run by the Benedictine community.

There’s loads to see and do for all the family:

  • Abbey tour – see the restored rooms
  • Victorian Walled Garden walk – explore the six acre estate
  • Woodland walks
  • Children’s nature trails
  • Gothic Church
  • Mausoleum
  • History talks
  • Guided hikes

If you’re feeling a little peckish after your scenic walk, there’s plenty to choose from to sate your appetite. Kylemore Abbey has a strong tradition of delicious home cooking.

The Kylemore Abbey and Victorian Walled Garden is open all year round and is the perfect destination for a family outing. Just over an hour and a half drive from the Maldron Hotel Oranmore, it’s a great idea for a day out during your stay with us! To book your family break, just click here.

Connemara National Park

Located in west county Galway, Connemara National Park is 2,957 hectares of unspoiled natural scenery. The landscape varies between mountains, bogland, heaths and woodland making it an interesting and captivating setting for a scenic drive. The famous Twelve Bens mountain range provides a backdrop to the landscape and provide a wonderful place for hikes or mountain walks.

The wildlife of Connemara is very diverse with heather covering the bogland and purple moor grass which adds vibrant colour to the region. There is an abundance of birdlife in the area too with songbirds and birds of prey seen in the area frequently. The Connemara pony is the most famous animal in the park with a herd of purebred ponies offering the perfect photo opportunity during your visit.

The visitor centre is open daily from 9.00am to 5.30pm and guided nature walks are offered throughout the year.

Aran Islands

Named one of National Geographic’s Top 100 island destinations, the Aran islands are an amazing place to visit while on your Wild Atlantic Way adventure. Located at the mouth of Galway Bay, the three islands, Inis Meáin, Inis Oirr and Inis Mór, are home to nearly 1200 people and are one of the last regions where the native Irish language is used every day. Stepping on to the islands is like stepping back in time. The rugged karst landscape, punctuated only with the idiosyncratic stone walls of the west of Ireland, offer breath taking views of untouched scenery. Arguably the best way to see islands are by cycling, you can see information on hiring bikes on the islands here.

The islands are host to some of Ireland’s most unspoiled beaches with white sands and stunning cliff faces. The Red Bull Cliff Diving World Series took place in Inis Mór in 2014 and 2017 at Poll na Péist, a testament to the spectacular natural scenery there. Rock climbing is another great way to experience the island’s amazing views.
Several ancient Bronze and Iron Age forts are some of the most popular attractions on the islands such as Dún Aengus and the Black Fort. Some of the first Christian buildings are still preserved on the islands giving amazing insight into the historical importance of the islands.

They are also becoming a popular destination for stags and hen parties as well as corporate getaways and group excursions. The nightlife is second to none with an array of traditional Irish pubs offering the best of Irish music and craic.
The islands can be reached via ferry every day, for listings, click here.

Burren Nature Sanctuary

The Burren Nature Sanctuary is a great place to visit for an interesting and engaging family day out. Located less than a half hours’ drive away from the hotel in Cloonasee, Kinvara, the sanctuary is a popular destination for families looking for a day out with a difference. They run a number of different events to teach young children about the unique landscape of the Burren.

  • Botany walks
  • Fairy woodland walks
  • Guided nature walks
  • Walk with Emilia the micro pig
  • Walk with Frisky the goat

The Sanctuary Café is a major attraction there also, a member of the award winning Burren Food Trail. The menu features all locally produced foods in delicious combinations. They cater for all dietary requirements and younger palates also with a healthy children’s menu available.

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