Moore

Posts tagged with: 'Moore'

Ten Great Short Mayo Walks, Part One

I want to share with you 10 beautiful, but short, Mayo walks. These are places to go for a short, easy stroll and admire the surroundings. Bring the kids. I’ve chosen 10 places that you can easily reach in your car or, preferably, on your bike. No need for hiking boots to get to any of these spots, each of which is wonderfully representative of Mayo!

These are places where you can just wander around for a while at your leisure and take in the atmosphere and scenery. You might call it ‘meditate’ or ‘reflect’ on what is happening around you. Learn what Mayo is all about. Let me know what you think and where you feel should have been included in my list.

Here are the first five Mayo walks (in no particular order). Find the five remaining strolls here.

1 McMahon Park / Clare Lake, Claremorris
2 The Mall and Bridge Street, Westport
3 Céide Fields and Cliffs opposite, Ballycastle
4 Moore Hall, Carnacon
5 Belleek Wood, Ballina

 1. McMahon Park / Clare Lake, Claremorris

Mayo walks

McMahon Park, Claremorris

One of the nicest town parks in Mayo, the people of Claremorris are rightly proud of this wonderful space. The park is centred around Clare Lake and has beautiful walks, with cute little bridges over streams and fantastic flora, from native trees to lakeside reedbeds. Children and adults alike will enjoy the ducks and swans that have made the lake their home. As an added bonus, there’s a good children’s playground just outside. One gripe, however : The entrance to the park is not great and the playground really should be incorporated into the same space. Total walking time from car or bike, maybe 60 minutes (off-road).

 

 2. The Mall & Bridge Street, Westport

Mayo walks

Westport

Nowhere in Mayo is more lively than the main street (Bridge Street) in Westport, especially during the busy summer months. No street is prettier than The Mall, with the river flowing through its twin tree-lined avenues. Park your car or bike in any of the off-street carparks in town. Then go stand on the bridge for a while, take it all in and walk the lap of the Mall around the river, followed by the loop of Bridge St, Shop St and James St, before returning to the Mall. Then go find the craic in one of the many pubs on Bridge Street or James Street. Total walking time from car or bike, maybe 30 minutes (beware town traffic).

 

 3. Céide Fields and Cliffs, Ballycastle

Mayo walks

Cliffs at Ballycastle

The Céide Fields are the world’s oldest known farm system, at approx 6,000 years old. Here, stone walls encompassing a very large area have been discovered, lying intact beneath thousands of years of blanket bog. Straight across from the wonderful visitor centre and its carpark is a viewing platform out over the North Mayo cliffs. Stand here for a while, watch the seabirds and it will remain with you for the rest of your life. Indeed, go visit nearby Downpatrick Head, on the other side of Ballycastle afterwards. Total walking time from car or bike, including visiting Céide Fields, maybe 60 minutes (beware traffic on the road when going to view the cliffs).

  4. Moore Hall, Carnacon

Mayo walks

Moore Hall forest trail

In the county where the fight began, back in the 1870s, for the right to own the land one farmed, there are now almost no ‘big houses’ (landlord mansions) left standing. Moore Hall, though now a ruined shell, remains. Walk around here and think of the Irish National Land League, the campaign for land ownership for the tenant classes of the 19th Century and, ultimately, the struggle for Irish freedom. Better still, walk here at dusk during warm summer days and watch the Lesser Horseshoe Bats flying all around you. There is a fine carpark on the shores of Lough Carra, beyond Carnacon village. Total walking time from car or bike, over 60 minutes (off-road).

  5. Belleek Woods, Ballina

Mayo walks

Belleek Wood, Ballina

Belleek is the finest urban wooded area in Mayo. Situated on the northern side of Ballina town, the wood straddles the banks of the river Moy. It is a beautiful place, with lovely walks and river views. It is home to one of Mayo’s very few Red Squirrel populations and is a haven for the people of the north Mayo town. Park up your car and just lose yourself in here for a good hour. Total walking time from car or bike, over 60 minutes (off-road).

 

The second half of this Mayo walks list is presented in my next post here.

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Moore Hall and the Moores of Mayo

Down by the shores of Lough Carra, a marl lake in the south of Mayo, lies Moore Hall. Once the mansion of the local landlord, this fine three-storey over basement ruin is now home to one of Ireland’s most north-westerly populations of Lesser Horseshoe Bat.

Built in the 1790s, Moore Hall’s famous family included George Moore, John Moore, George Henry Moore and George Augustus Moore.

Moore Hall, Mayo

Beautiful Lough Carra by Moore Hall

George Moore was a wealthy wine and iodine merchant who owned a fleet of ships in Spain in the 18th Century. When he returned to Ireland, having sold his possessions in Alicante, he purchased 5,000 hectares (12,300 acres) of land along the shores of Lough Carra and had the great house constructed.

George’s son, John, became President of Connacht for a short period during the 1798 Rebellion. Along with many of his tenants, John Moore joined the French force that had landed at Killala in September of that year. Moore was eventually captured by crown forces and interred. The following year, 1799, John died in captivity in Waterford. In 1961, almost 200 years later, his grave was finally discovered and his remains were transported to Castlebar, where they were reburied in the Mall, with full military honours.

George Henry Moore was John’s nephew and is remembered for his good deeds during the Great Famine of 1845 – 1849. In that first year of famine, he ran a horse, Coronna, in the Chester Cup in England and betted on him winning, The horse obliged and George Henry won £ 17,000. Much of this he spent on famine amelioration efforts, including the chartering of ships to bring corn into Mayo.

George Augustus Moore, son of George Henry, was a writer who was involved in the Irish literary revival of the late 19th and early 20th Centuries and the founding of the Abbey Theatre. When Moore Hall was burned down in 1923, George Augustus received £ 7,000 in compensation.

Moore Hall forest trail

Beautiful forest trail at Moore Hall

Moore Hall is a lovely spot to visit for a short, family-friendly walk. Coillte, the current owner of what remains of the once huge estate, have put several forest tracks in place. You can view the house ruins from outside and traverse the tunnel at the back that would have once served as servants’ entrance.

Moore Hall – Learn More

Read more about Moore Hall and the Moore family here. Read more about the marl lake, Lough Carra, on Chris and Lynda Huxley’s outstanding website here.

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Family Fun Orienteering, Moore Hall

Orienteering in Mayo, Moore Hall, Tourism Pure Walking Holidays

Family Fun Orienteering, Moore Hall, Co. Mayo

Saturday, January 29th, will see our first Family Fun Orienteering event of 2011. Come along to Moore Hall, outside Carnacon, south Mayo, for a few hours outdoor fun with the children.

Meeting time is 2 pm at the car park. Bring warm clothes and decent footwear, plus your camera. If you are not familiar with Moore Hall, the ground is a mix of reasonable forest tracks, some smaller tracks and some rough trails through the trees. Small children in buggies are most welcome, although they won’t be able to go everywhere.

Please call or leave a comment here if you would like to come along. There is a charge of Euro 15 per family.

Tel. 094 – 9027797.  Mob. 086 – 8318748

Location :

Moore Hall is just outside Carnacon on the shores of Lough Carra in south Mayo. Driving south from Castlebar on the Ballinrobe road, there in a brown tourist sign to the left at Ballintubber, showing Ballintubber Abbey and Moore Hall on it.

At the Abbey, the road swings left 90 degrees. At the first cross roads, turn right. Drive on to Carnacon village, where you turn right again. At the next junction, turn right before the little bridge. Moore Hall car park is on the right, after 300 m.

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