Few countries have a tourist image so plagued by cliché as Ireland, but when you peel away the mask, you will discover a kaleidoscope of lakes, mountains, rugged coastlines, medieval castles and early Christian monasteries. It really does offer the opportunity to escape the modern day world and indulge in old fashioned customs and hospitality.
Dating back to 1228 Ashford Castle, the oldest castle in Ireland, is set amidst acres of beautiful gardens and forests on the northern shores of Lough Corrib, just north of Galway on the West Coast of Ireland. Once the country estate of the Guinness family, it fits everyone’s fantasy of a medieval fortress with soaring turrets, breath-taking views and even a resident ghost. It was transformed into a luxury hotel in 1939 and has recently undergone at €50m refurbishment. Exquisite guest rooms have delightful lake or river views, the great hall is lavishly decorated with rich panelling and fine period pieces and masterpiece paintings are scattered throughout.
There is so much to enjoy on a family break, with an abundance of activities to keep all ages entertained. Ashford Castle is a fantastic destination for those who seek a relaxing break with the kids. Enjoy incredible walks along the lakeshore or take part in any of the country sports on offer: fly-fishing, golf, horseback riding, and hawk flying overseen by Ireland’s first school of falconry – there is enough to keep even the most ambitious guests busy for a week.
Family Facilities: Large family suites, junior guests’ menu, board and card games, DVDs, LEGO, Butler (surcharge), babysitters, cots and bedding, children’s afternoon tea, treasure hunts, movie matinees and more.
Activities: Equestrian centre, falconry, golf, fishing, clay pigeon shooting, archery, tennis, lake and river fishing, 32 seat cinema, billiards room, cycling in the 350 acres of ancient woodland, kayaking, boat trips.
Each trip is tailor-made and many different sized groups can be accommodated, but as an example: Prices start from £3,520 (low season) per person based on two adults and two children flying by Phenom 100 from Luton to Ireland West Airport Knock and staying for 2 nights in a Deluxe Queen room. Airport transfers from Knock and Breakfast are included. Other aircraft and departure airports are available.