Waterford City is the main economic driver for South East Ireland, and the greater Waterford Region has the largest catchment population of all the regional cities. Waterford is a connected city, and its compact size means shorter intra-urban distances and less dependency on cars. Its compact City Centre gives residents easier access to services, jobs, and social networking. 


Waterford, the liveable City

Waterford is a sustainable, dynamic and resourceful City where people seek to live, work, invest, experience and socialize, as a matter of choice. The City evolved and exists to support its citizens, and as Ireland’s oldest city we have drawn on the story of our past to help shape our future.

The City core is returning to its previous role as an environment in which to live, work and play, like the city used to be for hundreds of years. However, this ambition does not mark a nostalgic effort to recover what has been lost from Waterford’s past but for it to be re-imagined as a 15 minute vibrant city where all your needs including shopping, work, and amenities are all in close proximity.

Waterford is the centre of a green transformation connecting the City to its region by a network of 3 major greenways. The city centre is the terminus of these greenways, a ‘Walkable’ city at the heart of a sustainable network.  The public realm is the ‘living room’ of the City, shared by all and open to a dynamic range of uses including ease of mobility, events and creative displays.

In September 2021, Waterford was voted ‘Best Place to Live in Ireland‘ in the Irish Times feature.

“The more the judges explored this historic, down-to-earth and affordable city, in a stunning location on the southeast coast of Ireland, the more they concluded it is great place to call home”. The judges also commented that the City is “woven together by a suite of outstanding pedestrian-friendly public spaces, facilitating outdoor dining, pocket parks, sculpture, history, culture and even chess, delivering walkable, liveable and happy communities, day and night.”

Check out more about this award




Waterford's Towns and Villages

The Waterford City region has the best of all worlds. Choose urban living in Waterford City itself, Tramore or Dungarvan, or spread your wings to the county, where the smaller towns and villages offer great value living options in close proximity to the mountains and the sea, with access to local communities, leisure pursuits and most of all, space.

See below for a guide to locations in Waterford County..



Dungarvan is a picturesque coastal town in County Waterford with a charming centre that bustles with unique shops, award winning restaurants, and a year round program of festivals and events.

Dungarvan is Waterford’s second major urban area with a population of almost 10,000 and a primary catchment of 28,000.

The resident population is boosted by visitors to the Waterford region of approximately 500,000 annually.

Dungarvan is well connected and located on the N25, just 46km west of Waterford and 73km east of Cork City. The very popular Waterford Greenway, (voted Ireland’s Best Tourism Initiative 2018, and Ireland’s Favourite Adventure in 2019) running between Waterford City & Dungarvan has significantly increased footfall in the two years, and continues to do so. The number & variety of retail businesses in Dungarvan has increased dramatically since the ‘arrival’ of the Greenway.

A number of large multinational and indigenous employers are located in Dungarvan including GSK, Eurofins and Microbrush.

The Dungarvan Smarter Travel Initiative has resulted in €7.2m being invested in the town over recent years.

The town centre has ample car parking with over 1,900 public and private spaces available.



Dungarvan has a compact town centre focused on the traditional Grattan Square and is linked with the modern retail developments in Dungarvan Shopping Centre and Shaws Department Store.

Retail in Dungarvan town centre comprises a mix of local businesses and high street retailers such as New Look, Dorothy Perkins, Dunnes Stores, Carraig Donn and Easons.

Town-centre opportunity sites are available for immediate development.

Dungarvan has a mix of contemporary and heritage buildings available which are suitable for a range of uses

Companies are recognising the potential in Dungarvan too, as many newcomers such as Zevas Communications have set up hubs in the town, citing the abundance of talent, great connectivity and a strong local community as factors in their decision to locate here.




Tramore is a coastal town in County Waterford, steeped in history with sloping streets and sea views.

Tramore is one of Waterford’s fastest growing towns and the second largest town with a population of just over 10,000. In recent years, it has seen various new retail developments, to cater for both this growing residential population and significant tourist numbers attracted by the Blue Flag beaches and the number of local festivals.

Announced in late 2018, Tramore received €1.35 million from the Government’s Urban Development and Regeneration Fund (URDF). The money will go towards renewal of the town centre and will include a partial pedestrianisation of Main Street, which is currently under construction.

In recent years, it has become a trendy, cultural & very family friendly place to be, with independent boutiques & artisan food shops dotted along it’s main streets. The retail offering in Tramore includes a mix of charming and well established local businesses including The Lady’s SlipSeagull Bakery, Satina and Cahills and retailers such as SuperValu, Tesco, Lidl and Aldi.  The hospitality sector is well served by a number of casual dining restaurants and gastro pubs. The popular Waterford & Tramore Racecourse adds an additional buzz to the seaside town on race weekends.

Population of 50,000 living within 10km of Tramore (mainly in Waterford City).

Employers such as Nearform (developers of the Covid Tracing App) chose to locate in Tramore, servicing a global client base only minutes from Tramore’s amenities.

Modern and well-connected road network.

Free public and private car parking in the town centre.

Tourist attractions increasing visitor numbers including Lafcadio Hearn Japanese Gardens located in the town centre.



Dunmore East

Dunmore East is a popular tourist & fishing village in the East of the County, only 15 minutes drive from Waterford City. It is situated at the mouth of the busy Waterford Estuary. The harbour is one of the five designated National Fishery Harbours. In the summer months, it is popular with visiting yachts which have a designated pontoon. The village is also home to 3 hotels and many self-catering homes.

Tourism in Dunmore East is supported mainly by sailing and boating facilities, holiday homes, traditional pubs, a golf course and the Dunmore East Adventure Centre. The village is known for its many award-winning restaurants and is a busy location from March to October.

Dunmore East is a family friendly village. There are two primary schools in the village, and GAA, Soccer, Tennis, and Adventure sports playable locally. There is also a public playground, and Woods Walk and a new Cliff Walk, taking you from the Harbour to Portally Cove along with many other walking trails.

Moving east along the Waterford Estuary, you’ll also find charming villages such as Passage East, where the local ferry links Co. Waterford to Co. Wexford, and where the great kids playground and rugged beach mean there is no shortage of breathing space to enjoy.



Located around a magnificent beach, historic Ardmore is a small village with a big heart. Two hotels are located in the centre of the village, including the award winning Cliff House Hotel, set on a height overlooking the bay. Ardmore is also home to the popular White Horses Restaurant and many other bars and cafés. Ardmore’s offering also includes various galleries and gift shops, including Brigid Shelly Gallery.

The Ardmore Cliff Walk, a unique 4km walk with beautiful seascapes, gives residents a great way to unwind, taking in an old shipwreck, an old coastguard station, St. Declan’s Well, a 12th Century Cathedral and Ardmore’s Round Tower.

Watersports and active wellness are also available locally, with Ardmore Adventures located at the beach.

Ardmore’s natural beauty, its amenities and its proximity to Waterford City, East Cork and Dungarvan make it popular with career-minded professionals looking to relocate to a home by the sea.

Image supplied by Munster Vales. 



The town of Portlaw lies in the Comeragh Uplands, and is located 19km north-west of Waterford City. Originally the home of the Malcolmson family’s Cotton Mill, the town is now a hub of small to medium businesses. It is also the location of Agora Publishing Group, as well as many Engineering & Construction companies.

Just outside Portlaw is the Curraghmore Estate, the historic home of the 9th Marquis of Waterford. It is now the residence of Lord Waterford, and the house and 2500 acre formal gardens are open to the public by appointment.

Curraghmore Estate is also home to the famed All Together Now festival, a “weekend of freedom, inspiration and escapism through music, spoken word, comedy, theatre, debate, art, workshops, wellness, and everything in between from feasts of food to bespoke cocktails”.




Lismore & the Blackwater area

The heritage town of Lismore, in west County Waterford is famed for its 12th Century Castle, but there is so much more to the area for residents.

A new workplace initiative in West Waterford will breathe new life into the area while providing jobs into a number of local towns and villages.

Construction has begun on the West Waterford Smart Workplace Locations scheme, which will see new office developments in Lismore, and nearby locations in Cappoquin, Villierstown, and Tallow.

The €3 million plan is backed by the Irish Local Development Network, through the Waterford Leader Partnership, along with Waterford City and County Council and the philanthropic Tomar Trust, forming the Blackwater Valley Economic Development Zone.

According to CEO of the Waterford Leader Partnership, Jimmy Taaffe, 40 construction jobs will be created for the duration of the building project over the next year, with more than 90 full-time jobs expected in the 80 new office spaces when complete.

This smart working development and the network of offices within the four villages will create a highly-connected zone where people can work in an attractive environment for both employer and employee, closer to home.”

This smart-working hub can give residents more options for work/life balance. And the Blackwater Valley is ideally placed for you to engage in leisure-time. The nearby area is a wealth of natural amenities, including the Blackwater River and the Knockmealdown Mountains. Companies such as Blackwater Eco Tours, Blackwater Boating, Blackwater Eco-Park (including Glamping site) are all well-placed to provide various types of active wellness.

Villierstown also caters for interests such as cycling, fishing, shooting, bird watching, canoeing, water skiing or pleasure boating.

Image credit: Celtic Routes


Waterford Gaeltacht

This small coastal Gaeltacht, comprising An Rinn (Ring) and An Sean Phobal (Old Parish), overlooks Dungarvan Harbour and is approximately six miles from the town of Dungarvan. It is known for its welcoming people, its scenery, its seascape and above all its cultural vitality. The love of Irish music, song, dance and language is infectious in An Rinn.

An Rinn and An Sean Phobal are equidistant from both Waterford & Cork cities, giving residents access to a fast-paced career while living on the Coast. The nearest town of Dungarvan is 15 minutes drive away and means that the hustle and bustle of a busy town is on your doorstep, where you can access the Waterford Greenway, the Comeragh Mountains, award-winning food and great hospitality on offer in the town.

The area is one of great natural beauty, with places of interest in the area such as the Joan Clancy Art Gallery, and Solas na Mara, a health spa featuring massages and seaweed baths! Walks on the nearby Cunnigar beach are popular with locals and visitors alike, and it is great for birdwatching. The small fishing harbour of Helvick is also located here, where you can watch the fishermen at work.


Image credit: Celtic Routes




Copper Coast area

The Copper Coast extends along Waterford county’s coastline for 25km, and stretches from Fenor in the east, to Stradbally in the west and up to Dunhill in the north. The area was declared a European Geopark in 2001. In 2015 Waterford’s Copper Coast Geopark, became a UNESCO Global Geopark. The area is also home to the Copper Coast Visitors Centre.

The rugged landscape of this area features spectacular beaches and coves. The Copper Coast gets its name from the 19th Century copper mines that lie at its heart. There are numerous walking trails in the area, each featuring different aspects of the local landscape.

The villages of Fenor, Annestown, Bunmahon, Dunhill and Stradbally  are all desirable places to live offering residents a taste of coastal life, while also being close to the hustle and bustle of the larger towns and Waterford City. There are local schools in each village, as well as lots of options for watersports, climbing and hiking. Seaswimming is also popular year-round and is a great way to unwind after a day at work.


Image credit: Stephen Higgins Photography



How we help.
We can provide investment support and advice on doing business in Waterford. We facilitate introductions to economic development agencies, private industry, academia and government.