Of all the places we've been and all the places we'll go, Temple House is one place we'll never forget - a unique combination of house, room and grounds to explore- all hosted by an extremely personable owner.
We're a family of 3 who stayed 1 night. We were greeted by Temple House owner Roderick Perceval and the other house masters (a group of 5 of the most enthusiastic, but well-behaved dogs) as soon as we got out of our car. Roderick gave us the lay of the land and showed us to our room known as the 'half-acre.' The room was actually two rooms with an outstanding en-suite - perfect for our family of three. Always a huge plus for our teenager to have his own room while on vacation. The main suite was absolutely huge - you could literally have a catch in the room - and wonderfully appointed with period furniture. Huge light-inviting picture windows overlooked sheep-filled pastureland.
The entire estate is an attraction in and of itself. 1000 acres that include the huge Temple House itself, adjacent castle house ruins, a lake to explore by row boat, a giant ruined walled garden with wild rose bushes and crab apple trees, and a big old ruin of a centuries-old stable house - and that's all we could see in the 3 short sun-filled hours we had to roam the estate. Particularly memorable of our Temple House adventure was the unexpected company of three of the Perceval dogs - two black labs and a very water-friendly spaniel(?) joined us for the entire afternoon - it was almost like they were showing us their own favorite places around the estate - no map required. Even when our son went his own way to explore for a while, the smaller of the two labs went with him while the other two dogs stayed with my wife and I - the larger lab always with a fetching stick at the ready...
Because this was the only night during our Ireland trip we had to see Benbulben, we had dinner up in Mullaghmore (just a bit north of Sligo) at a wonderful seaside restaurant called Eithnas - all very convenient to Temple House.
The next morning, a delicious made-to-order breakfast was served up in the company of two friends traveling on holiday from Philly. After checking out, just a 5 minute drive away, we headed over to 'Eagles Flying' for an amazing show of birds of prey.
If/when we are fortunate enough to be back in Ireland, we will go out of our way to be sure we can spend more than a just one night at Temple House!