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Lasting Impressions of Waterford

The lights of Waterford City‘s quays reflected in the broad and steady flowing River Suir at night; the ever changing play of sunlight and shadow across heather cloaked hills on a hike in the Comeragh Mountains; the sparkle of sunlight upon the blue waters off Tramore Bay, are just some of the lasting impressions that Waterford has left on me.

I spent a year as a student living in Waterford City. Being from the Atlantic seaboard county of Donegal, the skies seemed more often bluer and the summer, longer and warmer. You could call my experience, at a stretch, an Irish version of the novel ‘A Year in Provence‘!

Weekends were spent exploring the historic streets of Waterford City, and if the truth be told, many of it’s iconic pubs such as Katty Barry’s and Murphys. Waterford is Ireland’s oldest city, founded by Viking seafarers in 914. Reginald’s Tower is also Ireland’s oldest civic urban building and still a prominent landmark on the quays. It now forms part of Waterford City’s ‘Viking Triangle‘ and contains an impressive Museum of Treasures. Other attractions well worth visiting in this cultural quarter include The House of Waterford Crystal and Christ Church Cathedral.

The lively seaside resort of Tramore is only a 20 minute drive south of Waterford City and is popular with tourists and natives Waterfordians alike. There are amusements arcades, restaurants and pubs and a spacious sandy beach. A short walk to the west of Tramore, is a stretch of rocky coastline known as ‘The Guillamines.‘ This is a popular area for sea anglers and divers but my fond memories of it are joining scores of locals on a sunny summer day and plunging into its deep blue waters from sea rocks above.

Just west of Tramore, lies one of the most spectacular coastal stretches in Ireland, evocatively named ‚ The Copper Coast, due to the tradition of copper mining in the area. The coastal route passes through charming villages, with scenic viewing points along the way. I highly recommend hiring a bike in Tramore and cycling this coast road.

Last but not least, a scenic drive through the Comeragh Mountains is a sheer delight and I highly recommend a visit to Mahon Falls. Follow the N25 and watch for the signs to stop off at Leamybrien. The drive up the steep sided valley is nothing short of spectacular and includes a stretch called ‘The Magic Road‘. Stop at the fairy tree, situated a few yards from the road to your left, and turn off the engine. To your amazement you will find that the car will travel backwards up the hill!  Follow the 2km long footpath up to the viewing point, and you will be rewarded will breathtaking views of a series of waterfalls which cascade from the Comeragh Plateau high above.

Waterford is well known for its excellent choice of accommodation. Personally, I prefer to stay in B&Bs when visiting this ancient and lovingly preserved city.  The convenient locations of these homes make them the perfect choice for exploring Waterford City and countryside. The relaxed atmosphere and comfortable surroundings suit me down to the ground.

Visit Waterford and take home your own lasting impressions of this special county.

Book a B&B in WaterfordBook a B&B Now

Posted: 27 Feb 2013 by Mel Heron | with 0 comments

Tags: Waterford

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