1. Emo Court and Parklands
18-minutes’ drive from the hotel.
Visiting Laois with family? Take them to experience Emo Court and Parklands, open 365 days a year. First laid out in the 18th century, the beautiful estate is rich in history.
Once the largest estate in Ireland; the gardens feature woodland walks, a lake, and tea rooms. It’s the perfect outdoor adventure for families visiting Laois. The house at Emo Court remains closed for renovation works until 2022, but the parklands are open to enjoy.
2. Slieve Bloom Mountain Bike Trails
40-minutes’ drive from the hotel.
For families with older children, check out the Slieve Bloom Mountain Bike Track. There are two tracks to choose from, one easy/moderate and one more difficult. The gentler trail starts at Kinnity Village and the more difficult trail starts at Baunreagh Car Park. Bring your own bikes or rent them from Mid Ireland Adventures. Beginner lessons and guided mountain bike tours are also available. Not into mountain biking? There’s an array of different activities for your family to try out near the Slieve Bloom Mountains; including stand-up paddleboarding, archery, and kayaking!
3. Timahoe Round Tower
15-minutes’ drive from the hotel.
Bring the family on a historical adventure with a visit to Timahoe Round Tower. Built-in the 12th century, the majestic tower is almost 30m high. See the carved Romanesque doorway; making it the most elegant round tower in Ireland. The surrounding parklands are perfect for a family picnic when the weather is warm. It truly is a sight to be seen.
Whilst in Timahoe, why not check out Fossey Mountain Springs Ranch for some family horse riding fun. Check out their social media page for more details.
4. Heywood Gardens
20-minutes’ drive from the hotel.
No family trip to Laois is complete without a visit to Heywood Gardens. Set on a sweeping hillside, you’ll experience wonderful views of seven counties! Enjoy 50 acres of beautiful gardens, lakes, and woodland — admission free! Our favourite spot is the sunken garden, with an elongated pool and grand fountain in its centre. See the little turtle statues that adorn the pool. What a lovely haven to visit!
5. Irish National Stud & Japanese Gardens
30-minutes’ drive from the hotel
Why not visit one of Ireland’s greatest treasures? If your kids are animal lovers, then a trip to the Irish Horse Museum in the neighbouring county of Kildare, is sure to delight them. Home to some of Ireland’s most famous racehorses, the National Stud is not to be missed. Facilities include free car parking, a picnic area, a restaurant, and a gift shop. Stroll around the gorgeous Japanese Gardens and take a woodland walk while you’re there. Guests of Maldron Hotel Portlaoise can avail of a 20% discount on family tickets.
Maldron Hotel Portloaise
Looking for the perfect base for your family trip to Laois? Maldron Hotel Portlaoise is within short driving distance of Laois’ top attractions. When you’ve finished exploring, enjoy dinner in the Grain and Grill Restaurant or go for a dip in the pool. There’s even a games room in the hotel for kids big and small.