Delta Sensory Gardens in Carlow, Ireland

Come away, O human child! To the waters and the wild…” Follow lines from W.B. Yeats’s “Stolen Child” through 16 interconnecting gardens designed to appeal to all of your senses. Between scents of sweet peas, lavender, and roses, as well as sounds of water, birds, and other natural music, every part of this imaginative dreamscape is designed for maximum accessibility.

Here you will discover shipwrecks and mushrooms, musical fountains and koi ponds, as well as a sleeping giant made of grass. Different materials are used throughout the garden in order to stimulate your sense of touch, including timber, steel, stone, and marble, as well as a number of unique tactile sculptures best seen with the hands.

Known simply as the Kugel, the highlight of the garden is a one-ton pink marble ball floating on a cushion of continuously pumped water. Even the smallest among your travel party will be able to enjoy rolling the giant rock along the water, but once the pump stops, the Kugel will budge for no one. It is the biggest water feature of its kind in Ireland. 

With areas designed by international award-winning gardener Paul Martin, flowers are planted to bloom year-round, including daffodils and tulips in the spring, double flowering gorse in the summer, and beech hedges during fall and winter.

Created by the Delta Centre, an Irish charity that “provides training, residential, respite, day and multi-sensory services to adults with intellectual disabilities,” admission fees to the garden support their continuing work.

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