I was born in a nursing home in Tramore, a seaside town in County Waterford in 1949, but grew up in Waterford City. When I got married I moved to Dublin, but then 23 years later I moved back to my hometown of Waterford.
Waterford is Ireland’s oldest city and the history dates to Viking times. It is in the South-East Region of Ireland and is part of the province of Munster.
Viking raiders first established a settlement near Waterford in 853. Waterford celebrated its 1100th anniversary in 2014.
Today the Viking and Norman past can be seen in the narrow streets and town walls of the Viking Triangle.
It remains a busy port city and it is famous as the home of Waterford crystal.
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Most people have heard of Waterford because of Waterford Crystal. Waterford Crystal was first established in 1783 and this is when they had their first glass making factory. It closed after 70 years of operating in 1853 but reopened in 1947.
The company is still going today, and you can see it in the heart of Waterford City at the House of Waterford Crystal Design Studio.
Reginald’s Tower was built in honour of a Viking, Ragnall, who ruled Waterford in the 10th century. Go inside and walk up the narrow spiral staircase to the second floor to look out over Waterford and see some ancient metalwork.
The Medieval Museum is a fantastic history museum of Waterford that displays the Great Charter Roll of 1373, which shows how Waterford was in the medieval ages. The Cloth-of-Gold vestment these are priceless silk panels that date from the 1400s and are of various scenes from the Bible.
Bishop’s Palace is an elegant townhouse where you can discover the Georgian period. The palace has artefacts and paintings of Waterford that date back 300 years.
Waterford Greenway, it is a 46km off-road cycling and walking trail along an old railway line between Waterford and Dungarvan and it is a beautiful walk.
Waterford is home to many beautiful beaches; the Copper Coast is a stretch of coastline that is a home to some stunning cliffs as well as sandy beach trails.
The Copper Coast can be traced back to the Ice Age! It was formed after two volcanoes exploded from the ocean over 360 million years ago.
I spent my summers on the Backstrand Beach, also known locally as Saleens, a beautiful unspoilt sandy beach. I loved to sit on the Saleens beach and look across at the Sand Hills in Tramore.
It is a narrow deep channel with a very fast tidal flow that separates the two strands. The beach is a 15-minute drive from Waterford city.
Opposite Tramore sandhills, there is a spot where I still visit to clear the city noise in my head. I reminisce about my childhood when I was collecting shells, stones & driftwood.
Woodstown beach is another beautiful sandy beach, a 15-minute drive from Waterford City. This beach reminds me of when Jackie Kennedy stayed nearby and rode her horse daily here. It is a magical spot.
I am at my happiest when I am beside the sea. When my kids were young, we often went on holiday to Kinsale.
This region of Munster is where I love to travel to now and when I was growing up. I brought up my kids in the area and we went on holiday to the local counties. Now, as a senior, I still love visiting these areas, as it is home to me.
Brenda Bergin is a Munster senior lass through and through that loves Ireland and blogging. My blog was born 6 years ago while battling cancer.
To see more of my travel adventures in Ireland and around the world follow my blog at www.digigran.biz.
Photography by Catherine Drea, Foxglove Lane Studio, County Waterford.
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