Discovering the Enchanting Beauty of Tollymore Forest Park
Tollymore Forest Park is a rare treat for the student of garden follies. The park boasts a barn dressed up to look like a church, stone cones atop gate piers, and gothic-style gate arches - all showing the influence of the highly individualistic designer, Thomas Wright of Durham. A walk along the Shimna river is marked by many curiosities, natural and artificial, such as rocky outcrops, bridges, grottos, and caves.
The park is also a paradise for tree lovers, with experimental forest plots featuring exotic trees such as monkey puzzle and eucalyptus, as well as tall giant redwoods and Monterey pines. Seek out the oldest tree in any arboretum in Ireland, the slow-growing spruce Picea abies 'Clanbrassiliana,' which originated nearby in about 1750. The oak wood from Tollymore was the preferred material for the interiors of the White Star liners, including the Titanic, which was built in Belfast.
The magnificent avenue of Deodar cedars is a striking feature of the entrance to this romantic forest park in the foothills of the Mourne Mountains. The park's natural beauty and artificial curiosities offer a unique experience that visitors of all ages will enjoy.
Tollymore Forest Park is open all year round, with seasonal changes offering different experiences throughout the year. Visitors can enjoy walking, picnicking, camping, and mountain biking in the park. Guided tours are also available for those interested in learning more about the park's history and natural beauty.
In conclusion, Tollymore Forest Park is a must-visit destination for garden folly enthusiasts, tree lovers, and anyone looking to experience the natural beauty of Northern Ireland. The park's unique features, including the experimental forest plots, oldest tree in any arboretum in Ireland, and Deodar cedars, offer a one-of-a-kind experience that visitors of all ages will enjoy. Don't miss out on the opportunity to explore this enchanting forest park in the foothills of the Mourne Mountains.