Begin in beautiful Waterford City, a city steeped in the history of the Vikings. Often referred to as Ireland’s oldest city, Waterford was founded by Norse invaders in 914AD. You can discover the city’s past within the trio of Waterford Treasures located inside the Viking Triangle, including the Medieval Museum, Reginald’s Tower and Bishop’s Palace. If you’re getting peckish, it may be time for a "blaa" or two: part of Waterford’s history, it's thought they were introduced by the Huguenots in the 17th century. Enjoy one at the Bodega Restaurant and Wine Bar before setting off for your next destination.
Take the road north to New Ross, the country’s only inland port in Wexford. Don't linger there quite yet (you’ll be back!) — instead, take the road south to the coast and beautiful Hook Head and Lighthouse, one of Wexford's most evocative spots. This maritime landmark is over 800 years old; as the oldest intact operational lighthouse in the world, it offers knock-out views of the sea. Explore the visitor centre and take a guided tour to unlock all of its secrets.
Once you've captured your fill of coastal photos, take the road back to New Ross, stopping in the pretty medieval town of Fethard for afternoon tea and a stroll, before continuing on to the riverside hub of New Ross. Perched on the River Barrow, New Ross is a small but bustling place, anchored by the Dunbrody Famine Ship, a replica of an 1840s emigrant vessel. Step on board to uncover the truly emotional history of Ireland’s emigrant past through an interactive guided tour delivered by skilled performers and themed exhibitions. The last tour of the Dunbrody Famine Ship Experience starts at 5pm, leaving you with just the right amount of time to complete the 45-minute drive to Kilkenny City before the evening falls.
The city’s historic Medieval Mile awaits, where you’ll discover Kilkenny is named after St Canice (Cill Chainnigh means "Canice’s church" in English) who founded a 6th century monastic settlement. Climb to the 100ft, 9th century Round Tower beside the cathedral to enjoy the most wonderful views over the city and walk the Mile to absorb everything from Kilkenny Castle to tales of witch trials that still reverberate through the ancient streets. As evening falls, the cosy pubs and great restaurants ensconced within the medieval cobblestoned lanes will give you plenty of dining options. Before bedding down in a well-appointed guesthouse or B&B, pull up a chair at one of the city’s legendary traditional Irish music sessions. As well as historic attractions, a vibrant food scene and quaint pubs, Kilkenny City has some great live music venues to tour on your night out, so make the most of it.