Mysterious midnight adventures at the Liss Ard Estate, Ireland

The beautiful Liss Ard Estate is a hidden gem and a magical place to stay when visiting West Cork (Ireland).  Liss Ard Estate is situated just a few minutes from Skibbereen, right in the midst of the Irish countryside. The place goes back to the 1850; today the mansion is a place of enchantment and relaxation (and some big time rockstars as famous guests).

Sleeping with rock stars

Think: an elegant Georgian mansion dating back to 1850, surrounded by stunning countryside and a fantastic, mysterious lake. In the past it used to be a private haven for celebrities like Oasis, Lou Reed, Van Morrison, Patti Smith and Nick Cave. In recent years it has evolved to a fantastic place to stay for individual travelers, groups and families with kids.

Inside The Crater

Facilities are very complete and luxurious, but the biggest plus are the fantastic gardens with best of all: the ‘Irish Sky Garden’. This garden is actually a piece of art created by the American artist James Turrel: ‘The Crater’ is – not very surprisingly – a crater with a stone in the middle. It’s a mysterious yet calming and relaxing place, and if you lie on the stone the only thing you can see is the sky, and nothing else.

Midnight adventures

For a more intense experience, we were told to go into the crater by night, lie on our back on the stone and gaze at the stars. The thought of going into the woods at night did scare me a bit – big mouth but I’m really not your bravest girl – but this was a small midnight excursion I didn’t want to miss.  We waited until it was completely dark, took our torches, headed into the woods and found a complete silent – and very dark – crater. Yes, it wàs a bit scary, but the stars were amazing and the atmosphere very mysterious.

Our stay

Liss Ard Estate offers a variety of luxury accommodation, like the Victorian Country House (with contemporary design, the adjacent Garden Mews (a former 1800s stable block) and the Lake Lodge (a Victorian Dower house (available for self–catering or individual guest stays). We stayed in the Garden Mews and found it wonderful. Breakfast and diner were just amazing, and the staff made us feel right at home.

Apart from the fab stay, there the surroundings you never get tired of looking at: the forest and the lake are just absolutely mysterious and intriguing, it feels like you’re in a very special place.

Thel lake
Never got tired of this view

Our thoughts:

  • Perfect for groups and families.
  • Dinner and lunch is available, but there are possibilities to go self catering.
  • Kids love it here: there’s a special playroom and outdoor playground to keep them busy. During school holidays there’s a Kids’  Club.
  • Things to do: there are fishing boats, canoes, kayaks and bikes available. You can go walking and hiking, or explore the surroundings and go sightseeing.
  • The rooms are spacious and all have a romantic atmosphere.
  • It’s luxurious but still very relaxed and comfy, you’ll feel right at home. It’s the perfect place to escape everyday stress and enjoy nature.
  • Great in summer but also a perfect stay for a winter-break.
The estate has a great location: a couple of minutes from the Skibbereen, the most southerly town in Ireland, in county Cork. It’s a very attractive area with plenty of towns and villages to discover and a lot of nature to enjoy. Think: Ireland at its best. It will only take you about 70 minutes to drive from Cork Airport to Liss Ard Estate.
  1. Looks amazing! Must say I find it hard to picture Lou Reed or Nick Cave waltzing along the Crater though… but maybe they’re into bucolic spots, what do I know? Lovely place and lovely post, congrats. Good luck and safe travels!

  2. Wow! That looks like an amazing place to stay. We like to treat ourselves every once in a whil and that would make for a perfect break from our budget-backpacker routine! Thanks for sharing.

  3. How beautiful! Nick Cave obviously also has very good taste (I saw him here in Munich in November, he was amazing!!) 😀

    1. Hi Emma, tx for stopping by. Ow, we saw Nick Cave in Antwerp, just a couple of days before he went to Munich! He’s the best! 🙂

  4. It looks beautiful! I’d like to see the view from the stone at night, but I agree it would be a bit spooky. Sounds perfect for Nick Cave, though! 😀

  5. Guys, you are killing me with all those luxurious stays you write about. Feeling like a rock star. Kudos for going in the woods during the night. I too look much braver, than I actually am. Complete chicken in reality :). Thanks again for linking up to the #SundayTraveler.

    1. Hi Frank, it’s all about traveling like a VIP on a budget :), will do a post about that soon. Tx for the visit!

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