Planning your summer days out or family holidays? Fermanagh is the perfect spot for a great day out or short break. The Lakelands not only offer picturesque surroundings, Fermanagh is also filled with world class attractions and unique places to visit. We’ve put together a quick guide to Fermanagh’s must see attractions.
Located in the heart of the island town – Enniskillen Castle was built 600 years ago by the Gaelic Maguire. This historic site houses two museums; Fermanagh County Museum and the Inniskillings Museum, picnic areas and wonderful lakeside views. Both museums showcase the rich history and heritage of Fermanagh including Belleek Pottery, natural history displays and a wide range of weapons, uniforms, medals & lots more historic relics. The castle is the perfect stop off for a group day out or some family fun – with many living history events taking place throughout the year.
Marble Arch Caves Global Geopark
The Marble Arch Caves are one of Fermanagh’s most popular attractions and with the addition of the wider Global Geopark – a trip to the area is really worth while. The caves are among one of the finest show caves in Europe allowing visitor’s to explore a fascinating natural underground world by boat and on foot. The caves are open from mid March until the end of September with daily tours, there is also a visitor centre with restaurant, AV theatre and exhibitions on the wider Geopark area.
Belleek Pottery has become one of the most well known attractions in Ireland and is particularly popular with international visitor’s. Belleek Pottery is world famous for it’s parian china – visitors to the centre in Fermanagh can take a full pottery tour learn all about the history of Belleek. Whilst your in the picturesque village – take a trip up to the Thatch a cosy Coffee shop located on the main st. for some sweet treats!
There is something for all the family at this warm and welcoming 18th-century property, the former home of the Earls of Enniskillen. Florence Court enjoys a peaceful setting in west Fermanagh, with a dramatic backdrop of mountains and forests. There are glorious walks to enjoy, as well as fine vistas and play areas. There is even a charming walled garden. Every aspect of life in this classical Irish house, with its fine interiors and exquisite decoration, are brought to life on fascinating guided tours. Outside there are numerous places to explore, including a sawmill, ice house and thatched summer house.
Devenish Monastic Site was founded in the 6th century by Saint Molaise on one of Lough Erne’s many islands. During its history it has been raided by Vikings (837AD), burned (1157AD) and flourished (Middle Ages) as a parish church site and St Mary’s Augustine Priory. There are ruins from different time periods on site; the earliest being St Molaise house (small church) and the round tower which are 12th Century. A second church from the 13th Century, which was extended over time, was the lower church. From the 1 July until the end of the summer, a five day ferry service will operate from Thursday to Monday inclusive between Trory Point and Devenish Island. And for a totally unique experience why not try out the popular dinner cruise to Upper and Lower Lough Erne, Enniskillen on Saturday evenings operates May to September inclusive, departing from the Killyhevlin hotel at 6.15pm.
Set on the shores of upper Lough Erne, Crom Estate is one of Ireland’s most important nature reserve areas. Wild deer, pine marten and many rare species including butterflies can be found on the estate. The 2,000 acre demesne contains ancient woodland, tranquil islands, estate cottages and Old Crom Castle, all linked by the breathtakingly beautiful landscape. Visitor’s to the estate can enjoy the kingfisher cycle trail, explore the nature trails or take in the history and beauty of the castle and other buildings. On the estate itself there are historic buildings, holiday cottages and campsite, children’s play area and wildlife exhibition. Guided tours can be arranged.
The Buttermarket Craft Village
Comprising 17 Craft workshops, galleries and studios alongside Boston Quay Craft Shop, this 19th Century walled courtyard is the perfect place to spend an afternoon. Located just off the main street, visitor’s can pick up some wonderful handmade Fermanagh crafts including paintings, sculpture, pottery and lots of other unique gems. No visit to the Buttermarket is complete with out a stop off for a coffee and homemade treat in Rebecca’s Coffee shop before you leave.
Sheelin Lace Museum
The award winning Sheelin Lace Museum located in Bellnaleck just outside of Enniskillen houses approximately 700 exhibits showcasing a wide range of antique Irish lace. The majority of the collection dates back from the 19th Century. Visitor’s to the museum can also enjoy the treasure trove of goodies on sale in the adjoining shop where you can purchase vintage lace, veils and many other unique pieces. Pop into the coffee shop next door which has all sorts of delicious treats on offer and is a wonderful lunch spot – with an excellent outdoor seating area, great for when the sunshines!
Castle Archdale Country Park
Located on the shores of Lough Erne, this beautiful country park has numerous nature trails, woodland and lough side walks and cycle trails all waiting to be explored. Visitors to Castle Archdale can also wander through the butterfly garden, wildflower meadow and deer enclosure. And if you fancy something a bit more unique why not hire out a boat and explore the nearby islands or go pony trekking though this beautiful parkland. Make the most of your visit with a trip to the Archdale Centre, which is in the corner of the main courtyard. The centre houses various historic exhibitions including ‘Castle Archdale at War’.
Headhunters Railway Museum & Barber Shop
A trip to Headhunters Barber Shop & Railway Museum is like taking a remarkable journey into the past bringing the golden age of the railway vividly to life. Visitors start their journey of discovery at the reconstructed Railway Booking Office where the ticket collector invites you to step on board and enjoy the evocative nostalgia, social heritage and amazing artefacts associated with the railways which operated throughout Fermanagh and the border counties until their closure in 1957. Why not combine your visit with a unique opportunity to have your professionally styled in the most nostalgic surroundings.
Make a break of it
With so many unique visitor attractions why not make a break of it in the stunning lakelands. Fermanagh offer’s some excellent value breaks with hotel rooms starting from £49 per room. And if you fancy something a bit different why not stay in the stunning Rose Cottage, try out glamping at Drumhoney, or mix in a bit of adventure at Corralea Activity Centre.