There are numerous hiking trails both on the estate and in close proximity is the Dublin Way and the Wicklow Way. There are also easy hikes to the nearby Hellfire Club.
There is a plethora of activities in close proximity including golf courses such as Padraig Harrington’s home course – Stackstown Golf Course; as well as Rathfarnham Golf Course, Castle Golf Course, Grange Golf Course and Edmondston Golf Course. Within easy reach is other championship courses such as Druids’ Glen, The European, Royal Dublin, Portmarnock, and The K Club.
The house has a special relationship with Rathfarnham Equestrian Centre, which provides trekking and whose horses grace the estate.
The following are all within 30 mins drive from Orlagh Country House:
Other Walking trails (beyond Orlagh)
Rathfarnham Village & Castle
Pearse Museum and St. Enda’s Park
Orlagh is ideally located in the foothills of the Dublin Mountains which opens up many hiking and trail options. Easy walks include a 40 minute loop on the Estate called “The Way”, and more testing hikes up to the Hellfire Club offer panoramic views of Dublin and beyond. In close proximity are much longer walks such as the Dublin Way and the world famous Wicklow Way which extends for 131 km from Marlay Park through the Dublin and Wicklow Mountains, ending in the village of Clonegal in Co. Wicklow. It is typically completed in 5-7 days.
There are walks to suit climbers of all abilities. Many of the walks are on National Forestry land and a great many have accessible carparks at the departure point. There is no need to drive for guests staying at Orlagh, as you can walk straight from the house into wilderness, without even crossing a road.
This is a picturesque village in close proximity to the Estate. It has a beautiful Church of Ireland church, with a very old, atmospheric graveyard where Bram Stokers mother is supposedly buried. Possibly the most historic building in the area is the imposing fort-like imposing grandeur of Rathfarnham Castle. The original building dates from Elizabethan times and was the home of the Archbishop Adam Loftus. The Yorkshireman was one of the principal founders of Trinity College Dublin. The house was remodelled in the late 18th century into what stands today with famous architects of the time such as Sir William Chambers and James “Athenian” Stuart.
The famous Yellow House pub and restaurant lies at the foot of the Village, opposite the popular Church of the Sacred Heart.
The Pearse Museum and St Enda’s Park was where Patrick Pearse lived and ran his innovative Irish-speaking school, Scoil Éanna, between 1910-16.
The House “The Hermitage” was originally built by Edward Hudson, State Dentist, who signed a lease on the lands in 1786. Over a century later, Patrick Pearse discovered the house while on a historical pilgrimage of sites associated with Robert Emmet including The Priory, Rathfarnham. Set in nearly fifty acres of beautiful parkland, the museum tells the story of Patrick Pearse and his brother William, both of whom were executed for their part in the 1916 Rising.
Pearse Museum and St. Enda’s Park are operated and managed by the Office of Public Works.
The Hellfire Club
Marlay Park & House
One of South Dublin’s best known landmarks is undoubtedly the Hell Fire Club on the summit of Mount Pelier.
Thomas Connolly, Speaker of the House of Commons, built the hunting lodge about the year 1720, utilising as materials stones from a large cairn which stood at the top of the hill. Shortly after it was built the slated roof was blown off one night in a violent storm. Local people believed that the roof had been blown off by the devil on account of the owner’s sacrilegious conduct in desecrating the old cairn.
The house as built had a parlour, drawing room and hall on the upper floor, each room having two large windows in front commanding a magnificent view. On the ground floor was the kitchen, off which were the servants’ quarters. The hall door was reached by a fine flight of stone steps, which were later taken away when the house fell into decay.
Legend tells of a black cat which was kept there as Satan’s representative. A young clergyman crossing the Dublin mountains at night sought refuge there during a snowstorm, believing the building to be no more than a farmhouse. Only after the door was opened by a cloaked figure brandishing a sword did he realise his dreadful mistake. On entering, he found the club members having a meal, the guest of honour being the black cat sitting at the head of the table. The clergyman, on being told the identity of the cat, endeavoured to exorcise it but the animal cried out in pain, jumped on to an overhead chandelier which fell, setting the building alight.
Ireland’s scariest destination.
Marlay Park is a 121 hectares (300 acres) suburban public park located in Rathfarnham in Dún Laoghaire–Rathdown, Ireland. Lying about nine kilometres (5.5 miles) from Dublin city centre, the parkland comprises woodlands, ponds and walks. Recreational spaces include a nine-hole, par-three golf course, tennis courts, six soccer pitches, five GAA pitches, a cricket pitch, two children’s playgrounds and a miniature railway run by the Dublin Society of Model and Experimental Engineers.There is also a craft courtyard with home craft shops and a coffee shop.
Dublin County Council acquired the land in 1972 and developed it as a regional park. Opened in 1975, it is now administered by Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council. Since 2000 Marlay Park has become a popular music venue with a capacity of 12,000, featuring both renowned national and international performers.
The history of the Estate can be traced back to the Anglo-Norman conquest and right through to Tudor Times when Henry VIII confiscated the lands then owned by St. Mary’s Abbey, during the suppression of the monasteries. Towards the end of the 17th century, Thomas Taylor acquired the property. He built a house on the Estate, which was called “The Grange”, and he began to farm the land. Both his son, Alderman Thomas and his grandson James Taylor, held key positions in political circles during the 1740’s, 50’s and 60’s.
Marlay Park and House
Glendalough. Literally translated from Gaelic, Gleann Dá Loch, means “Valley of two lakes”. It is an ancient glacial valley in County Wicklow renowned for an Early Medieval monastic settlement founded in the 6th century by St. Kevin. There are awe-inspiring ruins at the site along with a perfectly preserved Round Tower and places of worship. Glendalough is a short 30 minute drive from Orlagh with scenery which is every bit as beautiful as the Scottish Highlands. It can get very busy in the Summer months with coach loads of tourists. Best to get there either early or late in the day to sense some of the tranquility which drew the monks there over 1500 years ago.
For hikers, The Wicklow Way, passes through Glendalough on its way from Rathfarnham in the north to its southerly point of Clonegal in County Carlow. For rock climbers, Glendalough’s granite cliffs, situated on the hillside above the north-western end of the valley, have been a popular rock-climbing location since the first climbs were established in 1948.
The current guidebook lists about 110 routes, at all grades up to E5/6a, with several more climbs, mainly in the high grades. The climbs vary between one and four pitches, and up to over 100m in length. The quality of the climbing along with the variety of grades attracts climbers of all standards to Glendalough. Below the crag is an extensive boulder field. This is a popular location for bouldering activities, with an extensive boulder field within easy reach of the path.
Glendalough official website
Zipit Adventure Centre
Local Pubs & Restaurants
Looking for somewhere for big and small people to enjoy? Look no further.
This treetop fantasy land cover 1.8 km of treetop activities. There are five circuits for different ages, height and abilities with over 655m of ziplines, the longest of which is 135m!
You have a maximum of four hours, which is long enough to complete 3 circuits!
There are over 91 activities between platforms in the trees!
Experienced instructors will help you choose between the different degrees of difficulty.
The site is less than 2 miles from Orlagh.
Whether an adrenaline junkie or just looking to try something different, Zipit offers an experience for everyone to enjoy.
For those companies with the adventurous staff, Zipit cater for corporate parties and can tailor events to suit.
The location is so easy to reach from Orlagh or anywhere in south Dublin.
Zipit Adventure Centre, Tibradden Wood.
All that Dublin City has to offer is on Orlagh’s doorstep, but how can we not highlight the home of the Black Stuff?
Less than 25 minutes away is a place of pilgrimage for beer drinkers from all around this wonderful wide world. The Guinness Storehouse is a must-see.
We truly recommend the VIP tour, where you get an intimate tour of the brewery, the history, the brewing process and the tall tales.
Pour yourself a velvety pint, let it whet your lips and you quickly realise the secret of Dublin’s reputation as one of the liveliest cities on the planet. Pure genius!
There is always the comment from tourists that the Guinness tastes better in Ireland. This is true, but not because it’s a different Guinness, it’s because here a barman traditionally did an apprenticeship of 7 years, and know what they are doing!!
All that Dublin has to offer is within easy reach, but some local hostelries are worthy of a world class reputation. Johnnie Fox’s Pub & Restaurant, possibly one of the most famous pubs in the country is within easy reach. Famed as the highest pub in Ireland, it is in Glencullen on top of the Dublin Mountains. Traditional Irish music is on offer every night and on Saturday and Sunday afternoons, as well as great food and craic.
Even closer is the The Merry Ploughboy Pub & Restaurant in Rockbrook, winner of the Best Dinner/Entertainment Event in Ireland in 2009, ’11, ’12, ’13, ’14 and ’16. It is the only pub owned and managed by traditional Irish musicians.
Last but not least is the The Blue Light Pub, also nestled in the Dublin Mountains, with outstanding views. This pub is an authentic drinking establishment loved by the locals. Live music on most days, it is the type of venue where Bono and some supermodels will rub shoulders with a local sheep farmer. Priceless.
Dundrum Town Centre shopping centre
Leopardstown Race Course
No excuses for anyone saying they are bored. Just 15 minutes away is Ireland’s best and largest shopping centre. It has over 140,000 square metres of floor space with some 170 shops and restaurants and parking for over 3,400 cars. The Centre is open 7 days a week and has a large range on offer, from Harvey Nichols, to Marks and Spencers, to Next, River Island, Dunnes Stores and a huge Tesco supermarket. Plenty of leisure pursuits, with a cinema, restaurants and international and artisan shopping. People love shopping and people watching at Dundrum. The centre won a Global development award when constructed and as a fantastic outdoor area with a fountain display modelled on the Bellagio in Las Vegas!
Dundrum Town Centre shopping centre
Orlagh is located in an area of Dublin surrounded by a multitude of high quality championship golf courses. Golfers can test themselves on a different course every day for a month, all of which are located within easy reach of Orlagh. Less than 10 minutes away are Rathfarnham Golf Club, The Grange Golf Club, Edmonstown Golf Club, Castle Golf Club, Milltown Golf Club and the home of three times major champion Padraig Harrington – Stackstown Golf Club. This Club has a room which can be viewed with prior arrangement which hosts the amazing trophies and memorabilia from this local legend’s career.
Slightly further away, but within 40 minutes, are courses of the quality of Killeen Castle Golf Club, K Club, Druid’s Glen Golf Club, The European, Royal Dublin, and Portmarnock.
The home of Irish racing in Dublin is only 5 km away at the next junction (13) of the M50. It holds both National Hunt and Flat racing. The course has been in existence since 1888 and racing takes place there all year round, with some 22 race meetings every year. The Leopardstown Hall of Fame honours famous Irish horse racing trainers, jockeys and horses like legends such as Vincent O’Brien, Tom Dreaper, Pat Taaffe and Pat Eddery, Arkle, Dawn Run, Levmoss and the majestic Nijinsky. A farmers’ market is held on Fridays and between June and August the “Bulmers Live at Leopardstown” music festival takes place. This has hosted some of the hippest bans around and is a fabulous way to spend a summers evening.
Leopardstown Race Course
Formerly known as Landsdowne Road. The Aviva is the popular home for both Rugby Union and Soccer in Ireland. The stadium is located in the leafy environment of Ballsbridge, one of the more expensive addresses in Dublin. This stadium has played host to some of the most memorable sporting occasions in the country – whether that be the annual Six Nations Ruby Union clashes, involving Home Nations England, Scotland Wales with France and Italy, Pro 14, Champions Cup or European and World Cup qualifying championships pitting Ireland against some of the best teams in the world. A pub crawl on a Six Nations match day really needs to be seen to be believed.
Joining in a rousing chorus of “Alive, Ah-live Oh, Alive Ah-Live Oh” is a sight to behold.
Aviva Stadium Dublin
The Royal Dublin Society is the name given in 1820 to a philanthropic organisation which was founded as the Dublin Society in 1731 to see Ireland thrive culturally and economically. The R.D.S. is synonymous with its sprawling campus in Ballsbridge which hosts “Leinster Rugby” as well as used regularly for exhibitions, concerts and other sporting events – especially the world-famous Royal Dublin Horse Show, which first took place in 1864. This show jumping event features world-class competitors and is very much one of the Blue Ribbon events on any well-respected individual’s Summer social calendar. The quality of the show jumping is not let down by the quality of the fashionistas and the flowing Guinness and Champagne being consumed.
The home of Gaelic Games in Ireland, this 82,300 capacity stadium is affectionately known by locals as “Croker”. It serves as the principle stadium and headquarters of the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA). Since 1884 the stadium has hosted Football, Hurling and Camogie. If you are lucky enough to be in Dublin when a match is on at Croker, don’t miss the opportunity.
The stadium has also played host to sold out rock concerts with a who’s who of acts from local favourites U2 to Tina Turner, Bon Jovi, Beyonce, and The Boss. However, biased as we are, watching an All Ireland Hurling Final, which perennial is usually Tipperary v. Killkenny is probably as close to sporting perfection as humans will ever come. Don’t believe us? Go see for yourself.
We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars
– Oscar Wilde