OSI Discovery Map
Bounded by the Owenavorragh River on the north side and the canal on the seaward side to the east, Courtown Woodland dates back to pre-Famine times. At 25 hectares, it was once home to oak and ash trees. Acquired by the State in the late 1950’s it was planted with commercial timber. The mixed conifers – broadleaf plantings were largely of spruce with some ash although small stands of oak remain together with avenues of chestnut and lime trees.
The canal was constructed under a Famine relief scheme in 1847 and, as you choose your walk along the Lime Walk, Chestnut Walk or Broad Walk, you are walking in the shoes of previous Lords of Courtown and their visitors. Keep an eye out for remaining trees from the fifth Earl’s conifer collection, including Californian Redwood, Swamp Cypress, Japanese Cedar, Cedar of Lebanon and a number of pine, yew and True Cypresses. You will also notice common oak, ash, sycamore whilst, unfortunately, English Elm dating from the 1840s have mostly succumbed to Dutch Elm disease and are now suckering remnants of once, fine, pre-Famine trees.
A beautiful woodland area offering a cool green respite from the sunshine and sea in Courtown, these walks, with a tree lined avenue, offer a glimpse of the past and a reprieve from today’s busy schedule.
- The 2.5m high High Cross of Kilbride, the sole reminder of an early Christian church in the area
- Ballinatray Bridge, once amongst the tallest viaducts in Ireland
- A majestic Cedar of Lebanon on the river bank viewed from the Top Walk
- A yew tree planted in the 1870s, felled many years ago, continues to grow adjacent to the River Walk
- Late Spring’s spectacular white carpet of wild garlic blossom covering the woodland floor, followed closely by a delicate show of bluebells