NEW FOR 2017 A Guided Tour of Ireland's Hidden Gems with Irish expert Susan Byron 

Caher Bridge Garden, Clare

I love the idea of gardening having long since given up doing my own and cultivating friends like Carl Wright, who already have beautiful gardens instead. It’s not that I am lazy it’s just that gardening on the West Coast of Ireland, never mind the Burren where there isn’t a spare inch of top soil, is a real challenge. Trees grow horizontally if at all in County Clare, such is the exposure to constant Westerly winds unless there is sufficient shelter and who really wants to barricade themselves behind a high wall or a hedge. Genius gardener Carl has managed to transform his little acre surrounding his delightful stone cottage that he restored himself into a little warren of individual garden rooms that kind of shelter themselves.

Caher Bridge Garden, Fanore, County Clare

I love the idea of gardening having long since given up doing my own and cultivating friends like Carl Wright who already have beautiful gardens instead. It’s not that I am lazy it’s just that gardening on the West Coast of Ireland, never mind the Burren where there isn’t a spare inch of top soil, is a real challenge. Trees grow horizontally if at all in County Clare, such is the exposure to constant Westerly winds unless there is sufficient shelter and who really wants to barricade themselves behind a high wall or a hedge. Genius gardener Carl has managed to transform his little acre surrounding his delightful stone cottage that he restored himself into a little warren of individual garden rooms that kind of shelter themselves.

Carl Wright 00353 86 0802748

10 Hidden Gems near Caher Bridge Garden 

1  Take a trip down to the beach at Fanore named after the Irish Fainne an Óir (ring of gold) it really is and a great surfing beach.

2  Or hang a right and explore deeper into the Caher Valley, keep an eye out for erratics, remnants of the last ice age, perched high on the side of the mountains. They look as if some giant just flung a bunch of stone marbles into the valley.

3 Stop off at O’Donohue’s Pub for something to eat, they do great seafood chowder, grabs claws, seafood platters, fish and chips and everything comes with freshly made brown bread. Oh and did I mention you can eat outside with a view of the Aran Islands?

4 Drive on into Doolin, you will see some fantastic scenery on the way.

5 Stop into Doolin Cave to see the longest stalactite in Europe, this is real Indiana Jone’s stuff you get to wear hard hats with torches attached, yea....

6 Take a ferry out to one of the three Aran Islands, plenty of options there. Inish Mór is the most popular with its cliffside stonefort but Inis Oír the smallest and nearest is every bit as nice as is Inis Meain, the middle island.

7 Or if you don’t fancy that take a scenic cruise along the bottom of the Cliffs of Moher for an alternative view.

8 Or better again do the guided cliff walk with Pat Sweeney from Gus O’Connors Pub to the Cliffs of Moher centre, about 3 hours it costs €5 and you get the bus back.

9 The Cliffs of Moher is Ireland’s busiest visitor attraction with over a million visitors a year. Best at sunset when the crowds have all gone although there is a good interpretive centre which is open during the day.

10 St Brigid’s Holy Well about a mile down from the Cliffs of Moher on the right hand side heading towards Liscannor. St Brigid is the second patron saint of Ireland after St Patrick and her feast day is on the 1st of February. 

For more information about Caher Bridge Garden please click here.

Irelands Hidden Gems