House of Waterford Crystal

Top choice in County Waterford

This large modern complex combines a retail shop and cafe with a factory offering a 90-minute tour that shows how world-famous Waterford crystal is produced. The highlight is the blowing room where you can watch skilled artisans transform blobs of red-hot molten glass into delicate crystalware. The tour ends, inevitably, in the shop, where twinkling displays range from a €30 bottle coaster to a €30,000 crystal version of Cinderella's carriage.

The first Waterford glass factory was established at the western end of the riverside quays in 1783. Centuries later, after the boom of the 1980s and 1990s, the company fell on hard times and in 2009 was purchased by an American investment firm; in 2015 it was acquired by Finland's Fiskars Corporation. Today pieces are produced in Ireland and further afield in Europe to strict Waterford standards.