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Lough Derg's beautiful scenery


The fascinating scenery of Lough Derg with the exceptional richness of its fauna and many smaller rivers, hills and mountains always brings a new perspective to enjoy. There are numerous hidden ruins, churchyards with Celtic crosses, beautiful trails right through the middle of unspoiled nature, ancient quarries and of course a wealth of wildlife.

Lough Derg is navigable over its total length of nearly 40 km from Portumna at its northern tip to Killaloe and Ballina in the south.

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Ideally, this area should be enjoyed from the shores of the lake, the surrounding hills and mountains and also from the lake itself for the best of all possible worlds.

Lough Derg's Fauna

Most of Ireland’s larger wild animals are to be found around Lough Derg and in its surrounding countryside. Some like the Rabbit, Hare, Grey Squirrel, Stoat and Mink are active during the day. Others like the Hedgehog, Badger and Otter prefer the night. The Fox is often seen at dawn and dusk, Red Deer re-occur in large numbers in Portumna Forest Park and in the woody shores of western Lough Derg the Pine Marten is growing in numbers.

The Shannon system is unequalled in Europe for the quality of its bird life. Lough Derg shares this distinction and has many permanent residents in its habitats. The Coot, Moorhen, Grebe, Duck, Heron, Gull, Kingfisher, Cormorant, Bunting and Mute Swan are among Lough Derg’s permanent residents.

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At the North end of the lake in the wet grasslands of the Shannon Callows and Brosnaland many wild birds and waders are frequent winter visitors. The nature reserve at Portumna and also other special areas of conservation around the lake provide undisturbed feeding and breeding habitats for these creatures and many opportunities to quietly observe them in their natural habitats.