Renowned for its country hospitality, the small town of Irvinestown is one of the main hubs of County Fermanagh. It makes a good base for exploring the region’s historic manors and rural landscapes, located on the doorstep of one of Northern Ireland’s most impressive early monastic sites.
Things to do
Irvinestown’s main street is lined with charming restaurants, boutique shops and friendly pubs where you can soak up the town’s welcoming atmosphere. Then take the time to admire the grandiose architecture of the Sacred Heart Church whose foundation stone was blessed in 1910.
Follow the road that leads south to find the Victorian-era Necarne Castle, featuring an impressive facade. It also hosts the Necarne Castle Equestrian School where students come from across the world to learn how to handle horses.
To the west of the town is the Lower Lough Erne where the mythical “Lady of the Lake” is believed to glide over the waters. It’s here that the Devenish Island Monastic site is found, with its round tower dating to the 12th century. Originally established in the 6th century, admire the rebuilt Oratory of Saint Molaise that was raided by Vikings and burned.
Also on the lakeside, you’ll find the Castle Archdale Country Park, where walking and cycling trails meander through the woodlands. If you’re travelling with kids, be sure to visit the park’s red deer enclosure and butterfly garden, as well as the lovely wildflower meadows.
Irvinestown is connected to the surrounding towns and villages by public buses. The town itself is small and easy to explore on foot, with renting a bicycle an ideal option for those heading further afield.