Inside information & tips on what to see, do, eat, & special places to stay; Ireland, London & beyond!
Vibrant Ireland

All posts in Graiguenamanagh

Graiguenamanagh bridge, Ireland

Graiguenamanagh bridge, Ireland

You probably enjoy looking at captivating, funny, or beautiful photos, don’t you?

You probably also take them, and post on Instagram.

I know I do, and I’ve come across a group of people sharing their enticing travel photos from all around the world. Some are bloggers, others just Instagram users, but of a Thursday they share online some of their photographs. I’m going to join in. It’s called Instagram Travel Thursday.

This is the stone bridge from the 1700s that crosses the river Barrow, which separates the medieval village of Graiguenamanagh, Kilkenny, from Tinnahinch, Carlow across the river. On the weekend of 13-15 Sept 2013, the 2 come together to put on The Town of Books Festival & Michaelmas Fair.  It is a fun & book-filled weekend, do click the link to find out more.

Another stone bridge in county Kilkenny, this time crossing the river Nore, is in Bennettsbridge. I took this next photo while upstairs enjoying a chocolate brownie cupcake (gluten free!) in the little cafe of Nicholas Mosse Pottery, which is in a converted mill. If you like handmade pottery, this is a must-see. You can view the potters at work, and there is also an extensive Seconds section upstairs if you are a bargain hunter like me!

the river Nore from Nicholas Mosse pottery, Kilkenny, Ireland

The river Nore from Nicholas Mosse pottery

 

You may have experience for yourself, or heard the news that Ireland had a heatwave this summer. It was glorious! And in Graiguenamanagh, there are several river-swimming areas. Some are life-guarded in summer, & one has a high & low diving boards into the river. The area in the photo below was also sometimes used, but not lifeguarded.

The area in this next photo is just downstream from the bridge, & if it also hadn’t been a drought, & the river so low, you’d want to stay away for your own safety. But good swimmers went out & enjoyed this year– but as in wild swimming anywhere, you must ALWAYS have safety on your mind.

River Barrow jaccuzzi

River Barrow jaccuzzi

 

 

 

 

 

I hope you’ve enjoyed these river photos from County Kilkenny, Ireland. If you’d like to join in on Instagram, hashtag your travel (local travel in your area also counts) photos with #igtravelthursday. If you blog as well, go check out Simbaco Lifestyle’s post on how to take part.

Hopefully I’ll see YOUR photos as well next Thursday 🙂


Graiguenamanagh – A sparkling treasure waiting to be discovered

Evening along the river, Graiguenamanagh, Kilkenny, Ireland

Evening along the river, Graiguenamanagh, Kilkenny, Ireland

Dee Sewell of Greensideup.ie enjoyed a short break off the beaten track in the medieval village of Graiguenamanagh. She’s been kind enough to share her photos and unvarnished opinion. Do have a read: 

I’ve visited Graiguenamanagh on several occasions over the years given it’s not too far from home. The enchanting Town of Books Festival is held there every September and the place comes alive with book sellers and buyers ambling along the narrow pathways, clutching new and old books to their chests as they pop in and out of quirky old shops and marquees.

Graig’s a pretty riverside town, one of many dotted along the River Barrow in County Kilkenny, a waterway that runs through six Irish counties making it the second longest in Ireland. The deep channel that flows southwards along the end of the town, makes it perfect for high and spring board river diving on balmy summer evenings (lifeguard on duty at set times) and boats and barges of all shapes and sizes moor up along the tow path and weir, their occupants conveying the relaxed lifestyle they lead in their unhurried mannerisms.

Graiguenamanagh buildings collage

Some Graiguenamanagh buildings & the river Duiske running through town

I love the way places change the instant you ditch the car and travel by foot (or boat) and it happened once again the day we checked into The Waterside, a colourful B&B located on the riverfront in Graiguenamanagh (pronounced grey-g-na-man-ah).

We were hot and flustered having left our house and children in the capable hands of granny for the evening but we threw our bags into the clean and bright room of the converted mill and immediately headed out to explore our surroundings.

Our initial impressions of Graig were mixed… So many empty shops and closed up businesses poignantly highlighting the many casualties of a struggling country. We were especially saddened by the boarded up Anchor pub/restaurant/B&B, established in 1810 that would once have stood proudly at the bridge end of the High Street, but now empty with sycamore trees growing out of its guttering. How the building must have looked in all its glory! Now its a home for jackdaws and swallows and wildflowers that are nesting in its crumbling facade.

We continued our walk on the warm summers afternoon, looking for craft or bric a brac shops to entice us in, but sadly there were none, just more boarded up frontages. [Ed’s note: Duiske Glass is just a minute’s walk up High Street, but obviously needs good signage to it!] We wandered along, taking in the architecture of the old houses and the Duiske Abbey, then headed up the hill to the traditional Cushendale Woolen. Mill The mill still makes and stocks a colourful array of pure wools and yarns, including the newly launched Zwartbles range, but we were disappointed to find it was closed on Saturday afternoon and Sundays. That does mean however, that I’ll be returning again soon to buy a ball for my winter glove making project and perhaps stop for a cup of tea and cake at the Coffee On High Cafe,  but that didn’t help us part with any money on that particular Saturday.

Riverside; Graiguenamanagh, Kilkenny, Ireland

Riverside; Graiguenamanagh, Kilkenny, Ireland

In the absence of craft centres, we headed back to the river to look at the boats and found ourselves walking along the tow path towards St Mullins ‘Carlow side’. Within minutes the stresses of life left our shoulders. We slowed down and began to relax as the gently flowing river wove her magic.

We noticed the varied and colourful wildflowers that made us stop every few minutes to capture them, listened and watched the fish that splashed in their shoals alongside us. We felt the breeze as a large Heron majestically flapped its wings as it flew along the length of the river before flying high across the treetops. A fleeting highlight of our walk happened when the flash of a kingfisher whizzed past us, it’s vibrant blue catching the light of the sunshine before disappearing out of sight.

We didn’t walk to the next village on this occasion as we weren’t suitably prepared for the 2 hour round trip, but now we’re aware of these beautiful towpath walks we will return to do so. For keen walkers there’s a portage service that will carry your bags from one village to the next, allowing you to stroll unencumbered.

Food at the Waterside Guesthouse, Graiguenamanagh

Lots of locally sourced food at the Waterside Guesthouse, Graiguenamanagh

You’ll also find many well priced, clean and friendly B&Bs along the route, as we did in The Waterside which also provided us with a delicious three course locally sourced meal, with a menu that included Knockdrrina cheese, Goatsbridge trout and Lavistown sausages as well as a carefully chosen wine list and the nicest porridge I’ve ever tasted for breakfast!

Whether you’re just exploring a small portion of the South Leinster Way as we did, the full journey on foot, or the Waterways of Ireland, this is really what these villages are about – the alluring river. You can walk, cycle, row or canoe along any part of it, sleep in a tent or a b&b, stop for tea or a pint, soup or three course meal and sing with the friendly locals in a bar or quietly read a book shaded by a tree.

If only more people were to stop their cars and take a little stroll in the fresh air, perhaps some of the riverside villages might begin to regain their splendour. The boards may start to come down and they’ll no longer be hidden gems but sparkling treasures.

Thanks to Dee for this wonderful post, tis so true; these ‘hidden’ special villages like Graiguenamanagh are charming, but need people to come to them & spend a little if the villages are to survive, thrive, & then have new businesses.  

Here’s a little more about Dee, and check out her blog for things green & growing– in fact here’s her post on the wildflowers she found in Graiguenamanagh 🙂

 Dee Sewell runs an owner managed business that teaches growth, teaches green in Old Leighlin, Co Carlow. She blogs over at Greensideup.ie  about growing your own, recipe ideas, community gardening, the natural world and anything that might cause environmental concerns. She also loves all things purple. 


The Kilkenny Trail Festival  is a month long extravaganza of fun throughout the county.

The Kilkenny Trail Festival is a month long extravaganza of fun throughout the county.

 Walk, toddle, cycle, stroll, you can even hike or roll!

The Kilkenny Trails Festival is on throughout the 1st  to the 29th of September 2013.

There is something on the agenda for everyone; all ages and all fitness levels, as well as food lovers, history lovers, dog lovers, craft lovers, & of course nature lovers!

Although… in order to make the little rhyme I may have stretched the truth on one thing. You probably won’t really roll- unless it is on any wee waves on the canoe trip. Or, perhaps on the Heritage Train tour…hmm.. you know, I’ve not really stretched the truth at all 🙂

There is a massive amount on, and what I love about the Kilkenny Trails Festival is that the events are not just on in Kilkenny City. With activities on throughout the county, you get that extra incentive to go experience Kilkenny’s gorgeous countryside & charming villages.

As there are so many, I’m not even going to try to list all the events,but I do want to point out a few happening in our lovely area, Graiguenamanagh:

There will be a Moonlit Walk up Brandon Hill on Friday, 20 Sept, leaving the Boathouse 6.30pm. Free. You need to have a good level of fitness for this walk.

There is a Guided Cycle on the Barrow towpath Sat, 7 Sept, 11-noon. Adults & kids 9yrs up. Free.

A longer Guided Cycle from St. Mullins to Graiguenamanagh, Sat 21 Sept, 11am-1pm. Includes tea & scones at Waterside Guesthouse. Adults €15, Children (9+) €10

The Canadian Canoeing runs Sundays 8, 15, & 22 Sept at 10am & 2pm. Depending on river conditions they may either go on the river Nore, or  the river Barrow (which flows in Graiguenamanagh.) Adults €20 & kids from 4+€15. €59 Family

Love this Dog Walk event in aid of KSPCA at Kilkenny Trails Festival

Love this Dog Walk event in aid of KSPCA at Kilkenny Trails Festival

 

I’d like to share one more event which is also close to my heart– the Dog Walk in Aid of KSPCA. It is on in the Castlecomer Discovery Park (tip- the Jarrow Cafe there is very tasty if you are hungry after) on Sat 28 Sept. It runs from 10.30am to 1.30pm, with mini clinics for nail clipping, animal welfare & more. Free, but I imagine donations will be very welcome.

For details & booking of these & all the other events on at Kilkenny Trails Festival, go to http://www.kilkennywalkingfestival.ie/ 

Click here to see more on Graiguenamanagh

We have 4 wonderful rescued/adopted dogs. To see our littlest dog, Petal’s story, click here. If you ever are considering getting a pet, we hope you will consider adopting from your local shelter/pound/rescue. The animals will thank you 🙂

Enjoy the Kilkenny Trails Festival!

 


toto sniffs out some great books, including one with a picture of a cat, for The Town of Books festival

Toto ‘nose’ to follow the yellow book road to Graiguenamanagh Town Of Books festival

September in Ireland is usually gorgeous; mild, sunny, and perfect for festivals. If you love books, this is a festival you will want to attend– but you may need extra hands to bring home your book booty. Don’t say I didn’t warn you!

During the Town of Books Festival the medieval riverside town of Graiguenamanagh, Kilkenny will be filled with over 20 booksellers on the 14th – 15th September 2013! It’ll be the best place in Ireland to pick up a bargain in new, 2nd hand, antiquarian,children’s and specialist books.

On the 13th-15th, the Town Of Books Festival will feature many events: readings & workshops for all ages, theatre, music, & a host of a tempting food, crafts and interesting activities at the traditional Michaelmas fair. 

Graiguenamanagh is an outdoor activity headquarters for the Barrow Valley, and is constantly alive with hillwalkers, cyclists, canoeists, fishing and boating enthusiasts. Plus, there’s swimming & diving in summer. Come visit!

I should tell you that I do help out with this festival from time to time & but I don’t think I’m too biased. I loved & attended it several years it before I ever did anything with the festival. I’ve shelves full of quirky and fascinating vintage travel books to prove it! 🙂

 

YAY! All events are FREE unless noted otherwise 🙂

 

Friday, 13 September

**please note, booksellers will not be selling on this day**

 

Louise Philips, Award winning crime writer of bestseller 
Red Ribbons
Louise will read from her 2nd chilling book, A Doll’s House
Graiguenamanagh Library, 8pm

 

Bunny: 

Written by Shameless and Skins writer Jack Thorne.

A one-woman theatre show from Spark Productions (adult language/ themes)

Duiske Inn,  €8. Doors 7.30, start 8pm

 

Saturday, 14 September

Booksellers open 10am to 6pm

Library open from 10-1.30

Graiguenamanagh Community Garden open day: 

 Bring the kids and come see the garden, & perhaps chat with us about the plants! 10–5

 

Children’s Workshop on Imagination & Story

  Helena Duggan, graphic designer & children’s author

Bring colouring pencils if you have some. (Also provided.)

Ages 9+,  The Abbey Hall, 11am

Paint a Mural! 

Fun for all ages! At the basketball court, Abbey Hall 12-2pm

 

Paul Howard, AKA Ross O’Carroll-Kelly 
Paul Howard is an, author and comedy writer, and the creator of the cult character Ross O’Carroll-Kelly. He will read from his newest book Downturn Abbey
In Graiguenamanagh Library, 2pm

Children’s Book Reading & Workshop

Paula Leyden, award winning author of The Butterfly Heart, and The Sleeping Baobab Tree

For ages 9+, 2pm, The Abbey Hall

Writing Workshop for Older Children

Author Edward Crane gives writing tips, & talks about The Havishams, his children’s fantasy series. Ages 10+, The Abbey Hall, 4pm

 

Bunny:

Written by Shameless and Skins writer Jack Thorne.

A one-woman theatre show from Spark Productions (adult language/ themes)

Duiske Inn,  €8. Doors 7.30, start 8pm

 

There will be a fantastic festival atmosphere, with music throughout the streets during the day

 

Sunday 15 September

Booksellers open 10am to 6pm

Michaelmas Fair

The traditional Michaelmas fair of Tinnahinch & Graiguenamanagh has a long history. In a bye-gone era the area was a hub of activity when the fair came to town and rural & urban dwellers met and exchanged produce, services, cultural ideas and local stories. There will be farm animal displays, activities for children, music, history, a duck race, and more!  €5 entry

 

Artisan Food & Craft Market

Local producers and makers, including celebrity chef & author Edward Hayden, will tempt you with their wares at the Michaelmas Fair.

Local History Tour

A fascinating look at the rich history & stories of Graiguenamanagh and environs. A huge hit last year, don’t miss out! Given by the local History Society this tour starts at 2.30pm from medieval Duiske Abbey.

Bunny: 

  Written by Shameless and Skins writer Jack Thorne.

 A one-woman theatre show from Spark Productions (adult language/ themes)

Duiske Inn,  €8. Doors 7.30, start 8pm

Rowing a boat on a river of yellow books!

By land or by water, follow the yellow book road to Graiguenamanagh Town of Books festival

The Town of Books website is here: booktownireland.com

You can follow them on Twitter @townofbooksfest

And Like them on Facebook: Irelands Town Of Books Festival

Click here for more posts on Graiguenamanagh 

 

See you in Graiguenamanagh for the Town Of Books Festival, 13-15 September, 2013. You won’t need very much money, but you will need loads of bookshelf space!

 Here’s Graiguenamanagh on the map, below. 


View Larger Map


Active Family Vacation in Ireland: swimming & on the beach Dunmore East

Active Family Vacation in Ireland: Fun on the beach Dunmore East

Looking for ideas for an active family vacation in Ireland?

Kristi @TheMountainSun was, & asked me for suggestions. So, like I did for Leah over on this post about eating in Kilkenny City, I’m going to give you all a few ideas, thanks to Kristi’s question. She and her family are coming in Summer and want to go south & west. Here are some ideas for her, and you, here in the sunniest part of Ireland 🙂

Sunny Southeast of Ireland

The sunny southeast of Ireland is a wonderful place to be, especially in summer. The mountains and river valleys are not filled with big tour buses, but are filled with beauty & outdoor activities! There are loads of clean beaches, several of which are quite magical– coves surrounded by cliffs, caves and rock pools, uncrowded. Our favorite is the stretch of coastline from the 13th century ruins of Tintern Abbey, Co. Wexford all the way to through the Copper Coast in Co. Waterford. Along with swimming, rock pooling, & enjoying the riverside/seaside in general, in the sunny southeast of Ireland there are family adventure activities, horse riding, cycling, mini farms, kids’ power kite-ing, and The Magic Road. (There’s a map with the places I mention at the end of the post.)

Diving in Graiguenamanagh: Active Family Vacation in Ireland

Diving in Graiguenamanagh

Enjoy the Barrow River Valley

The Barrow river valley of counties Kilkenny and Carlow, nestled under the Blackstairs Mountains is a hidden gem.  There, all in the vicinity of the non-touristy medieval village of Graiguenamanagh Co. Kilkenny & Tinnahinch Co Carlow, families can rent bikes and, as I did in, take an easy cycle along the river tow path

Or also in the same area, what about a family river canoe trip or some kayaking? You can also take a guided nature walk (minimum 5 for this) or swim & dive off the diving board in the river. Whew!

You could also take a half day or longer trip on the most gorgeous barge in the world, Larry’s Barge. You can see it moored on the river near beautiful St Mullins, Co. Carlow’. And of course, you can just walk along the paths & trails in the area, too. If you are in the area for the Graiguenamanagh Traditional Regatta on the August Bank Holiday Sunday you may want to try your hand at tub racing, diving for plates, climbing the rope across the river, & more!

Head out to the Coast

Continuing on down by the Barrow, you’ll come to the town of New Ross, Co Wexford. There you can tour on the old emigrant ship, Dunbrody. Ok, it isn’t an adventure activity, but children often find it cool to be on an old Tall Ship &  they really do seem to enjoy this bit of  history, as the tour is done as a live re-enactment. From New Ross if you’d like to take in a beautiful ruin you can head to Tintern Abbey & roam that 800 year old ruin and walk the wooded trail to find another hidden ruin or two on site. From there you can go to Hook Head Peninsula & Hook Lighthouse. At the far west of County Wexford is the lovely seaside village of Duncannon. Here Hooked Kitesurfing offers a power kite lesson to children, and there is a big sandy beach that hosts a Kitesurfing Festival- 17 August  2013, & Sand Sculpting competition 12-14 August 2013.  Historic Duncannon Fort is also there, and may be of interest if there are military fans in the family. I’ve not been, nor know anyone who has, so I can’t comment. (On to-do list!) Duncannon is also where off The Hook Whale watching goes out from in winter. ( Have done & is FAB!)

Hook whalewatching trip

On our Hook whalewatching trip

Oh, Where’s This Go?

From Duncannon the quickest way over to county Waterford is by the little ferry that leaves from Arthurstown/Ballyhack. It goes every few minutes, & the first time we encountered it was by accident on one of our  ‘exploring’ drives. We asked where it was going, in case it was headed off to Wales, but it only goes 5 minutes across the bay over to Passage East 🙂 That’s another gorgeous little fishing village.

 Full of Fun

From there you can go to one of our absolute favorite seaside villages, Dunmore East. It is a great place for families. There on the main strand you can swim, high tide or low, and there are lifeguards.  There’s not a huge amount of beach left at high tide just at the jetty, but you can always get a drink at The Strand Inn just above the beach and watch the boats go by 🙂  There are more beaches in the area, too. Tip: the fish n chips, and the chicken n chips from O’Shea’s take-away (up the road inland from The Strand, 2 minutes walk) are very good. The village is rather large, and down by the fishing harbour is Dunmore East Adventure Centre, where all sorts of activities are available. My husband, who had been very nervous of the sea, did a day’s mini sail boat course with them and loved every minute.

sea stacks & sunshine Copper Coast, Waterford

Along the Copper Coast, Waterford

From Dunmore East, you may want to head farther west along Waterford’s unspoilt Copper Coast. The next town is Tramore, home to sandy beaches,  & with a busy family seaside holiday feel. Here is  Tramore Surf Shop & School, where in the Summer kids can have a surf lesson at either 10am or 2pm. There are also family lessons & more. If you need a break from getting wet,  in the Tramore area are Lake Tour Stables, where you can do a horse trek suitable for the family. You can go several times a day, all year, and is suitable for beginners & up. (There’s an all day Copper Coast trek, too–I’d love to do that!) The Copper Coast is full of magical wee beaches, and it is well worth taking a leisurely drive along it & investigating the strands & coves (and if the younger children need a visit to something  just for them, Copper Coast Mini Farm may fit the bill) before reaching Dungarvan Town & heading inland a bit to the The Magic Road (great fun!)

Helpful Apps & Sites

Knowing the high/low tide times is quite helpful, as some beaches (like Bannow Bay, a wild, pebbly stony beach good for birdwatching) will nearly disappear at high tide. If you have a smartphone, a tide app is useful. I have Tides Near Me – Free  (Android,) & there’s also a version for iphones.  A good website to visit is Irish Water Safety, it will also list beaches which have lifeguard cover. If you enjoy nature identification, there are free apps on Android for Irish Butterflies, plus bees, and mammals. Another good app is Ireland Green Travel, for Android and on itunes.  As well as outdoor activities, it has info on green places to stay and so on. It isn’t free, but is certainly worth the couple of euros. Specifically for families is Are We There Yet Ireland, very handy for just over €2!! Android  and itunes. Also, feel free use the search function to search my site, as I’ve  posts on other things to do, eat, etc, particularly in Kilkenny and Graiguenamanagh.

Here’s a map I made of the places mentioned, move it around to see ’em all. Click on the pins for more info on each.

View Sunny Southeast Active Holiday (family friendly) in a larger map  

Hope you’ve gotten some ideas you’d like to pursue. Have fun! 

 


                                                                                                                                                                         Contemplating a swim or a dive off the diving board?

Swimming In Graiguenamanagh

Swimming In Graiguenamanagh can also include Diving!

The lifeguards will be on in Graiguenamanagh on June weekends from 2-4.30pm & 5-7.30pm. In July & August they’ll be on 7 days a week. Swimming in Graiguenamanagh is great fun– just stay stafe within the boundary markers in the river. Enjoy!

Waterside Guesthouse on the riverside will also be open during weekend daytimes for tea/coffee, cakes & light lunch for when you work up an appetite. Truthfully, I’d advise you to save your book reading for then- reading with a cup of coffee is easier than reading whilst diving into the river. The things we do to promote the Town Of Books festival!! 🙂

 


http://bestfootphoto.wix.com/fiftyshadesofgraig
See all the festival signs? never a dull moment in our area!
This weekend -21 to 23 September 2012- the Town of Books Festival AND the Michealmas festival are both on here in Graiguenamanagh (Kilkenny side of the river Barrow) and Tinnahinch (Carlow side of the river Barrow.)
Have a look at this fantastic new photo site showing off the 50 Shades of Graig & more. Many thanks to Best Foot Photo for putting this together to show off some of the fantastic things in our patch of Kilkenny & Carlow.
http://bestfootphoto.wix.com/theyellowbookroad

If you are free tonight ( Tues 4 Sept) listen in online or on local Kilkenny/Carlow area radio to KCLR 96fm  between 8-9pm to hear me talk about Ireland’s Town Of Books Festival 🙂 I’ll be talking to Ken McGuire on The Arts Show about the 50 Shades Of Graig, the variety of books on offer, the fantastic events, & more. I’ll also be trying to say ‘Bridget In Werewolf Rehab.’ Will I be successful in that? Listen in to find out! 🙂
Bridget In Werewolf Rehab

Don’t Miss it!!           
Books, craic, history, music, & fun for the whole family on September 21-23, 2012 in the wonderful medieval riverside town of Graiguenamanagh, Kilkenny!
 One of Ireland’s hidden gems, the town is filled with booksellers from all over Ireland & the UK during the festival weekend. This year the theme is 50 Shades of Graig, & in addition to the readings/talks from (non-Graig) Irish authors, there are fabulous walks & tours where you’ll enjoy the nature and  history of Graiguenamanagh, music from Graig’s own Brass Band- the longest running in Ireland!- local food, plants, craft, & books from local authors. Go on, mark the dates in your calendar!
Get stuck in at Graiguenamanagh Town of Books Festival
Graiguenamanagh is the best place in Ireland to pick up a bargain in new and second hand books, antiquarian, childrens and specialist categories. The festival also features several readings for young and old alike, a smashing food and craft fair, music, street entertainment a host of interesting activities. Graig is the outdoor activity headquarters for southeast Ireland, and is constantly alive with hillwalkers, cyclists, & canoeists,  as well as fishing and boating enthusiasts.
So come on down to the river and take your time to browse the bookshops, walk the Barrow towpath and pop in for afternoon tea or enjoy a wee drink in a local hostelry. Here’s the 2012 schedule:
Friday 21st September
 
Booksellers open 2-6pm
Bridget in Werewolf Rehab: Author Maura Byrne reading & Workshop for 9-12 year olds – Graiguenamanagh LIBRARY 3pm €3
Louise Philips: Crime writer, A reading from her book ‘Red Ribbons’
All welcome –hosted by Graigue Bookclub at Graigue Library 7pm
Saturday 22nd September
 
Booksellers open 10am to 6pm
Graiguenamanagh Community Garden open day: with willow weaving display & plant sales, 10 –5
A Walk through Silaire Wood: Graiguenamanagh. Meet at the boathouse 10.30am. €3
‘The Backwards Speller’ – Children’s author and backward speller extraordinaire David Donohue, reading and workshop for 7-13 years old at Graiguenamanagh Playgroup 11.30am €3
Graiguenamanagh Brass Band: on the streets of Graigue 11am
Funky Kids Art & Craft workshop and Funky Disco: for 7 to 12 years 2.30pm at Graiguenamanagh Playgroup €3
National Chamber Choir of Ireland in Concert Duiske Abbey: conducted by David Hill and singing sacred music connected with the Autumn Equinox 3pm €15.00(€12.00 concession)
Sunday 23rd September
 
Booksellers open 10am to 6pm
Artisan Food & Craft fair: Upper Main St. 11am to 5pm
Graiguenamanagh Brass Band: 12 to 1pm Upper main St.
Street Entertainment: with Cory O’Brollochain followed by 
Juggling workshop for kids: (workshop €3) 2pm
The 800 year walk: Through the ages since establishment of Duiske Abbey in 1204. Includes fascinating visit to the historic, working, Cushendale Woollen Mills with guidance from current owner of the mill. Walk guided by Graiguenamanagh Historical Society, meet at Duiske Abbey 3pm
Jazz by the river: 3pm at the boathouse with FourSquare Jazz
The Festival Monkey – Mark Graham: creator of the popular Blog ‘A Year of Festivals In Ireland’ gives his version of the fun, culture, & plain old bizzare events he’s experienced this year.
Murrays Pub 4.30pmI’m certainly going to be there! Hope to see you!!
whattoseeinireland

 Go down to the riverside in late spring and early summer, and the wildflowers will be everywhere.
A walk along the river Barrow in Graiguenamanagh, Kilkenny, Ireland was an adventure in simple beauty as I took these photos. Enjoy!

Wild Flag Iris
A water snail was also on walk a by the river Barrow
Hogweed about to burst into flower
Clover, so good for the beees
Queen Anne’s Lace
Wild Mallow

There are plenty of birds singing in the trees, as well, but not easy to photo with a phone! There are sand martins nesting in a sandy bank, swallows swooping and chattering, and if your are lucky you can also see the Kingfisher dipping in the river for little minnows.
And of course ducks and swans float along on the water, dibbing & dabbing contentedly. The otters can be seen at times, especially the friendly younger fellow who has greeted me a few times along the bank in Silaire Wood.  Do you have a favorite Irish walk? Let us know in the comments, or tweet us at @vibrantireland


Enjoy getting outsideinIreland!
Foxglove in the meadow