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Waterford is a city in the south-east of Ireland. Indeed, it has often been dubbed the gateway to the south-east, such is the access it offers to the glory of the surrounding countryside. The city centre itself is a pleasing mix of ancient and modern. The ancient consists of the architecture left behind by the Vikings, who established Waterford in 853.
The date of the Vikings’ arrival marks Waterford out as the oldest city in Ireland, a fact encapsulated in the medieval beauty of the streets and architecture to be found in the ancient Viking Triangle section of the town. The modern appeal of Waterford lies in the fact that it presents a truly 21st century destination. Whether this means strong transport links, booming nightlife, a bohemian cultural scene or access to a raft of adrenalin-pumping adventure sports facilities will depend upon what you’re looking for, but Waterford can offer them all, and much more.
It can also offer the accommodation needed to take advantage of Waterford old and new, whether this means a hotel to crash in after a day spent mountain biking, a country house hotel with its own spa and access to a golf course, or a five star luxury cliff-top retreat to warm up in after a day spent exploring the waters of the Irish Sea or the Atlantic Ocean.
The type and location of the Waterford hotel you wish to stay in depends, to a large degree, upon the sport or activity you want to try your hand at. If golf is what you had in mind, there are clubs and courses dotted all around Waterford, offering a golfing challenge to meet every visitor, no matter what your handicap is. Some of the courses, such as Faithlegg, have their own hotels attached while others, such as Dunmore, Lismore and Tramore, are located in the surrounding countryside, taking advantage of either lush landscaping or windswept coastal fairways. Stay in a hotel in central Waterford or the surrounding areas and you’ll be within easy travelling distance of any number of courses.
The stunningly rugged south-east coast of Ireland is less than an hour’s drive from the centre of Waterford, and there are hotels located even closer, representing the ideal accommodation if you want to try your hand at battling with the aquatic elements.
From Sea Paddling, based in Fenor, you can arrange a guided sea kayaking tour, while there are surfing clubs dotted along the coast. These will usually provide equipment and instructions, as well as offering extras such as Nordic walking and land yachting.
At the Ardmore Adventures activity centre, close to the beach and within walking distance of the five star cliff-top hotel, you can choose between snorkelling, rock climbing, surfing and archery. If more sedate contact with the water is what you had in mind, there are numerous angling and sea fishing opportunities in and around Waterford, from sea-fishing charters off the coast of Dungarvan to fly-fishing lessons at Clonanav.