Strokestown is situated 95 miles west of Dublin. The town is served by the N5 National Primary Route, which runs northwest from Longford to Castlebar. The R368 enters Strokestown from Carrick-on-Shannon in the northeast and links into the N61, which runs southward into Roscommon town. The demesne of Strokestown Park House borders the town to the east.
The town is set in the picturesque valley between Sliabh Ban in the southeast and the Caslin Hills to the north. These hills to the north are of enormous archaeological interest, containing unusual pre-historic fossils.Sliabh Ban or White Mountain, derives its name from the fact that the rocks which form the mountain are paler in colour i.e. sandstone and conglomerates rather than the grey limestone of the surrounding plains. It offers tourists a forest walk of c.20km ranging from 150m to 258m elevation, along with panoramic viewing points.
The Irish name of Strokestown is Bel-Ath-na-mBuilli; translated this means them mouth (ford) of the Strokes. The mouth refers to the Bumlin River that runs through the demesne and the Strokes may refer to a battle that took place in the region. Others believe that Stroke signifies the use of agricultural instruments, which would have been widely used in the past.
Strokestown is an estate town, one of the few planned towns in the county.The town falls within the final phase of estate town foundation as the new landlord system spread further west. Strokestown is located on the main east-west route between Westport and Dublin.
The town was planned around Strokestown House by the Packenham Mahon Family who wished to create the widest main street in Europe. This culminated in the Church Street/Bawn Street axis, which extends from the entrance gate of Strokestown Park House to St. John’s Heritage Centre.
Strokestown Park House is an 18th century mansion which has been faithully restored. It is unique in that it retains its original furnishings and professionally guided tours allow visitors to browse freely through the stately surroundings.
The 4 acre 18th century walled pleasure garden has been fully restored to its’ original splendour.It’s piece de resistance is its’ herbaceous border which is recorded in the Guinness Book of Records as the longest herbaceous border in Britain & Ireland.
The Famine Museum uses a combination of original documents and images from the Strokestown Park collection to explain the circumstances of the Great Irish Famine of the 1840′s. This collection boasts an extensive range of papers including actual letters written by the tenants on the Strokestown Estate at the time of the famine.
Full restaurant facilities are available where you can complement your visit from a wide ranging menu.