A detailed suggested tour of Kildare, with stops at Castletown House, Kildare Town, the National Stud, and the Japanese Gardens. Includes driving directions.
|Finish:||The Japanese Gardens, Co Kildare|
|Time:||Full Day Trip|
This trip will take you into County Kildare to a Castletown House, the Irish National Stud and the Japanese Gardens. For our first stop take the N4 to just past Lucan and from there take the R403 to Celbridge.
Castletown House: This magnificent stately home is rated as one of the finest examples of Palladian (classical) architecture in Ireland, and makes a trip to Celbridge worthwhile. It was built in 1722 with profits from land-grabbing after the 1691 Battle of the Boyne and has recently undergone extensive restoration. The house is well endowed with the trappings of a Georgian home and the extensive gardens feature clipped yew trees and a folly obelisk. Open 7 days. From here take the local road towards Naas and get onto the N7 and continue to Kildare town.
Kildare Town: This pleasant historic town, built around the medieval cathedral of St. Brigid. A perpetual fire was kept here until the dissolution of the monasteries in 1537. There is a round tower in the graveyard which is also open to the public. A good lunch may be had here.
The National Stud
The National Stud: Located three kilometres (2mi) outside Kildare in the village of Tully this is the nations premier horse stud farm. It consists of 2,000 hectares (5,000 acres) of arable land where some of the world’s finest horses are trained, is the National Stud, a testament to the perfectionism of racehorse-breeding. A museum of horseracing is the last resting place of Arkle, the legendary steeplechaser whose skeleton is on display. You don not have to be a racing fanatic to appreciate a visit here; the beautiful setting makes on its own the journey worthwhile. Next door to this are the Japanese Gardens.
The Japanese Gardens
Japanese Gardens: Laid out in 1906 these are one of the finest of their type in Europe and through the use of trees, shrubs, rocks and water it tells the story of man?s progress through life. A delightful retreat with coffee, souvenir and bonsai plant shops. Take the N7 to return to Dublin.