A few minutes south of the village of Camolin, on the east side of Ireland about 90 minutes from Dublin, nestled in picturesque open fields with views of the countryside in all directions, you will find the Kilbora B&B owned by Anne Marie, offering four spacious and well appointed double or king size ground floor rooms.
Although on the busy N11 road from Dublin to Wexford, road noise is at a minimum when stood outside the property and totally absent from within the room we booked for the night.
One thing to note is that despite the reasonably large sign on the side of the road, it is quite easy to drive straight past the B&B’s entrance, especially as that stretch of the road is quite fast – but Anne Marie was very kind in offering some good directions in advance by email. If you are heading from Dublin, then once through the village of Camolin, you need to be watching for a meat processing factory on your left. The factory isn’t that obvious but a small sign with a picture of a factory and “300m” is your target. Once you see this I recommend you slow down immediately and start watching for the entrance to the B&B which is nestled between a group of trees on your right. This gives the cars behind ample time to slow down too!
From the Rosslaire / Wexford direction, then you will drive through a small village called Ferns, and turn right at a small roundabout which has a large modern looking church to the left. Turn right here towards Camolin / Dublin and after passing the Ferns Cattery on your left, you will again see a small factory 300m sign, and it’s time to slow down again and watch for the Kilbora B&B sign on your left.
A short way up the drive you will find the large house with ample parking.
We were given a very warm welcome on arrival by Anne Marie, and as we had arrived quite late in the evening, she was eager to ensure we had time for dinner so gave me a whirlwind tour of our two rooms before pointing us in the direction of the “Courtyard”, her recommended local pub and restaurant in the local village of Ferns, as they stopped serving food at 9 p.m. A lovely meal, to be reviewed separately.
Anne Marie had kindly upgraded us to a king size with en-suite, which was spacious and comfortable, finished to a high standard and well equipped.
As mentioned, all rooms are ground floor which is perfect for anyone with mobility issues, and there is even a ramp to the front door which is a thoughtful touch.
We had an excellent night’s sleep in the comfortable bed, but as normal I woke up a little earlier than Sue, and decided to take a walk, only to find an unexpected heavy frost across the the car and surrounding fields when I ventured outside.
An uncharacteristic arctic blast of cold air was currently sweeping down over the UK and Ireland during our stay in early May, which explained the sudden unexpected drop in temperature. Although it cleared quite quickly during the morning, I soon returned inside where it was nice and warm.
This did give me an opportunity to have a look around the property, which has a very nice tastefully decorated lounge area with sumptuous sofas and armchairs, large working fireplace for those chilly winter nights, antique furniture and pottery on display and even a beautifully polished upright piano that was clearly regularly used by someone in the household judging from the collection of music stacked on it. And while sorely tempted, at 7 a.m. it was maybe a little early for me to be tickling the ivory’s!
Breakfast was served in the equally ornate large dining room, and consisted of a variety of cereals, juices, and a nice selection of cooked items all cooked by Anne Marie and very well prepared and presented. I can honestly say that this was by far the best breakfast we experienced on our whole stay in Ireland, so hats off to our host.
Our casual breakfast gave us the opportunity to have a proper conversation with Anne Marie who was the perfect host, and also to thank her for the excellent recommendation for dinner the night before.
We also met some of the other guests and had interesting conversations with them – something that would hardly ever happen if we were staying in a hotel (although quite a common occurrence on our cruises).
Sue and I hadn’t stayed in a B&B for many years, as in the past we have had some fairly poor experiences both in childhood and our early married life, that had put us off the idea of B&B’s – obviously the industry have upped their game since then and we were pleasantly surprised throughout the week at the high standard of accommodation on offer, and the variety of nice people we met on the way. Anne Marie’s particularly warm, attentive and welcoming personality left us eager to experience more of that special personal approach that you just don’t get in a typical hotel environment.
It was a shame our stay was so brief, having arrived so late in the evening, and we would certainly have no problem returning to Kilbora B & B should we visit Ireland again in the future.