Aylmer Loop – Donadea Forest Park
Exploring the Donadea Forest with the Aylmer Loop Trail
Looking for a scenic adventure in Ireland? The Aylmer Loop Trail in Donadea Forest is a must-visit destination for hiking enthusiasts. This loop trail is a part of Coillte's Coillte Outdoors Programme, and it's a great way to explore the beautiful forested areas of Co. Kildare.
Starting from the first car park, follow the Sli na Slainte arrows along the forestry road. You'll pass through stunning Lime Tree Avenue and the 9/11 Memorial. As you make your way through the forest, you'll see a variety of flora and fauna that make this area their home.
The loop passes through a number of junctions and merges with the Nature Trail marked with yellow arrows and wooden Nature Point posts. You'll also find a stone memorial to the Firefighters of New York killed in the 9/11 disaster.
After exploring the forest, you'll emerge into a popular recreation area that contains a lake, cafe, and the ruins of Donadea Castle. The car park from which you started is only 200m from the castle.
The name Donadea derives from the Irish word ‘Domnach’ which signifies a church and also Sunday. One of the earliest references of the manor of Donadea was in connection with an inquisition taken in Cloncurry in 1312 – and in 1621, King James I created Gerald the first Baronet of Donadea!
Donadea Demesne was opened to the public in 1981, and the estate is currently under the care and maintenance of Coillte. With its fascinating history, beautiful surroundings, and peaceful atmosphere, Donadea Forest and the Aylmer Loop Trail are a must-visit destination for anyone visiting Ireland.