Arise and go
No, it’s not Innisfree, but West Cork’s Liss Ard has all the low sounds of lake water lapping you could wish for, together with forest walks and James Turrell’s famous Irish Sky Garden to enjoy, as the leaves change and seasons turn. Fully done up, made over and on 163 acres, including a 40 acre private lake — where else would you want to retreat to? From €199 per night. Some of the rooms are dog-friendly too, so it’s worth a bark if you want to bring your four-pawed pal.
A good harvest
Next weekend all foodie roads lead to Waterford for the 13th Harvest Festival (September 9th-11th). Enjoy pop ups, markets, special events, fabulous feasts and the Waterford Honey Show, which should get you buzzing with sweet enthusiasm. Discover local tastes, and even indulge in a little Bug Bingo — whatever that may be. Stay in the heart of the city at the Tower Hotel, where their Fall into Winter package gives you two nights’ B&B and a three-course dinner on one evening, from €260 for two.
When Galway is your oyster
I can never remember if you should or shouldn’t eat oysters when there’s an “R” in the month. I’m guessing you should as Galway’s G Hotel is hosting a Bubbles & Pearls Champagne & Seafood event ahead of the Galway Oyster Festival (September 23rd-25th) on September 22nd. Stay overnight and get a glass of champagne, seafood canapés, dinner with local seafood, including plenty of oysters and more champagne, plus breakfast the next morning, from €247 pps. I’m not quite sure where the pearls come in, unless you get lucky with your oyster? Oysters not your thing? The G’s two-night autumn getaway gives you cocktails, dinner on one night, breakfast, plus parking and a chauffeur car to the city, if you’re so inclined. From €145 pps.
Another city, another festival ... Dublin welcomes the Fringe from September 10th-25th. Highlights include thisispopbaby’s Wake at the National Stadium, and a night-time trip around the National Botanic Gardens where they’re installing sound and light installations. With more than 400 artists taking part in the programme, and almost 600 performances, it’s quite the event. These days getting accommodation in Dublin is almost an event in itself, especially if you’re travelling solo. Stauntons on the Green have a single room from €209 per night — though it does book out fast, and prices vary. Dublin’s Drury Court also has single rooms, from €219 room only.