The beautiful Heywood Gardens at Ballinakill consist of 50 acres of gardens, lakes, woodland, and quirky architectural features. Free to enter and open to the public, it’s a great place to bring the kids for a walk.
You can park at the foot of the drive, and make your way around the scenic lake walk, through the mature, overhanging trees. Then climb the steps to the formal gardens, where Heywood House once stood. Along the way, are unusual points of interest, including a shrine, an obelisk, and a ‘Sham Castle’, built as a folly when the gardens were created.
Within the formal gardens is a pleached lime walkway, leading to a circular terraced garden with a sunken pool (can you spot the fish?), surrounded by a turtle fountain. It’s very pretty, and children seem to love the turtles!
After walking up an appetite, why not head into nearby Abbeyleix for lunch or a coffee?