Hidden Gems of Enniskillen: Off the Beaten Path Attractions

1 June 2024

Enniskillen is brimming with well-known landmarks and attractions, but some of its most charming features are found off the beaten path. Discover these hidden gems that offer unique experiences and insights into the town’s rich heritage and natural beauty.

1. Tully Castle

Where: Near Derrygonnelly, County Fermanagh

What to Expect: Tully Castle is a lesser-known 17th-century fortified house and bawn. The ruins are set in picturesque surroundings overlooking Lower Lough Erne. Visitors can explore the remains of the castle, wander through the beautifully restored gardens, and enjoy panoramic views of the lough. It’s a peaceful spot, perfect for a quiet picnic and some reflective time away from the crowds.

2. Headhunters Barber Shop & Railway Museum

Where: Darling Street, Enniskillen

What to Expect: Combining a working barber shop with an extensive railway museum, this quirky attraction offers a unique glimpse into Enniskillen’s history. The museum features a collection of railway memorabilia, including model trains, historic photographs, and artifacts. The friendly owners are passionate about local history and provide fascinating stories and insights during your visit.

3. Crom Estate

Where: Upper Lough Erne, County Fermanagh

What to Expect: Managed by the National Trust, Crom Estate is a stunning property featuring ancient woodlands, tranquil islands, and historic ruins. Explore the remains of the old Crom Castle, walk along the serene trails, and spot a variety of wildlife, including deer and rare butterflies. The estate also offers boat hire, allowing visitors to explore the lough and its islands at their own pace.

4. The Buttermarket

Where: Down Street, Enniskillen

What to Expect: The Buttermarket is a vibrant arts and crafts center housed in a restored 19th-century market square. It’s home to a variety of artisan shops, galleries, and studios where you can purchase unique handcrafted items, from jewelry and ceramics to textiles and paintings. The Buttermarket is also a venue for art exhibitions and cultural events, making it a must-visit for art enthusiasts.

5. Erne Gallery

Where: Wellington Road, Enniskillen

What to Expect: Erne Gallery is a hidden gem for art lovers, showcasing contemporary and traditional artworks by local and international artists. The gallery features a diverse range of paintings, sculptures, and mixed-media works. It’s a serene space to appreciate fine art and perhaps take home a unique piece as a souvenir of your visit.

6. Castle Archdale Country Park

Where: Lisnarick, County Fermanagh

What to Expect: While Castle Archdale Country Park is known for its outdoor activities, its historical significance is often overlooked. The park is home to the ruins of a 17th-century castle and served as a base for Catalina flying boats during World War II. Explore the heritage trail, visit the museum, and enjoy the peaceful woodland and lakeside walks.

7. Inishmacsaint Island

Where: Lower Lough Erne

What to Expect: Inishmacsaint Island is a small, tranquil island with a rich monastic history dating back to the 6th century. Accessible by boat, the island features the remains of an ancient church and graveyard. It’s a serene spot for those interested in early Christian history and offers beautiful views of the surrounding lough.

8. Monea Castle

Where: Near Derrygonnelly, County Fermanagh

What to Expect: Monea Castle is one of the best-preserved plantation castles in Ulster. Nestled in a rural setting, the castle features impressive ruins with large, round towers and fortified walls. It’s a fascinating site for history buffs and offers a quiet, picturesque spot for photography and exploration.

9. Florence Court Walled Garden

Where: Florence Court, Enniskillen

What to Expect: While Florence Court itself is a popular attraction, its walled garden is a hidden gem. This beautifully restored garden features a variety of plants, flowers, and vegetables, along with historic glasshouses. It’s a peaceful spot to enjoy the beauty of nature and learn about traditional gardening techniques.

10. Drumskinny Stone Circle

Where: Near Irvinestown, County Fermanagh

What to Expect: Drumskinny Stone Circle is a lesser-known prehistoric site featuring a stone circle, a cairn, and a stone alignment. Dating back to the Bronze Age, this ancient site offers a glimpse into the region’s early history. The peaceful setting provides a perfect spot for reflection and photography.

11. Ely Lodge Forest

Where: Near Enniskillen

What to Expect: Ely Lodge Forest is a beautiful woodland area offering several scenic walking trails. The forest is home to a variety of wildlife and features stunning viewpoints overlooking Lower Lough Erne. It’s an ideal spot for nature walks, birdwatching, and enjoying the tranquility of the great outdoors.

12. Topped Mountain

Where: Near Tempo, County Fermanagh

What to Expect: Topped Mountain offers a relatively easy hike with spectacular views from the summit. The trail takes you through beautiful countryside and offers panoramic views of the surrounding area. It’s a perfect spot for a short, invigorating hike and some breathtaking photos.

Exploring these hidden gems in and around Enniskillen will provide a richer, more nuanced experience of the region’s history, culture, and natural beauty. Whether you’re interested in ancient ruins, serene landscapes, or vibrant art scenes, Enniskillen’s off-the-beaten-path attractions offer something for every curious traveler.

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