The culture club: 6 things to do in the Irish countryside

The author takes a pause in the Glendalough Valley, County Wicklow, Ireland

Annie Evans here, director of the Society’s Miami chapter and special correspondent for today’s Culture Club post. After a jam packed spring calendar of cultural encounters, I was ready for some R & R and the hills of County Wicklow in Ireland seemed like the perfect place to indulge.  Below are my top 6 must-sees on the trip:

Sleep: Wicklow Way Lodge ( Nestled in the hills of County Wicklow, this charming B & B, built on a family farm, didn’t disappoint. Book a room with a balcony and prepare for stunning views of the garden of Ireland and a deeeelish traditional Irish breakfast (minus the black pudding–we weren’t fans).

Eat: The Roundwood Inn (+353 12 81-8489) This cozy pub at the bottom of the hill is where the locals hang after a long work day and enjoy a pint of Guinness. Be sure to order the Irish Stew!

Drink: Learn to pull your own pint with a little coaching from an expert bartender at The Coach House (

Dance: We heard there was traditional Irish dancing down the way from The Couch House, so we headed to Kavanagh’s Pub (+353 12 81 8105)–supposedly the highest pub in Ireland. We had just ordered two pints when we were summoned to fill in for an 80-year-old couple who needed to catch a breather and found ourselves arm in arm with the locals swinging each other round ’n’ round like we owned the joint!

Get outside: We took Wicklow Way proprietor Marilyn’s advice and took a morning drive around the lake in our rented convertible. At every turn, we were rendered speechless by the beautiful scenery. We stopped along the way and hiked a trail in the Glendalough Valley in the Wicklow Mountains National Park (

Get cultured: After our hike, we worked up an appetite and headed for lunch on the terrace of The Wicklow Heather ( where we had the most delicious meal and ended up stumbling across the Writer’s Room and Irish Bar, which houses collections of both Irish whiskey and Irish literature. Oscar Wilde fans will want to check out the cabinet of first editions, and they and everyone else will want to check out what is certainly the best stocked whiskey bar in all of Wicklow!

Ashleigh Dempster and Amanda Blakley are the co-founders of The Society Global, a social club with chapters in Toronto, New York, L.A. and Miami.  For more info on The Society Global, visit their website,, or follow them on Twitter at

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