What You Need to Know About County Laois

Visiting County Laois? This part of the Irish Province of Leinster has a number of attractions you will not want to miss. Plus some interesting sights that are slightly off the beaten path. So why not take your time and spend a quiet, but steamy day or several not-so-quiet days in Laois (and especially Stradbally) when visiting Ireland?

Here are some ideas to make it worth your while.

  • 01 of 05

    Laois, the Basics

    County Laois Mapped
    ••• © Bernd Biege 2014

    Need to know some facts about County Laois? Well, here's help:

    • The Irish name of County Laois is Contae Laoise, literally translated this would be identifying "(The Men of) Lugaid Laígne".
    • Between 1556 and 1920 Laois was officially known as "Queen's County" in honor of Queen Mary ("Bloody Mary").
    • Cars registered in County Laois have the letters LS on their numberplates.
    • The county town is Port Laoise, other towns of regional importance are Abbeyleix, Mountrath, Portarlington, and Rathdowney.
    • The size of County Laois was measured at 1,719 square kilometres.
    • According to the 2011 census, there are 80,559 people living in County Laois.
  • 02 of 05

    Stradbally in Steam

    Stradbally Estate offers all sorts of attractions, from riding stables right down to getting hitched (it is a wedding venue after all). But many people get quite steamy when Stradbally is mentioned ... due to the museum and the special events.

    The museum of the Irish Steam Preservation Society caters for the enthusiast and the public alike - with a wide-ranging collection of engines and machinery, most (but not all) powered by steam. And if you want to experience steam power in action, head for the running days of the Stradbally Hall Narrow Gauge Railway.

    Or, even better, make a bee-line for the mammoth rally in August - from steam engines to kerosine tractors and loads more.

  • 03 of 05

    Electric Picnic at Stradbally

    Want to let off steam, dance the night away, meet like-minded people (in droves) and enjoy one of the more up-market and relaxed music festivals in Europe? Well, head for the Electric Picnic at Stradbally. Presenting an eclectic mix of music style with a strong focus on 1980s as well as up-and-coming bands.

  • 04 of 05

    More Information on County Laois and the Province of Leinster

    Continue to 5 of 5 below.
  • 05 of 05

    Moving On - Beyond Laois' Borders

    Enough time spent in County Laois? Then carry on in the neighboring counties: