Brought to you by DiscoverIreland
Take some time for yourself to unwind in the tranquillity of the Hidden Heartlands this Summer
When we hear the words 'Summer adventure', many may picture a heart-stopping mountain bike session or a thrilling plunge into the Irish Sea. But the summer is also an ideal time to wind down, relax and reconnect with gentle, deliberate adventures in nature, or to wander peacefully through a museum.
With pristine waterways and unparalleled beauty spots, Leitrim and Roscommon in Ireland's Hidden Heartlands are home to a wide range of activities in tranquil settings. So this summer, take some time to slow down, learn something new and really enjoy your surroundings with these gentle, enriching adventures in Ireland's Hidden Heartlands.
Take a break from the hustle and bustle with a peaceful boat trip along the River Shannon. The boats from Carrick Day Boats are 100% electric and very easy to use. On top of that, they're super quiet, so you won't disturb any of the native fauna and flora as you cruise the River Shannon.
A leisurely, meandering boat trip will lead you through Jamestown, Cootehall and Leitrim Village, and you're free to moor up and explore any of these picturesque villages more deeply and grab some lunch from some of the great gastropubs and restaurants dotted along the way. Our favourite lunch spots in the region include The Barge Steakhouse in Leitrim Village and The Waterfront Restaurant in Cootehall.
For an easy adventure in a picturesque setting, look no further than Electric Bike Trails, in Co. Leitrim. First off, select your bike. Options include a standard 21 gear bike, or an electric bike, which will act as a helper throughout the more challenging parts of the route. For something a bit different, rent a tandem bike and enjoy the journey with a partner.
Cycle along the Shannon-Erne Blueway until you reach the woodlands of Lough Key Forest Park where you can enjoy a picnic. If you'd prefer a shorter, but equally scenic cycle, take the Shannon Erne Blueway route which runs from Leitrim Village to Kilclare.
Take a journey into Ireland's coal-mining past with this one-of-a-kind experience in Co. Roscommon. At the Arigna Mining Experience, which is situated near the Miner's Way and Historical Trail, visitors are invited to step inside the museum and awaken Roscommon's mining history. During the tour, your local guide, a former miner, will share exactly what life was like during these difficult times.
After the tour, enjoy a bite with a view in the museum's café. This café is fully stocked with refreshments and it overlooks the nearby Lough Allen, offering you a moment of tranquility in stunning surrounds.
For a day of relaxed, outdoor adventure, head to Lough Allen Adventure Centre in Co. Leitrim.
Enjoy a day on the water surrounded by the majestic mountains of Sliabh an Iarainn and Arigna. Take your pick from the wide array of water sports from the Lough Allen Adventure Centre. Join a kayaking or stand-up paddle boarding tour, and journey out to Drumshamazon for a 4km island expedition. You can also brave the elements by learning the three pillars of the Wim Hof method – breath work, cold therapy and mindset training – from one of Lough Allen's certified instructors.
While you're in the area, stroll through the picturesque Drumshambo, explore the wilderness of O'Connor's Island or simply relax by Lough Allen, taking in the region's natural beauty.
The village of Drumshambo in Co. Leitrim is home to the Acres Lake Floating Boardwalk, a blissful walkway like no other.
This 600m boardwalk allows you to literally float above the lake as you take in the tranquil beauty of your surroundings. Pause along the floating boardwalk to appreciate the view, or pack some goodies and enjoy them on the lake's shore. You can even sample some local baked goods by popping into Jinny's Bakery and Tearooms in Drumshambo and availing of their picnic basket service before venturing out to the floating boardwalk.
In partnership with DiscoverIreland.
So, what are you waiting for? Now is the perfect time to enjoy slow, deliberate adventures in Ireland's Hidden Heartlands.
The Leave No Trace principles help us make as little an impact as possible on the incredible Irish landscape as we explore the outdoors this summer and beyond. Keep outdoor areas safe, clean and free from waste/hazards, and help protect the natural environment. Love this place, leave no trace.
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