As Mother’s Day looms on March 27th, this will be the second I’ll be spending without my mum. I loved travelling with my mother. We spent many special weekends together in cities scattered across Europe and shared moments that I will cherish forever – those memories keep me connected to her now. That’s why I’ve gathered together some lovely things to do and special places to stay in Ireland to celebrate mothering with that special aunty, sister, daughter and all the mothers in your life.
Afternoon tea is a reasonably inexpensive way to spoil your mum. One of my first Afternoon Teas included a glass of Prosecco at Tankardstown House in County Meath. Dotted around the country are lots of grand houses and fabulous options to enjoy this most girlie treat. Kilkenny is only an hour away from the largest towns in the east and south of the country. Butlers House in the centre of the city has made afternoon tea a specialty, serving it in a stylish marquee in the manicured gardens during the summer months. For €35 per person this is perfect day trip with mum. www.butler.ie
Kilkenny buzzes with life and is good for a spot of shopping too. Another gem in this county is Mount Juliet with afternoon tea priced at €40pp. You could gift mum a voucher to play the Irish Open Golf Course too if she is that way inclined. www.Mountjuliet.ie
In the north of the country Hastings Hotels offer a wide range of lovely options and with six hotels to choose from you’ll find something for every budget. Derry is a city where I’ve had wonderful times with my daughter and there is always the Derry Girls afternoon Tea at the Everglades Hotel that is not to be missed – especially if your mum is a fan of the hit TV comedy.
Belfast is only a short hop away these days from Dublin and the Europa Hotel is offering special deals to celebrate its 50th anniversary from £75pps including dinner. The Grand Central has probably the very best views of Belfast from the panoramic lounge on the roof and it’s the perfect spot to enjoy a cocktail at the end of the evening. Afternoon Tea starts from £45pp. If you can’t make up your mind which part of the north to explore then a Hastings Gift voucher comes with a very snazzy box in a golden foiled envelope that will have your mum’s heart racing to find out what is inside. www.Hastingshotels.com
You can make your mum feel like a queen with a stay at a castle. Kilronan Castle in Roscommon offers one of the most luxurious castle experiences and includes a luxury spa treatment, dinner in the 2AA Rosette Star Douglas Hyde restaurant and an overnight stay for two people at €415 inclusive. Meanwhile in the kingdom of Kerry, your mum will feel whisked away in an aura of elegance at Ballyseede Castle. An overnight stay including breakfast and with Afternoon Tea on arrival is €184 per room. You can book both of these Castles through Original Irish Hotels who have over 55 properties to choose from around Ireland. www.originalirishhotels.com
In case you haven’t heard yet one of the most unique boutique hotels in the country is perched high above Cork City. The Montenotte Hotel shares the most spectacular views and while dining in the Panorama restaurant last week I could have been in Athens, or any European Capital gazing over the sparkling city lights below. The cocktails are yummy and food delicious – I enjoyed a mouth-watering monkfish dish and the specialty Pink Club left my taste-buds dancing. To celebrate Mother’s Day and beyond the team at The Montenotte Hotel have an incredible Luxury Spa Experience package which includes Bed & Breakfast, Dinner in the Panorama Bistro, a 50-minute spa treatment with Prosecco at Bellevue Spa and a box of Irish handmade chocolates in your room on arrival for two guests. The outdoor spaces are special and you can enjoy a nightly movie in the luxury in-house Cameo cinema along with unlimited access to Motion Health Club with 20 metre swimming pool. This package is available from €430 per room per stay. www.themontenottehotel.com
This year I’ll be having my special moments with my daughter and I’ve already planned our next trip to one of my favourite spots which is a member of Ireland’s Blue Book. For now it’s a surprise but I will be sharing all the details about it anon. If you still can’t make up your mind what to give mum then you can always buy her a Blue Book voucher – it never goes out of date and every year the hotels in the group enjoy boasting who has been given the oldest voucher. www.irelandsbluebook.com
We’ve all had a tough couple of years so this is a great summer to make memories with the special ladies in your life.