Top Free Things to do in Laois

Many local attractions are free, these are a few of our favourites. See our hotel information booklet for more information.

Climb the Rock of Dunamase

Located 10 minutes by car from the hotel. The rock, 46 metres above a flat plain, has the ruins of Dunamase, a defensive stronghold dating back from the early Hiberno- Norman period with views across the Slieve Bloom Mountains. Only a few arches remain of the original structure, as the castle was all but destroyed some 200 years after it was built in the 12th century. Even so, the castle foundations are clear enough to imagine what this sight may have looked like in its day. ­­­It is near the N80 road between Portlaoise and Stradbally.

Emo Court & Gardens

The Neoclassical mansion in Emo is just 12km by car from the hotel. The house and gardens attracts locals and visitors from all over the country. Visit and enjoy the beautiful gardens and parklands which were first laid out in the 18th century. Walks around the lake are a popular way to explore the beautiful grounds. The first Wednesday of every month is free for a tour of the house. While on the grounds of Emo Court, a visit to CaToCa Find Food and Giftware is a must with 10% off for guests of the hotel (not valid on sale items)

Timahoe Round Tower

Located 12 km from the hotel, the round tower was built sometime in the 1100s, on the site of a religious community founded by Saint Mochua (a 7th-century warrior who converted to Christianity) around 600 AD. The tower rises almost 30 metres high and is more than 17 metres wide at its base, with walls that are nearly two metres thick. Inside there are five different floors, all of which were reached by ladders.  In times gone by, Timahoe Round Tower was a beacon for travellers looking for the monastery. Bells contained within its stones would be rung to call the monks to prayer and perhaps to signal when the monastery was under attack. The tower stands in a picturesque setting across a footbridge that crosses the Bauteogue River.

Heywood Gardens

Located 21 km from the hotel was completed in 1912 and consists of 50 acres of woodland, gardens and lakes including a sunken garden designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens. Heywood Gardens have a spectacular setting on a hillside looking South-East over a sweep of undulating country which takes in 7 counties. Admission is free.

Visit the Slieve Bloom Mountains

There are beautiful walks and views in many parts of the Slieve Bloom Mountains. Moniknew is very popular: short walks, picnic benches and a stream for paddling. Enjoy a view over Offaly from the Cut. Visit the waterfalls in Glenbarrow or take a walk around Brittas Lake in Clonaslee

Visit Portlaoise Farmers Market

Every Friday from 10am-3pm in Market square Portlaoise. Shoppers will be able to buy fresh local produce and goods such as fruit and vegetables, cakes, cheese and jams directly from the growers, farmers and producers.

Search our FAQs

Common Questions

  • Location & Parking

    Is there parking near the Hotel?

    Yes, we offer secure complimentary car parking at the hotel with space for approximately 300 cars.

    How much do I pay for parking?

    Car parking is complimentary at the hotel.

    How Far is Kildare Village Shopping Outlet from the hotel?

    The hotel is located 35km from Kildare Village, just off exit 13 on the M7 Motorway. We offer guests a discount voucher which entitles you to 10% off most stores in the Village.

    How far is the Hotel from Portlaoise train station?

    The hotel is located 3.5km from Portlaoise train station. A taxi from the train station will cost approximately €6 – €8.

    Does the hotel offer a Shuttle Bus or Taxi Service to Electric Picnic?

    We can arrange a taxi to Electric Picnic for you. Please get in touch with our reception team.

    How far is the Hotel from the Curragh Racecourse?

    The hotel is located 41km from the Curragh Racecourse. Take exit 12 off the M7 Motorway.

    How far is Kildare Village Shopping Outlet from the hotel?

    The hotel is located 35km from Kildare Village, just off exit 13 on the M7 Motorway. We offer guests a discount voucher which entitles you to 10% off most stores in the Village.

    How far is the Hotel from Portlaoise train station?

    The hotel is located 3.5km from Portlaoise train station. A taxi from the train station will cost approximately €6 – €8.

    How far is the hotel from Portlaoise town centre?

    Maldron Hotel Portlaoise is 2km from the town centre away.

    How far is the hotel from Laois Shopping Centre?

    The hotel is located just 2km from Laois Shopping Centre.

    Which exit off the M7 motorway is the hotel located?

    Exit 17 off the M7 Motorway.

    What are the public transport links to Portlaoise town centre?

    There are taxis available to hire from the hotel.

    How do I get to your hotel when travelling by Ferry?

    From Dublin Port to Maldron Hotel Portlaoise, Co Laois: 1 hour 23 minutes and 106.68 km

    From Rosslare Port to Maldron Hotel Portlaoise, Co Laois: 1 hour 57 minutes and 130.65 km

    From Belfast Port to Maldron Hotel Portlaoise, Co Laois: 3 hours 20 minutes and 262.59km

    From Cork Port to Maldron Hotel Portlaoise, Co Laois: 1 hour 45 minutes and 166.69km

    For information on route look at AA Ireland.

    How do I get to your hotel when travelling by plane?

    From Dublin Airport to Maldron Hotel Portlaoise: 1 hour 15 Minutes and 101.85km

    From Shannon Airport to Maldron Hotel Portlaoise, Co Laois: 1 hour 34 Minutes and 139.34km

    From Knock International Airport to Maldron Hotel Portlaoise, Co Laois: 2 hours 34 minutes and 179.08km

    From Cork Airport to Maldron Hotel Portlaoise, Co Laois: 1 hour 53 Minutes and 175.86km

    From Kerry Airport to Maldron Hotel Portlaoise, Co Laois: 2 Hours 28 minutes and 202.89km

    From Derry Airport to Maldron Hotel Portlaoise, Co Laois: 4 Hours 32 Minutes and 336.12km

  • Hotel Services

    What time is check-in?

    Check-in time is at 3 pm.

    What time is check-out?

    Check-out time is at 12 noon. Late departures are available until 4 pm upon request for an additional charge.

    How late can I check into the Hotel?

    Guest must check-in before 11pm. Please phone ahead if you will arrive later than 11pm at the hotel.

    Are there babysitting services available?

    Yes, we offer babysitting services. Please ask when making your reservation.

    Can I get a cot for my child?

    Yes, cots are available. As there is a limited availability, please note this at the time of your reservation.

    Is there somewhere I can leave my bag if I arrive early or need to collect it after I check-out?

    Yes, you can leave your luggage with our receptionists.

    Does the hotel have WiFi?

    Yes, complimentary high-speed WiFi is available throughout the hotel and bedrooms.

    Are there smoking rooms in the hotel?

    No, the hotel operates a strict non-smoking policy.

    Is there a laundry service available?

    Yes, you can leave your laundry with us and we’ll take care of it. Please note that charges do apply.

  • Rooms

    Do you have larger family rooms for families with more than 2 kids?

    Yes, we offer larger family rooms which include 2 doubles and 1 single bed. These rooms are offered at a supplement. Please call the hotel directly on +353 (0)57 869 5900 to discuss.

    Do you accommodate rooms for 2 adults and 3 children?

    Yes, we offer family rooms in the hotel which have 1 double and 2 single beds. We are happy to negotiate a rate for interconnecting rooms. Please contact us directly to discuss +353 (0)57 8695900.

    Are there hairdryers in the bedrooms?

    Yes, hairdryers are available in all bedrooms for complimentary guest use.

    Are pets allowed at the hotel?

    No, only guide dogs are allowed.

    Do you supply travel adapters?

    No, we do not supply travel adapters but they are available to purchase in shops nearby.

  • Dining

    What time is breakfast?

    Monday to Friday from 7 am – 10 am.

    Weekends & Bank Holidays from 8 am – 11 am

    I booked room only. How much is it for breakfast?

    The full Vitality Breakfast is €11 per person. The Kids Breakfast (under 12) is €6 per child.

    I am staying on a Sunday. Do you serve food on Sundays?

    The hotel offers breakfast from 8 am to 11 am, Lunch from 12.30pm to 3 pm and an Early Bird/A La Carte menu from 5.30pm to 8 pm on Sundays.

  • Booking

    Can I cancel my booking?

    Yes, Maldron Hotel Portlaoise offers free cancellation up to 2 pm on the day of arrival. Some special offers and key dates outlined in the terms and conditions may specify a special cancellation policy applicable to that offer or date. These terms will be outlined in the terms & conditions.

    Do I need a credit card to make a booking?

    Yes, to make a booking, a valid credit card is required to guarantee your reservation. Please note credit/debit cards may be pre-authorised prior to arrival.

    You will be required to authorise your credit card upon check-in but this is for security purposes only and you can choose your preferred payment option on departure. Please note pre-authorisation cannot be completed on debit cards and payment will be required on check-in if a credit card is not available.

    Will my credit/debit card be charged on booking?

    Bookings require a credit card for a guarantee unless in cases where this is otherwise stated. For some special offers and specific dates, full payment is required at time of booking but these terms will be outlined in the special offer terms & conditions.

  • Facilities

    Does the hotel offer family facilities?

    Yes. We have a kids’ pool and family bedrooms. Also, our Crafty Kids Club is available during school holidays.

    Do you offer a kids club?

    Yes, our Crafty Kids Club is available during school holidays from 6.30pm to 8pm each evening.

    What are the opening hours of the leisure facilities?

    Monday to Friday: 7am – 10pm

    Weekend & Bank Holidays: 8am – 8pm

    Children are allowed until 6.45pm. Please note that all kids must be supervised under the age of 14 at all time by a parent in the pool.

    Do I need to pay for using the Club Vitae Leisure Centre?

    The use of the leisure facilities is complimentary to all guests staying in the hotel. The leisure centre offers a pool, sauna, steam rooms, Jacuzzi and fully equipped gym.

    How deep is the Pool in Club Vitae Leisure Centre?

    The pool depth is 1.2 meters.

    Is there a spa in the hotel?

    Yes, the Body & Soul Therapy rooms are located on the first floor of the hotel. They offer a variety of complementary holistic treatments and also a range of beauty treatments tailored to suit your needs.

    What are the opening times from the spa area?

    The opening times are Tuesday to Saturday from 10am – 6pm. Should you require a Sunday appointment, advance booking is required with a minimum of four people. You can contact the spa team directly on +353 (0)57 869 5933.

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