Clock out of the noise and grime for a day, or longer, and ‘clough’ in at one of rural Ireland’s most interesting small towns!

Set in the beautiful, rolling countryside of North Tipperary, yet just over a hundred minutes from Dublin by train, Cloughjordan is a world away from the stress and strain of modern urban Irish life.

Any weekday, you can take a morning train from Dublin and get to Cloughjordan in plenty time for elevenses (visit ‘getting here’ for times, details and alternatives) then in any order you want ….

Visit the new Thomas MacDonagh Heritage Centre where the Cloughjordan-born patriot is honoured. The heritage centre is a modern purpose-built museum and library with occasional exhibitions on a range of heritage related subjects. Open 12-4pm every day except Monday. Read about Thomas MacDonagh here or visit www.macdonaghheritage.ie.

Explore the treasures for sale in the ‘Sheelagh na Gig’ bookshop, enjoy the best coffee and cake in the county and check out the music, jewellery and books.

Visit Ireland’s first ecovillage, with many different kinds of eco-friendly houses being built and some already finished construction. (Tours every Saturday and Sunday – check thevillage.ie for details)

Enjoy a snack from Murphy’s or Austin’s or Gulan Kebbana & Pizza Bar.

Call in to the Makery on Main Street and see whats going on there today.

Have a pint and a sandwich in the Railway Bar or the Clough Inn.

Buy a present for someone you love in Thomas Wollen’s Ceramic Studio – there’s something for every taste in his beautiful, witty creations.

Visit artist Mary Pickering’s studio and look over her wonderful paintings and prints (see www.marypickering.ie)

Browse around ‘Stuff Antiques’ for a while – you might spot a bargain.

Take home a steak reared locally by Charlie Williams, a butcher with his own abattoir.

Take a stroll in Knockanacree Wood along specially designed routes suitable for all.

Visit Ireland’s first Community-supported farm (tours every Saturday – booking essential – see www.cloughjordancommunityfarm.ie)

Call to the Catholic Church of SS Michael and John to admire the classic Harry Clarke stained glass windows and avail of a rare chance to compare them to windows by Evie Hone who was influenced by him.

Change your mind and stay the night! Django’s Hostel (See www.djangoshostel.com or contact Pa at 087-2569348) is at the entrance to the Eco-village while bed and breakfast is also available in Cloughjordan House on the Step Road, (see www.sarahbaker.ie or contact Sarah Baker at 087-9690824) and in Courtyard Antiques on the Borrisokane Road (Contact Dawn O’Sullivan at 086-2689499).

Two other pubs are worth a visit Grace’s Bar & Snug, and Malone’s Corner House, if you fancy a drink.

If you really have to leave you can catch the train home at tea time – do please travel by train if you can – and do your bit to keep our rail line open.

Cloughjordan is a typical small town in the peaceful heart of Ireland. Surrounded by signs of ancient settlements, the rich land has attracted humans for millennia.

In the middle of lush limestone countryside, there are signs everywhere here of the importance of horse breeding and training alongside everyday agricultural activity. Signs too of the people of Cloughjordan’s interest and enthusiam for sports.

From above the town, overlooking the Knockanacree beech woods a panorama of green fields and brown bogs stretches from the distant Shannon river to the Slieve Bloom mountains and south to the Silvermines

Cloughjordan is steeped in history and its modern cultural diversity has been molded in the crucible of the past. The town has played a significant part in the shaping of the modern Irish State, being the birthplace of Thomas MacDonagh, a famous Irish revolutionary.

Cloughjordan is home to Ireland`s first `Eco-Neighbourhood`development.

So whether visitor or local, looking for information or trade, have a look around Cloughjordan’s own website and see why this town in middle country has a lot to offer.