Gorey & Courtown Map and Tourist Information
Gorey first appeared as an existing town in Norman records in 1296. It is a carefully planned town with a wide Main Street boulevard and street plan, much like the plantation towns of North Wexford. The Church of Ireland parish church dates from
1861.The town Market House held prisoners of all sides during the holocaust of 1798, while Goreys streets and surrounding areas were wincing with the sound of marching feet and open debauchery. Saint Michaels Catholic parish church was
designed by the world famous architect Pugin, who is said to have been inspired by Dunbrody Abbey for his work on Saint Michaels. Pugin also designed the Loreto Convent which is beside Saint Michaels.
Gorey and its surroundings have plenty to offer the visitor. The town itself boasts fantastic Pugin and listed architecture. It is an ideal base for exploring both Wexford and Wicklow
The village is four miles south east of Gorey, which is the nearest rail and bus terminus. A bus service operates between Gorey and Courtown Harbour, and using this bus service the visitor can travel to Wexford, 24 miles away, along the picturesque coast road. COURTOWN enjoys freakish weather throughout the year, and is reputed to have one of the lowest annual rainfall in the country.
With only a difference of four feet between high and low tides, the bathing is superb, let the visitor be novice or expert. The beach is backed by sand dunes for almost its entire length, where one can sun bathe and relax, sheltered from the breeze irrespective of its direction. Though Courtown Harbour itself still retains its old world charm and natural beauty, it is today a very modern resort with all amenities.
Prior to 1820, the village was completely undeveloped, but in 1830, the harbour was built by the Courtown family on whose vast estate it stood, and it soon became a thriving fishing village. The present piers of the harbour were built by the Courtown family as part of a famine relief work in 1847.
Add this fact to the great natural beauty of the place and you have the perfect seaside resort. As the Gaelic name of the village indicates, Courtown is a beach resort and nature has endowed it with many splendid beaches. Extending to the north from Courtown Pier to Duffcarrig Rock is a magnificent two mile stretch of wide, smooth, sandy beach which affords perfectly safe bathing and is particularly ideal for children. Small rowing boats may be hired in the harbour for pleasure trips or for fishing.
The Qunvavarra River which flows into the harbour is ideal for boating trips. On a trip up the river the visitor passes through the wooded Courtown Estate with its unsurpassed variety of scenery, past the site of where Courtown House (the seat of the Courtown family) once stood and on to Ballinatray Bridge which carries the main Gorey-Courtown Harbour road. This bridge, which spans a deep gorge, is reputed to be one of the highest of the old stonework bridges in the country.
Among the many amenities which Courtown Harbour can boast of is one of the most picturesque 18-hole golf courses in the country.
There are also two amusement arcades in the village providing all the fun of the fair including bingo and other indoor games.
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