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On Ireland’s west coast, we have the Wild Atlantic Way – and in the eastern half of Ireland, get ready to explore Ireland’s Ancient East.

Taking in the eastern counties such as Tipperary, Waterford, Wexford, Kilkenny, Meath and more, this region is seeped in Ireland’s ancient history.

Waterford city is a place founded by Viking invaders from Scandinavia who liked it so much they decided to settle down there. The city – and by extension the county – still owes much of its history, layout, appearance and mentality to the Vikings who arrived in the Dark Ages and made it there home.

Ireland's Ancient East - Waterford, Viking

In the Viking Triangle, check out replica Viking longboats, longhouses and maybe even a few Vikings themselves!

In Tipperary, medieval religious history lives on in the various monasteries, friaries and convents sprinkled throughout the county and greater region, culminating in the massive and majestic Rock of Cashel. The mythological origin story of Cashel claims that the ‘Rock’ landed in Cashel from the mountain called Devil’s Bit when St. Patrick is said to have blasted the Devil himself from a cave. In any case, the Rock of Cashel is beautiful heap of medieval stones representing the ancient might of the Church.

Ireland's Ancient East - Rock of Cashel, Tipperary

The legendary Rock of Cashel sits atop the bare mountaintop

In Wicklow, snuggled amongst the beautiful mountains find the ancient site of Glendalough, an important monastic settlement and centre of learning, knowledge, and history. Combine hiking with history when visiting the region, as the best way to enjoy Glendalough is by hiking through the greater region.

Ireland's Ancient East - Glendalough and the Wicklow Mountains

Hiking through the Wicklow Mountains and hte celebrated monastic city of Glendalough

In Kilkenny, explore the medieval city to learn of the colourful history of this ancient city, visiting castles, round towers and more along the Medieval Mile.

Visit the natural side of the Ancient East by hiking in the popular yet breath-taking Wicklow Mountains before stepping off the beaten track to visit the Comeragh Mountains in the south. Meet a friendly colony of sea birds on the remote Saltee Islands off the coast of Wexford.

For more info on visiting Ireland’s Ancient East, check out our Self-Drive Ancient East trip through these under-rated counties!

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