Ballycroy National Park Visitors Centre celebrates its sixth birthday

Ballycroy National Park Visitor Centre has announced its schedule of events for the summer of 2014. Now in its sixth year of greeting visitors and enthralling the public, the visitor centre, which is located in Ballycroy village, is a hive of activity. Open daily from 10am to 5.30pm, the team are delighted to offer this varied selection of activities which cater for all ages and abilities. All events are free of charge, but prior booking may be required for some. Contact on (098 ) 49888 or e-mail [email protected].

The ‘Plover Clubs’ are a great way to have fun and learn about nature. Part ecology and part arts and crafts, they are for primary school age children accompanied by an adult. They will take place every Tuesday and Thursday 2.30pm to 4pm during July and August. The clubs are filled on the day, on a first come, first served basis. Arrive early to avoid disappointment. The August plover clubs are: Deer, Clouds and Weather, Mayo’s Marine Life, Eco Art, Dinosaurs, Navigation Skills, and the Children of Lír. The dates are listed on the website www.ballycroynationalpark.ie

Events for the general public include family fun days, guided hikes, and informative talks. On Sunday July 27 to celebrate International Bog Day, a talk entitled The Story of Irish Bogs will take place from 4pm to 5pm at the Visitor Centre. On Sunday August 3 a National Park guide will lead a Ballycroy National Park River Walk (suitable for all ages from 10 years and older ). This leisurely stroll along the banks of the Tarsaghaunmore River will take place from 2pm to 4.30pm. Booking is required for this event and sturdy waterproof footwear is essential. On Wednesday August 6 National Park guides will lead a family hike in ‘Wild Nephin’ which takes place from 1pm to 4pm. Booking is required. Sturdy footwear is essential.

Last but not least, during both July and August a guided walk takes place twice every Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday at 12 noon and 2.30pm on the 1.5km looped 'Tóchar Daithí Bán' Nature Trail around the visitor centre. A National Park guide will assist in identifying important plants, animals, and geological features of the National Park. There are countless photographic opportunities here from this charming trail including; a magnificent 360 degree panoramic view to Achill Island, the Nephin Beg Mountain Range, the Owenduff Bog, and the Atlantic Ocean.

Follow the Wild Atlantic Way to experience an untouched pristine environment of unspoilt wilderness. This breathtaking coastal route from Mulranny to Ballycroy will intrigue and remain in your heart and mind long after you have returned home to the everyday world. There is a timeless air to the area around Ballycroy. Nature sets the pace in this beautiful northwest corner of Ireland. For more information log on to www.ballycroynationalpark.ie, call (098 ) 49888 or email [email protected].

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