Like a town plucked from a book of fairy tales, Adare has thatched cottages, black-and-white timbered houses, lichen-covered churches, and romantic ruins, all strewn along the banks of the River Maigue. Unfortunately, all of this means that Adare has been seriously discovered by the tour-bus crowds—even by May, which is still officially off-season, the roads can get clogged at times—but it’s still absolutely worth a stop. Drop in at the Adare Heritage Centre on Main Street, roughly in the middle of the village. Part visitor center, part museum on the history of the town, it also has a small craft store and a shop selling Irish woollens. From June to September the center also runs bus tours to Desmond Castle, costing €9 adults, €7 seniors, students, and children, and €20 families.