Situated along the banks of the river Moy just 1.5km from Ballina town centre, lies Belleek Woods, a 1000 acre woodland. The wood is one of the largest urban forests in Europe and is a fantastic amenity for locals and visitors alike.
After driving through or past the gate lodge, park up and enjoy the myriad of flora and fauna in this oasis of peace, which is lovingly maintained by Coillte and the local Belleek Woods Enhancement Committee. Belleek Woods is an area of great tranquillity, peace and beauty where you can enjoy the natural forest pathways running both through the forestry and along the River Moy. Check out the old SS Crete Boom, Ballina’s mysterious concrete ship, or explore the many trails through the forest, which will throw up a few big surprises, not least the majestic Belleek Castle itself.
You can see flowers and plants such as bluebells, irises, primroses, foxgloves, Snow in Summer, wild garlic and cuckoo pint. If you’re lucky you might spot but also spot foxes, hares, pine martins, herons, wagtails and robins among others!
Feed the ducks at the duck pond (make sure to give them healthy snacks like grapes, wheat, barley, oats, rice (cooked or uncooked) birdseed (any type or mix) or nuts, but not bread as it is bad for them!). The woods also boasts a squirrel sanctuary, where the rare Red Squirrel is getting a new lease of life in a protected area thanks to the efforts of the Belleek Woods Enhancement Committee.
Run, walk, cycle or mountain bike your way through this wonderful natural amenity.
The forest, with over 22,000 trees holds up to six miles of natural forest pathways, two of which are along the banks of the River Moy. Details of the looped walk are here.
The Belleek Forest Park Facebook page always has amazing images and live video footage of the various wildlife in the woods.