We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Santa Visit”
Review of Rathwood

Ranked #3 of 9 things to do in Tullow
More attraction details
Attraction details
Owner description: Rathwood is one of the most popular visitor attractions in Ireland with charming activities that everyone from Grandparents to Grandchildren can enjoy together; free children’s playground, Express train, woodland walks, birds of prey centre and restaurant as well as an array of shops. There is something for everybody. Rathwood, is particularly famous for its Express Train which takes you around the extensive forest grounds, watch out for the deer and sheep along the way and see if you can spot their newly born offspring. It even has a little stop off at the pond to allow you to feed the ducks and geese with food provided by the Train driver. In addition, Rathwood offers attractions such as the Falconry, which is an outdoor educational Bird of Prey Centre where eagles, hawks, falcons and owls from around the world can be seen on display; free Forest walks, with two easy trails that the whole family can enjoy; free children’s playground; cookery classes for both adults and children; deer park and much, much more. Furthermore they house an excellent restaurant which offers an array of delicious lunch dishes and tempting home baking. They are famous for their scrumptious chocolate mud pie and double layered pavlova and all Rathwood's cakes are baked daily by their talented Pastry Chef Margaret, who has been with them for over 18 years. Special diets eg coeliacs are catered for with a delicious selection of gluten free meals and treats. Rathwood hosts a number of special seasonal events throughout the year and advance booking is highly recommended eg The Santa Train - Ireland’s most popular Santa visit with magic and interactive fun with Santa, Mrs Claus and the Elves. The Rathwood Centre in addition to their attraction host an array of shops for you, your family, home and garden. Rathwood has something for the whole family that will make you want to return time and time again.
Reviewed December 8, 2014

What a lovely place, they really made an efford with the santa train. Thie Santa train staff are amazing, great energy and fun. It was very well done and my two boys had a great time.

We went back the next day and had lunch, the food was OK I expected more from the lunch, it was a little disappointing. But the santa visit and the great staff is what I will remember this place for. Thank you for creating the memory.

Thank truenatural
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a ReviewReviews (371)
Traveler rating
Traveler type
Time of year
All reviews
"santa train"
in 58 reviews
"teddy bears picnic"
in 31 reviews
"train ride"
in 27 reviews
"santa experience"
in 20 reviews
"garden centre"
in 41 reviews
"next year"
in 22 reviews
in 16 reviews
"free hot chocolate"
in 8 reviews
"kids and adults"
in 8 reviews
"from start to finish"
in 11 reviews
"meet santa"
in 6 reviews
"baby bear"
in 4 reviews
in 15 reviews
"nice restaurant"
in 4 reviews
"easter egg hunt"
in 5 reviews
"pumpkin carving"
in 5 reviews
"great quality"
in 4 reviews

278 - 282 of 371 reviews

Reviewed December 5, 2014

Last year we went to causey farm and had a great experience. Rathwood was recommended to us by a friend so we decided to give it a try. And we regret it. The opening is ok, you wait in a holding area and then get a warm up by Mrs Claus and her Doc helper. To be honest they were probably the best part of the experience. After that it went down hill. A 'Jack Frost' character brought us on the most un-Christmas themed train and spent the short journey to the woods cracking jokes about rocks and logs and slagging off parents for not joining in. When we 'disembarked' we were brought to meet Santa. This was the worst part of the experience. The 'Elves' called people like we were in a GP surgery and 'Santa' was a nice guy but the beard was hanging off and the whole experience was like something from the 80's. We then went back to a waiting area and spent 15 minutes with some really uncomfortable 'entertainment' from a group of teenagers dressed as elves. A real mess with most parents too embarrassed to say anything. Another train ride back to the garden center saw santa's elves charging 2 euro for a ride on the carousel. Our kids wanted to know why Santa's elves wanted money. It really stank. We paid for a photo in a frame, we got a photo in a cardboard frame. Nice.
Compared to Causeylast year, this was a disaster. Even kids seemed let down and asked could we go to causey to see the real santa again. We might just do that to make up for this complete let down. We wont ever return or recommend.

9  Thank DazzaMazzaSwazza
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 2, 2014 via mobile

We recently brought my 3 & a half year old daughter & 19th month old son to Rathwood Santa train. My daughter really enjoyed it from collecting food for Rudolph to meeting Mrs Clause & trip on train to see Santa. The only let down was the toys received,my daughter received a teddy & my son a toy that straps onto cot. We saw some lovely toys that older children received but I feel more thought needs to go into younger children's toys especially 1-2 age group.

3  Thank marie197
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 2, 2014

Travelled from Co. Louth specifically for the Santa Train, stayed over locally and did the train yesterday. Well worth the trip. Decent food in the restaurant for lunch, play area for the kids before the train and a well organised and novel way to meet the great man himself. Kids, aged seven and three, loved it. Didn't have a chance to browse the shop itself, but what we did see, we liked. Well done to all involved.

Thank FranLouth
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
See more reviews
Reviewed November 25, 2014 via mobile

We visited Rathwood for the first time. Well worth the trip. ( from galway). We had beautiful food in the restaurant. Did some shopping in their fab shop. The Santa Train was very well organised, the elves were brilliant and great fun. Would highly recommend it!

3  Thank Colette O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Rathwood also viewed


Been to Rathwood? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing