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Day trip to Waterford worth it?

I have three full days and one half day in Dublin in mid-September. I have been to there before, so I was only planning on spending one full day and the half day in Dublin itself. I am planning one day trip to Glendalogh, Powerscourt, and Bray. I don't know for sure what I want to do with the second day, but was thinking Waterford might be interesting. I know it's a bit farther than an average day trip, but I've done Galway as a day trip before and It looks like Waterford is a little closer than that. I don't know much about Waterford, but seeing the glass making would be pretty neat. Is it worth the time and effort to get down there?

Any suggestions of other good day trips from Dublin? We'll have seen lots of castles, cathedrals, and ruins in England, Scotland, and Dublin so I'm looking for something a little different. Much thanks for any suggestions; I'm feeling a little overwhelmed with planning at the moment!

Posted by
9363 posts

You might want to take a day trip to Newgrange, Knowth, and the Boyne River valley. Newgrange and Knowth are ancient burial tombs with wonderful examples of megalithic art carved into the stones.

As for Waterford, the factory tour is really impressive. You get a good look at the whole process and have an opportunity to speak with a master designer and ask questions.

Posted by
519 posts

My opinion re the Waterford Crystal Factory might be in the minority. But I've never let that stop me from giving my opinion before so why would it now?

Although I appreciate the history of the factory and the workers' incredible craftsmanship, attention to detail, and commitment to technical perfection, I hardly saw anything that I actually liked. And I tried really hard. It seems that their belief is that the more ostentacious the better. If you like really old-fashioned intricate over the top detail you will love this place.

They are branching out into more "clean" designs, probably to appeal to more modern tastes, but even so we walked away empty handed.

But again, you might fall in love with the place.

Have a great trip!

Posted by
9 posts


I agree with Nancy. Go north to the Boyne Valley. There are bus trips that depart out of Dublin City daily.

This website has some information to give you an idea about day trips (a place to start, anyway):

My husband and I have been to Ireland twice and are going again in May. We've been to Waterford and to the Boyne Valley area. The crystal factory tour is very interesting, but you can experience more of the history of Ireland from County Meath and West Meath, IMHO.

Your choice of seeing Powerscourt and Glendalough is excellent. You will really enjoy both!

Have a great trip!

Boise, ID

Posted by
196 posts

Even though I agree that Newgrange & Hill of Tara would be my choice I must say that Waterford is much more than the 'factory'.

Waterford is a beautiful town with alot of history. There is a fantastic walking tour w/guide that starts at the tourist office across from the quay, so if you do choose Waterford. Please just don't do the 'factory' and please expierence the CITY. :)

ps: check out these two sites: &

Posted by
95 posts

Hello Ayla, If you happen to be a fan of Ballykissangel, you may want to try Avoca. It's worth the effort if you're a fan, not so much if you're not. It's not all that far from Dublin.

Posted by
147 posts

The crystal tour is a c minus. we liked some of the shopping but then kept going to Dunmore East. Kilkenny is a nice day and night too

Posted by
12074 posts

I'd go with Newgrange, Boyne valley bus trip as a day trip if you haven't done it.

I've been to Waterford and it was pretty good. I think it depends on personal taste. If you are REALLY into crystal, it could be like a personal Mecca. If you are like me, you find crystal is okay and the tour is interesting but the prices at the factory are MORE expensive than what you would pay at home. I enjoyed seeing the tour but was put off by the prices (and that was before the dollar tanked).