I truly feel that Enniscoe House and The North Mayo Heritage Centre & Gardens are a hidden Gem situated in the Heart of Mayo just outside Crossmolina town on the Lahardane Road.
We headed out on a dull wet typical Irish day, but once we got out of the car and started our walk around the Enniscoe loop we were transported to a land of flowers, paths and true natural beauty. Unlike many manicured walks this walk is a haven of nature left to flourish in its environment. The paths are intertwined around the tress and flowers and fauna of the grounds. I would advice walking these paths, the kids couldn’t bring their bikes as some paths are quiet narrow and if you’ve a buggy with you make sure you follow the correct path as you will struggle in one or two parts. If you just wanted to walk the main path to the magnificent Lough Conn then the kids would manage their bikes or scooters but honestly get their little legs walking and they’ll be so busy discovering all the nature that they wouldn’t notice that their walking.
The Walled gardens and Café are a treat, there is an admission fee into the gardens, for us it was a toss up; pay to see the gardens or go for a cuppa and a treat in the Secret Garden Café where you’ll get homemade fresh soups, cakes and much more. Can you guess which we went for . . .
The heritage centre isn’t a service I’ve used but I have heard many good things about it and would say it is a definite stop off if your researching your family tree. Also if you are looking for somewhere special to stay I would advise you consider the Enniscoe House situated in the grounds; deemed “the last Great House of North Mayo”, and dates back to the 1790’s. Enniscoe House and The North Mayo Heritage Centre & Gardens is a special place for you to experience with the family and friends, go for a day trip and have a cuppa or go and stay for a few nights and take in the entire Enniscoe experience.
The Break down
- Distance; 2.5 km
- Paths; narrow, wet and muddy
- Type; Woodland
- Walking boots/shoes advised
This walk is a hidden gem in the heart of Mayo a true explore and investigate kind of walk. The kids will have an adventure discovering the paths and walking through the tall tress and wild paths. The 4.8 km walk on wooded paths, gravel, boardwalk and forest is an exploration of a the West of Ireland’s charm that we all hear about but now a days find it difficult to find.
As we drove to the forest I was slightly skeptical that my husband had the directions correct, we turned off the main road continued on into the countryside the roads got windier narrower and when the grass started to appear done the center of the road the looks started. Hubby reassured me we we’re going the right way, once we passed through Moygownagh village the end was near litterly as the Forest walk is at the end of a long boggy road. The drive alone is an adventure but a good one I promise and it’s well sign posted.
Like many walks in Mayo what lies beneath is there to discover, as you walk the paths evidence of the early farmers from near 6000 years ago can be spotted throughout the forest. Keep an eye out for the woodland creatures and flowers and fauna along the way. Our favorite was the eye catching red mushrooms; red elf caps. Make sure to bring a picnic and once you get to the lake you’ll find benches and an amazing view to enjoy your lunch by. The lake is roughly half way and a good stop off for the kids to refuel. I wouldn’t advise bringing bikes or scooters for the kids just lots of drinks and snacks and they’ll have a ball.
There is a good map to get to the walk click here
The Break down
- Distance; 4,8 km
- Paths; rough, boarded and gravel
- Type; Woodland
- please note its important to stick to the paths on this walk as it is quiet boggy off path