Birr , County Offaly
This is a place you may not come across when planning your Ireland tours.....but it is a bit of a hidden gem !!!
Birr has the grey stone houses of an Irish midlands town but is laid out around a dignified Georgian square. This was an early attempt at town planning.
Birr castle is worth a visit and it houses the remains of a telescope built in 1843 by the Earl of Rosse. At the time it was the worlds largest telescope.
Birr is a fishing centre and a good base to explore the Slieve Bloom Mountains. These are a ridge of low hills covered by heather and forested as well.
If you drive to "the Cut" there are great views.
Birr is definitely a hidden gem for any tours of Ireland.