As we planned our trip to Ireland, we combed though many different sites with the “Best Places to visit in Ireland” title. I kept coming across Powerscourt Estate and each time I was stunned with the pictures. Even though it was a about an hour outside of Dublin, I knew we needed to get there.
The History of Powerscourt Estate
The Powerscourt family took ownership of the house in the 16th century; but it wasn’t until the 18th century when the 1st Viscount of Powerscourt had the house remodeled. The work started in 1731 and finished in 1741. It was just over 100 years before the house would be renovated again by Mervyn Wingfield. Mervyn also created the beautiful gardens just outside of the house. The gardens were completed about 20 years later in 1880.
On November 4, 1974, there was a fire that destroyed the house and it had to be rebuilt. It was fully renovated in 1996. Powerscourt Estate has since been voted in the Top Ten Houses in the World as well as #3 in The World’s Top Ten Gardens.
We were staying in Dublin, so we needed to get our group of 7 people South to Enniskerry for the day. There were some group tour buses that would stop at Powerscourt and then head onto Glendalough. Although Glendalough looks beautiful as well, I knew I didn’t want to be rushed through Powerscourt Estate. Therefore, we opted out of the tour bus route.
Instead, we relied on public transportation to get there. This would give us the flexibility that we wanted for our visit. There was a grocery store just outside of where we were staying in Dublin and there we purchased our 24 hour bus pass. We hopped on the bus at a stop nearby and enjoyed the hour or so ride to Enniskerry.
The bus takes you right into the center of Enniskerry. Powerscourt isn’t far from where you are dropped, but it happens to be at the bottom of a pretty steep hill. After you climb the hill (that’s the hardest part), then you get to the entrance of the estate. It is still a bit of a walk until you reach the entrance, but it was a beautiful walk. The views over the countryside were astounding and worth every step.
What to see
As you enter the house you will stumble onto many different small shops and a yummy cafe on the ground floor. While we were there, the upstairs had an interior design store as well as a doll house museum. It is possible to spend a good amount of time wandering through the house and checking out the shops, but the outside is where the fun is!
Some of the Sights at Powerscourt Estate
Time Needed at Powerscourt Estate
Depending on your pace, it is quite easy to spend many hours walking and enjoying the gardens outside. Due to that, grab some lunch and sit outside to enjoy your meal, the view does not disappoint. Be sure to hit the bathroom before making your way out, you won’t find any out and about on the grounds.