We wandered from the walled garden into the woodland garden, crossing the quiet public road, towards the lake. The bamboo walk, large leafed plants, spots of colour provided by the azaleas and rhododendrons and hundreds of shades of green provided by new life, sprouting from every tree and shrub, emerging for the summer.
Throughout the garden walks there are a variety of surprises for the kids to indulge in; the fairy garden, the Viking settlement, pirate ship, wishing well. Nature is for everyone and the birds and insects will keep you relaxed and amused as you rest on the strategically placed benches along the walkways. Ciarán does a walking tour through the gardens about once a month and is worth doing this if just to feel a bit of his enthusiasm for this garden and his love of nature.
An interesting cemetery lies near the road crossing and dates back to 8th Century when it was part of the Monastic settlement. Artifacts of particular interest are the smallest High Cross in Ireland stands at 56cm high. The two “bullaun” stones, dating back to the Bronze Age consisting of large rectangular blocks of weathered limestone with a deep bowl-shaped depression hollowed out of its upper side. And unusual head stone with a skull and cross bones carved on it. On the back it has an inscription and the year 1739. There is a history of pirates attacking vessels on the River Barrow in this area.