GLENVEAGH NATIONAL PARK
To this day, Glenveagh remains a remote valley, and in olden times was probably uninhabited. Overlooking Lough Veagh, Glenveagh Castle stands atop a slight promontory jutting into the lake. Few buildings in Ireland can boast a fine setting. Made from rough – hewn granite, the Castle, a castellated mansion, was buik/plants/2889/ros-ban0wildlife-garden/nuserylt in the years 1870 – 1873 from designs by John Townsend Trench. The Castle may be visited only on guided tours, which take place regularly every day. A tea room in the castle is open every day from the start of February to the end of November and on weekends in December and January provides visitors with teas and delicious home baking. It’s beautiful gardens and wild setting around Lough Veagh host’s the largest red deer population in Europe and is home to Ireland’s only wild eagles. There are well sign-posted nature trails, walled gardens as well as a visitor centre, restaurant and tea room. For opening hours telephone 074 9137088.
ARDS FOREST PARK
Ards Forest Park is probably the most beautiful and certainly the most varied of Ireland’s Forest Parks. 480 hectares in extent it contains a large diversity of plant and wildlife forms. Sand beaches, rivers, viewing points, nature walks, picnic and play areas. Creeslough Tel: 0749121139. Opening Times: Apr to Sept 10.00am to 9.00pm, Oct to Mar 10.00am to 4.30pm.
Oakfield Park is one of Donegal’s best-loved attractions. With award-winning gardens & parklands it is the perfect place to spend a wonderful day out in Donegal. Spend hours exploring the grounds at your leisure: from walled gardens to ponds, lakes, a lakeside Nymphaeum, a new hedge maze, heritage trees and sculptures. Children can make a wish at Oakfield Park’s Fairie tree, while navigating their way through adventures on extensive walks and trails. The crowning glory is a 4.5km narrow gauge railway with a diesel and steam train operating passenger trips daily. This is a magical way to explore the park’s gardens as the train passes through flower meadows, beautiful woodlands, willow tunnels, oak circles, boardwalks, heritage trees, a wooden causeway and sparkling streams and lakes. After a day rambling around the parklands, you can refuel in Buffers Garden Restaurant, which is open daily and serves a delicious selection of home baked goodies, light bites and meals – all created with produce from the park’s gardens. Why not experience why Oakfield Park was voted one of the top five parks in the whole of Ireland in the Irish Times “Best Day Out.”