Ireland's National Parks
Ireland has some of the most gorgeous scenery that you could find anywhere in the world from our stunning coastline to our breath taking mountain ranges to our lush green fields. We’ve also got 6 cracking National Parks that are a must visit too!
Wicklow Mountains & National Park
Situated south of Dublin and covering a whopping 20,483 hectares is Wicklow Mountains & National Park. It’s the largest of the 6 Irish National Parks and is the only one located in the east of Ireland. The park is a beautiful relaxation and recreational place for visitors and locals with over a million people visiting the park every year. One of the main attractions in Wicklow’s national park is the stunning Glendalough Valley with draws thousands of visitors annually. Its world famous Monastic Site, gorgeous lakes and valleys as well as the 132km Wicklow way walking track make this park a must see for visitors to the east of Ireland. http://www.wicklowmountainsnationalpark.ie/
The Burren National Park
Located in the south-eastern corner of the Burren, Co. Clare is the Burren National Park. The park spreads over 1,500 hectares in size. The word ‘Burren’ originates from the Irish word ‘Boireann’ meaning a rocky space which is really appropriate as there is little soil covering the area and the amount of Limestone Pavement on show. The park contains examples of all major habitats within the Burren including Limestone Pavement and Calcareous grasslands, lakes and cliffs, a must see for science and nature lovers. Within the Burren Nation Park lies part of ‘The Burren Way’, a 123km walking trail bringing you inland from Lahinch right through to the popular town of Lisdoonvarna, an ideal activity for lovers of the great outdoors and nature at its best. You’ll be able to see the spectacular county Clare scenery and attractions along the way. http://www.burrennationalpark.ie/
Killarney National Park
Killarney is one of the most popular visitor destinations in the country and it’s easy to see why. The town is surrounded by some of the most spectacular scenery that Ireland has to offer. The Killarney National Park boasts Irelands largest mountain range, the McGillacuddy reeks. With spectacular scenery to take in, a trip to Killarney would not be complete without visiting the national park. The focal point is of the park is Muckross House and Gardens, a 19th century mansion featuring furnishings and artefacts from the period and makes for an excellent activity day out. For nature lovers, the park is full of beautiful evergreen trees, oak woods and yew woods to name but of a few of the different types of trees you’ll find herehttp://www.killarneynationalpark.ie/
Glenveagh National Park
Glenveagh National Park is in a remote yet beautiful location in Donegal, roughly 20km outside of Gweedore, and full of pristine lakes, rugged mountains and gorgeous waterfalls. Glenveagh Castle is right in the centre of the park, on the shores of Lough Veagh. The castle itself dates back to the 19th century and was originally a hunting lodge. Beautiful gardens surround the castle and it’s home to a number of exotic plants which is different to the barren landscape on the outside. The walled Garden is a real masterpiece and a must see for visitors to the park. Admission to the park and gardens is free and is open all year round to visitors. http://www.glenveaghnationalpark.ie/
Connemara National Park
Situated in the west of Ireland, Connemara National Park in County Galway, covers almost 3,000 hectares of scenic mountains, bogs and grasslands. Connemara is known for having some of the most spectacular scenery that Ireland has to offer. Within the park you’ll find an abundance of mountain ranges, lakes and walking trails, all perfect for exploring. The Park is also home to the famous twelve bens mountain range and the iconic Kylemore Abbey which is a must see. If Hill Walking is your thing, then Diamond Hill located in the park will provide you with a worthy challenge where you’ll experience breath taking views over Connemara when you reach the top!
Ballycroy National Park
Established in 1998 and located in Co Mayo, Ballycroy National Park comprises of 11,000 hectares of Atlantic bog land, mountainous terrain and the beautiful Nephin Beg mountain range. To the west of the mountain range lies the Owenduff bog. This is one of the last remaining Atlantic blanket bog systems in Europe and is quite a scenic feature for science lovers. The Park is also home to some rare and unique animals such as White-fronted Geese, Red Grouse and Otters.
Ballycroy National Park is centrally located between the gorgeous Achill Island and the scenic town of Westport, both popular visitor destinations with lots of fun things to see and do including surfing, kayaking, and other water sports.