From cool coffee shops and hopping pubs to the Garage Theatre, the town’s vibrant arts hub, local tour guide, Laura Sherry, tells us where to go and what to see in her hometown of Monaghan:
I might be a tad biased, but Monaghan Town Tours are a fantastic way of exploring the town. We talk about the history of the town and the stories behind places such as Peter’s Lake, the Market House, the Courthouse and the Diamond, to name but a few. Tours run every Saturday between the months of April and September and begin outside the Westenra Arms hotel at 11am.
Rossmore Park is one of my favourite places to spend a good day in. Once the Demesne of the Westenra family, who held the baronetcy of Rossmore, sadly the castle no longer stands, having been demolished in the 1970’s due to extensive damage caused by dry rot. There are many wonderful amenities in the park, such as the extensive walks, the playground, and the Coffee Dock. The Rossmore Giants can be found peppered throughout the park if you know where to look!
Monaghan Farmer’s Market is held every Friday morning and is host to many local and artisan food producers and suppliers. Fresh fruit and vegetables, fresh fish, local artisan food producers and craft producers are present every week, including food trucks like Blasta Street Kitchen and Paelling Food Truck and Catering.
If you are looking for restaurants in Monaghan town, you will be certainly spoilt for choice! For lunch, I recommend the Cottontail Café, Neighbourhood, the Screaming Bean Café, Dinkin’s, Granny Grahams and Barley and Bean. Grinded, Coffee Break with Barbara, and Coffee Angel are great to stop in for a quick coffee. The Batch Loaf, Eastern Balti, Andy’s, Monaghan Spice and Taste of Tuscany are wonderful places to have an evening meal in, while the Four Seasons Hotel, Hillgrove Hotel and Westenra Arms Hotel have great food on their premises as well.
The Garage Theatre is wonderful amenity located on the outskirts of Monaghan town. It plays host to a variety of performances by both professional companies and local community groups, including Monaghan Youth Theatre. Comedy shows, plays, and musicals are put on, on a regular basis.
Monaghan has many great pubs and bars, many of which host live music. McKenna’s have a wonderful Open Mic night every Thursday, and they put on a variety of music and comedy during the weekends. Terry’s is a lovely pub that hosts live music also. The Westenra Arms Hotel have live music in their Tavern bar every weekend, while the Four Seasons Hotel and Hillgrove Hotel will have various events and concerts on during the year. Monaghan also holds music festivals such as Féile Oriel and The Harvest Times Blues Festival.
An honorary mention that I have is the Monaghan County Museum. While unfortunately it is closed until early 2024, I can’t forget to mention one of our best amenities. It has a wide variety of objects to do with the long breadth of Monaghan’s history and hosts fascinating exhibitions that focus on different aspects of the history of Monaghan. I would highly recommend that people visit it when it opens again in its new space in the Monaghan Peace Campus.
Catch Laura and her Monaghan Town tour guide colleagues on Saturday mornings at 11am, outside the Westenra Arms Hotel until the end of September 2023.