County Kildare is a short enough drive from Dublin and boasts some great spots to visit and enjoy, whether for holidays or to check out if you’ve recently moved there. Just because Kildare is near Dublin, doesn’t mean you have to go to Dublin for entertainment, food, or scenery, so we thought we’d take a look at some of the fab things on your doorstep there.
Thanks to GirlCrew Kildare members Susanne Hayden, Leanne Clarke and Rebecca Mooney for the photos of the area and some GirlCrew get-togethers. And thanks to all the girls who shared photos and tips with us.
Out & About
The Curragh is about 5000 acres of grasslands apparently laid down as the last Ice Age finally loosened its grip on the land of Ireland. The melting glaciers flushed sand and gravel out over the Curragh creating the landscape we know there today. It’s associated horse racing with major events taking place there each year and many of the roads in the surrounding area are lined with horse studs. It’s a fab spot for running, walking, picnics, and of course, checking out some racing events. Other nice walking spots include a walk along the banks of the Liffey, as well as walking the canal from Carton House to Maynooth or a wander around Leixlip Castle (owned by the Guinnesses) or Castletown House in Celbridge. Castletown House also boasts a lovely coffee shop and guided tours of the house, exhibitions, recitals and in the summer months, a market. Spoiled for choice or what?
Spoiled for choice or what?
If the Curragh inspires you to want to horse about, there have been really regular trips out for horse riding at Abbeyfield farm with both GirlCrew Dublin and GirlCrew Kildare ladies getting in on the adventure. It was initially sparked by a few girls who had done this in their younger years and wanted to get back into it. It’s a great spot for it and they can cater to any level of experience.
Other great places to visit include the National Stud and the Japanese Gardens. And if shopping is your bag, it’s worth a wander around the Kildare Village Outlet or Naas town which has some great and unique little boutiques.
Eating & Drinking
For the perfect bit of luxury, treat yourself to brunch at The Straffan Tea Rooms in the Antiques and Design Centre. Food spots to check out in the area include Hokey Pokeys and Michael Murphy’s (Newbridge) and Tapas in Graces (Naas). And when it comes to bards and pubs in the girls recommend Hayden’s and One New Row (Naas) or Harrigans and Jude Row Beans (who also offer a great movie deal!) if you’re closer to Newbridge.
If you’re around Leixlip, try the Courtyard Hotel and Murphys of Leixlip. Celbridge peeps should check out Da Marios Italian, The Village Inn is a fab gastropub with good entertainment at weekend (including a competitive pub quiz on a Friday night!) and sushi/Japanese restaurant Hokkaido on the main street.
Making Friends in Kildare
Making friends as an adult can be hard, but I got all these tips and photos from the Kildare group within a day, so joining the GirlCrew Kildare group should definitely be your first stop! The group has been consistently wonderful and active and is one of the nicest ways to make the most of your area, whether you’re new to a town or have lived there forever. You’re bound to find someone who shares a few common interests or the same sense of humor 😉 The group is open to all women over 25, with no upper age limit. There are always new members joining so don’t feel worried about everyone already knowing each other. We’ve all been newbies once! Hit the link below to join the Kildare crew or check out our other city groups here. If you’re quick, you might even be on time to join them for the Curragh Derby this weekend!
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