Thomastown Travel Guide
Calling all horse lovers: the Mount Juliet Conrad Hotel in Ireland is doing everything right for you. Not too many hotels have an equestrian center on site, but Mount Juliet does, complete with new stables, two arenas and both of those fence-jumping trails (show jumping and cross country fences, for those in the know).
The new equestrian center has just been officially opened and added to the list of reasons to book in to Mount Juliet. Those lucky enough to get to the opening saw all kinds of horsey stuff, including Ukrainian Cossack riding and, as they describe it, some "stylish side-saddle" demonstrations. We're sorry we missed it.
Mount Juliet is a pretty huge estate about two hours from Dublin, in County Kilkenny, and it's got a golf course, spa and a variety of kinds of accommodation. They offer equestrian packages that include bed and breakfast, lunch, a one-hour trail ride and a one-hour riding lesson--with riding hats and boots provided, so novices like us are welcome--starting at 245 (US$380) a night.
Non-horse-lovers are also welcome as they have a stack of other packages that might match your preference.