Welcome to County Waterford
Diverse County Waterford harbours: seaside resorts of all flavours along its sandy coastline; historic churches, cathedrals and castles; a warren of walking trails in the beautiful Nire Valley, concealed among the Comeragh and Monavullagh Mountains; and lively Waterford city, with its maze of medieval lanes and well-preserved Georgian architecture
Top experiences in County Waterford
Sights in County WaterfordSee all sights
County Waterford activities
House of Waterford Crystal Guided Factory Tour
At the House of Waterford Crystal, there is a manufacturing plant, and brand experience in Waterford, where we produce crystal and give visitors an opportunity to visit the factory and see how we make our beautiful products.On the tour, guests visit the mould room where they witness mould making – a technique that has remained unchanged throughout the centuries, as the Master Blowers shape the molten crystal flawlessly with the use of wooden moulds and hand tools. The next part of the tour is truly magical, as visitors enter the blowing department where they see glowing balls of crystal transformed into majestic shapes as they are put through the 1300-degree furnace. The Waterford Crystal pieces are then hand marked for precision and accuracy, and they are then cut, sculpted and engraved. While getting this behind the scenes sneak peak of this highly skilled method of crystal manufacturing, visitors also see the high standards that the House of Waterford Crystal has for each and every piece that leaves the factory. The crystal is inspected at each stage of production, so each piece no matter how small goes through six inspections, and if it fails to reach the Waterford Crystal standards at any stage it is smashed and returned to the furnace to be re-melted so that the piece can be started again. The tour is fully guided and takes approx 50 minutes to complete.On completion of the tour, visitors can experience over 12,000 sq ft of crystal heaven in the largest retail and showcase of Waterford Crystal in the world. The retail store represents everything that is made in crystal, including a showcase on golf and sport, which is a major part of the international business at the House of Waterford Crystal.The main feature in the retail store is a centre dining table, with twelve Waterford Crystal Chandeliers on display. The lifestyle displays communicate the various brand stories including the Jo Sampson Collection, John Rocha, Jeff Letham and the core Waterford Crystal patterns.The product range includes Waterford Crystal, House of Waterford Crystal, John Rocha, Jasper Conran, Jo Sampson, Archive Stemware, Marquis, Lighting, Holiday Heirlooms and the new Waterford Crystal Jewellery Collection.Waterford Crystal continues to provide some of the most prestigious trophies to the world’s great sporting events made at the facility, and some of these trophies are on display in the retail store.The Crystal café is open seven days a week, a daytime cafe, the Crystal Café is all about great food using nothing but the best locally sourced seasonal produce supporting as many Irish suppliers as possible along the way.The menu offers café-style dining, incorporating scrumptious salads, soups, wraps, ciabatta’s and other healthy options, with fresh baking daily.
Epic Tour of the Viking Triangle
This walking guided tour, the ‘Epic Tour of the Viking Triangle’, includes entry to six national monuments ranging in date from 1190AD to 1783, it is a wonderful way for visitors to get an overview of Irish history both the historic and archaeological treasures and also experience the developments in architecture over a period of a thousand years as visitors transverse the Viking Triangle. We market the experience as ‘From the Vikings to the Victorians - A thousand years of History in a Thousand Paces’. The visit includes Reginald’s Tower first mentioned in 1088, Greyfriars Medieval Franciscan friary 1240, Choristers’ Hall 1274, the Mayor’s Wine Vault 1448, the Bishop’s Palace 1741 and if there is not a church service in progress then Christ Church Cathedral 1773 is also included. It’s a fun engaging tour and includes many props to engage and entertain you with numerous photo opportunities along the way. This unique tour avoids having you, our guests, walk around in the rain, as most of the time you are indoors being regaled by our professionally trained tour guide, where else would you experience an overview of Irish history in an hour!
Medieval Museum and Bishop's Palace: Combined Admission Ticket
Waterford Medieval Museum houses the 13th century Choristers Hall in the heart of Waterford's Viking Triangle and is the only museum of its kind in Ireland. The Medieval Museum houses the 13th century Choristers Hall and the 15th century Mayor’s Wine Vault, in the heart of Waterford's Viking Triangle and is the only museum of its kind in Ireland and Europe that is built over two national monuments. This striking new building reveals the story of Waterford through the middle Ages and visitors are wowed as they go underneath the new building into centuries old vaults. On display are the magnificent Cloth of Gold vestments the only complete pre-reformation set to survive in Europe. It's the only complete set of medieval High Mass Vestments to survive in Northern Europe, the only piece of clothing to survive from King Henry VIII’s reign, the ‘Cap of Maintenance’, as well as the Great Charter Roll which was viewed by Queen Elizabeth II on her state visit to Ireland in 2011.The Bishop’s Palace Museum houses a display of Waterford treasures from 1700 to the 20th Century, and gives visitors a wonderful insight into the history of what was, up until the 1750s, Ireland’s second city. Waterford city boasts the finest collection of 18th Century architecture of any city in Ireland outside of Dublin. Its great legacy from this era includes elegant architecture, silverware and of course, fine glassmaking. This period of elegance began in Waterford in 1741 when the Anglo-German architect Richard Castles designed the wonderful Bishop’s Palace. Castles built the Palace with its front overlooking the town wall which he had reduced in height so that it formed part of the palace’s terraced garden. Today Richard Castles is celebrated as one of Ireland’s greatest architects having designed most of the great houses of Ireland including the seat of the Irish parliament, Leinster House in Dublin. The Bishop’s Palace Museum reveals the story of Waterford from 1700 to the 1970s. Amongst the many items of national and international significance displayed at the museum is the only surviving Bonaparte 'mourning cross', which was one of 12 produced upon Napoleon Bonaparte’s death in 1821. The museum also holds the Penrose decanter, the oldest surviving piece of Waterford Crystal, which dates back to 1789. The Bishop’s Palace offers a unique experience for visitors. The building contains a wealth of fascinating artefacts, period furniture, beautiful fireplaces and a collection of rare and important paintings. An entire floor of the building is dedicated to historic stories specific to Waterford such as Ballybricken’s pig markets, Waterford’s Home Rule story, the First World War in Waterford, the War of Independence in Waterford, childhood and household living in Waterford.
The Lismore Experience at the Lismore Heritage Centre
The Lismore audio visual experience takes you for a journey through the history of Lismore from 636 AD to present day. You will be seated theatre style with exhibition panels for further information. Guides available to help you enjoy your trip to Lismore. Characters such as Sir Walter Raleigh, Richard Boyle, Lord High Treasurer of Ireland, and the Dukes of Devonshire all have strong associations with the town and resided here at different periods through the centuries.This is a 30-minute presentation. There is also a museum and information panels for you to read in the Heritage Centre to give you all the information you will need for your trip to this beautiful Heritage Town.Robert Boyle, "The Father of Modern Chemistry", was born in Lismore and those wising to learn of his boyhood in Lismore and how his interest in nature and science came about can view an animated film and view information panels dedicated to his life.
Lafcadio Hearn Japanese Gardens Admission Ticket and Tour
The Lafcadio Hearn Japanese Gardens are a haven of beauty and tranquility for all who visit and also a part of Ireland’s Ancient East Touring Region. Children are introduced to these magical gardens through a special children’s discovery trail, secret pathways, woodlands and Lafcadio Hearn’s fairytales and folklore.You can begin a self-guided tour in the Victorian Garden, plaques in each garden provide you with the information for your tour. You will then go through the niwa mon - a traditional Japanese Entrance Gate and follow the story of the garden through the Transition Garden, the American Garden and the Greek Garden. You will then go under the Fuji-dana and into the Japanese Gardens, passing by the Tea Garden, the Stream Garden and onto the Woodlands. During this time you will be able to discover folklore and fairytales as translated by Lafcadio Hearn and your map will provide you with information on some of the many interesting features of the garden. This magical journey will then move on to the gardens of Peace and Harmony, the Garden of the Living God and onto Journey's End.Please note: You also have an option to choose a professional guided tour through the gardens, just choose the option when selecting your product. The guide will relate to you the story of the Gardens, point out interesting features and intrigue you with folklore and fairytales as translated by Lafcadio Hearn, an experience not to be missed.
Waterford Treasures Medieval Museum: Admission Ticket
The Medieval Museum houses the 13th century Choristers Hall and the 15th century Mayor’s Wine Vault, in the heart of Waterford's Viking Triangle and is the only museum of its kind in Ireland and Europe that is built over two national monuments. This striking new building reveals the story of Waterford through the middle Ages and visitors are wowed as they go underneath the new building into centuries old vaults. On display are the magnificent Cloth of Gold vestments the only complete pre-reformation set to survive in Europe. It's the only complete set of medieval High Mass Vestments to survive in Northern Europe, which were lost for hundreds of years after they were hidden from Cromwell’s army in the floor of the then Christ Church Cathedral, the only piece of clothing to survive from King Henry VIII’s reign, the ‘Cap of Maintenance’, as well as the Great Charter Roll which was viewed by Queen Elizabeth II on her visit to Ireland.Take the tour with our costumed re-enactor, or use our multimedia handheld guide in English, French or German or just wander at your lesiure throughout the museum.