Marlbank Nature Reserves
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Marlbank Nature Reserves, Enniskillen, County Fermanagh,
Mr Conaire McNeary
(028) 6862 1588
(028) 6862 1375
Appearing from an underground cave, the Cladagh River flows down a narrow, steeply-sided gorge.
The Marlbank Nature Reserves comprises of three sites which include the Marble Arch Forest Nature Reserve, Killykeeghan and Crossmurrin Nature Reserve and the Hanging Rock and Rossaa Nature Reserve.
Over a relatively small area, visitors can discover caves, steep gorges, cliffs and woodlands, as well as areas of extended grassland covered in wildflowers.
Sturdy footwear is recommended for all visitors.
Appearing from an underground cave, the Cladagh River flows down a narrow, steeply-sided gorge towards the Erne lowlands. This nature reserve takes its name from the polished limestone arch over the river which people used to think was marble. The arch was formed when a cave roof collapsed.
Visitors can take a walk beside the river as it tumbles over waterfalls and cascades along the gorge.
There is a visitor's centre at the Marble Arch Caves Global Geopark which is open from late March to September with toilets and a cafe available on site.
Killykeegan and Crossmurin
Set between the stunning and beautiful Cuilcagh Mountain and the Erne lowlands is Northern Ireland’s only area of limestone grassland. A few patches of hazel scrub remain dotted through the grassland because the area has been cleared for farming since the Stone Age. The scrub shelters delicate woodland flowers including wood sorrel and primroses.
There are toilets, a car park and information panels at Killykeegan cottage.
Hanging Rock and Rossaa
Overlooking Lower Lough MacNean is the Hanging Rock, a magnificent 50 metre high limestone cliff. Yew and juniper cling to its cliff face. At the foot of the cliff is one of the finest ash woodlands in the country.
In Rossaa Wood to the west, savour the sight of mature oak, beech, willow and elm and seek out the colourful yellow blooms of the Welsh poppy growing on the grassy slopes. There is limited parking in a small lay-by on the side of the road. There is also a short path available to where a river emerges from underground.