This time of year provides a great opportunity to get out in the fresh air and to stretch those limbs as we begin another year! Here in Tipperary and also in the adjoining counties of Clare, Offaly and Galway we have some great looped walks suitable for all ages. There is the wonderful Keeper Hill walk just outside Nenagh with amazing views of Lower Ormond and Lough Derg, The Devils Bit near Templemore with it ancient story of how it gained its unusual shape as a result of the Devil biting a piece off the hill in anger and then spitting it out (he didn’t like the taste, apparently!) The rejected piece then landed in South Tipperary became the Rock of Cashel!
There is also the leisurely Sli Eala which links Nenagh town and Dromineer and offers some rolling farmland vistas as you stroll along the banks of the Nenagh River and then a very family friendly circular walk in Garrykennedy that is part of the Lough Derg Way.
All these walks are suitable for those with moderate experience and can be taken at an easy pace.
See the attached downloadable guides for more walks, details, distances and maps. All produced courtesy of Tipperary Tourism and Tipperary County Council
Last weekend the Irish Times Weekend magazine published an article on the 100 Best Places to Stay in Ireland. We are thrilled to be included in this prestigious listing in Ireland’s most influential newspaper! We have worked at our business for so many years with the intention that we provide a ‘real rural experience’ for our guests. Travel writer Catherine Mack described Fuchsia Lane Farm as offering ‘the best farm fåilte (Irish for welcome) that you could get’. We won’t argue against that! Inclusion in this list has given us a fantastic boost and acknowledgment for our efforts.
We don’t strive to have a huge business here but rather one that allows us to share our place with others who value space, peace, closeness to nature and the chance to be ‘with themselves’. For us it’s a business that allows us to create a life where we can work where we live, and work at what we love.
We hope our guests enjoy it too!
The full article is available here and below is a screen shot of the page from the magazine
Over recent years we have all become more connected to the internet and being without our emails and social media accounts can be a big challenge for many of us. As hosts providing self catering cottages to the holiday rental market the first question guests used to ask us on arrival ranged from ‘where is the best place to eat’ to ‘where can we buy local produce?’ Over the last couple of years this has changed to (yes, you guessed it!): ‘Have you Wifi?’
We did our best to provide wifi by having it in the shared areas however this was not good enough. Snapchatting, checking out FB or planning ones itinerary for the next great day at Fuchsia Lane Farm required something better! So we decided to do something about it and in true rural fashion we decided to learn about this ourselves. We researched routers, cellular networks, Cat6 cables, repeater routers, crimping, etc etc. After making some mistakes, learning from them and remaining patient as we figured out DCHP settings, IP addresses and a whole load of other learning such as how to ‘fish’ cables up through ceilings, down walls, under cupboards and God knows where else, we can now say that each cottage has its own wifi!
We hope it makes for a more enjoyable stay here, it will be useful in making contact with your loved ones at home, sharing pictures and finding out what is on in the area and beyond. However, don’t forget that we still welcome old fashioned conversations and the knock on our door if someone needs some assistance and a real person to talk to!
On Thursday last Fuchsia Lane Farm was awarded a gold award at the Irish Responsible Tourism Awards. The awards are a response to demand from the Irish trade for a new type of awards showcasing the best in Irish responsible tourism. The 2016 Irish Responsible Tourism Awards aim to inspire replication, to excite media interest, to encourage competition and celebration from across the tourism industry on the island of Ireland.
Fuchsia Lane Farm was nominated in the category ‘Best for Local Sourcing’ and this award is in acknowledgement of our efforts, over the years, to encourage our guests to support local artisan food producers and other businesses while holidaying with us. We have always worked on the principle that a central element of Rural Tourism was the potential and benefit that can accrue to local economies. As one of the judges commented: ‘Niall and Inez have been practicing Responsible Tourism since before the term was invented!’
Kevin Griffin (DIT tourism lecturer and former-EDEN awards judge)
Paddy Mathews (Fáilte Ireland)
Annabel Fitzgerald (Irish Water & formerly Coastal Programmes Manager An Taisce)
Mark Henry (Central Marketing Director, Tourism Ireland)
Cyril McAree (Managing Director, Hotel & Restaurant Times)
Fáilte Ireland’s Head Investment & Innovation, Paddy Matthews said, “A more environmentally conscious and community-centred approach to developing tourism in Ireland is becoming more and more mainstream… and so it should. It results in more genuine and authentic experiences for all our visitors.”
Our local arts festival is organised by a small voluntary committee who work enthusiastically throughout the year to make each festival a fun event that appeals to all ages and because of this commitment and vision, it has become an established event on the Irish arts festivals’ calendar.
As part of the 2016 festival the team is delighted to be bringing Noni Stapelton’s play “Charolais”, a dark comedy about love, longing and one woman’s intense rivalry with a Charolais heifer to Terryglass Village Hall and to also welcome Rebecca Storm as she returns to the church this year for our Friday night Gala Concert. With fireworks at the quay, over 70 participative workshops, street entertainment with magician and ventriloquist Jack Wise, stunning visual arts and the Family Fun Day on the Sunday, the festival is a wonderful celebration of the arts, creativity, talent, inspiration and enjoyment and has something to offer all ages and interests.
Please note that there is on-line booking for most events and tickets do sell out fast, so don’t forget to book early to avoid disappointment.
Our local village, Terryglass, has just won this amazing award as Irelands Best Kept Village. The competition, open to all towns and villages on the island of Ireland is a much sought after prize. We are delighted that our local community has received this accolade after years of hard work by dedicated volunteers.
Don’t just take my word for it, come and visit!
The Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government and the Northern Ireland Amenity Council initiated Ireland’s Best Kept Towns competition in 1995 to help raise the profile of the republic’s Tidy Towns competition and the north’s Best Kept competitions.
All entrants were marked on a number of factors including cleanliness, the outward appearance of buildings, the presentation of roads and public facilities, and the natural environment.
Waterways Ireland, Canoeing Ireland and the Canoe Association of Northern Ireland have joined forces with outdoor centres and canoeing clubs across the island to create the Blueway 10k ‘learn to paddle’ programme for people seeking a new adventure in the outdoors.
Blueways are multi-activity trails running on and alongside water, with cycling and walking complementing the paddling trails. By the end of 2016 there will be over 200km of trails on the Shannon and Shannon-Erne waterways managed by Waterways Ireland.
A 12 week canoe training programme is available in 30 centres nationwide starting on 28th May culminating in a 10k paddle in 7 key locations across the inland waterways. This no nonsense workout that will allow people to turn up in regular workout clothes, put on a buoyancy aid, grab a boat and paddle, and go for short intensive work out.
Although the programme is written for kayaks, the Blueway 10K can be completed in any paddlesports craft including sit on tops, open canoes and stand up paddle boards.
The training partners delivering the programme are clubs, outdoor recreational centres all run by experienced paddlers, check them out online or follow the links on the website to get more information.
Canoeing is an aerobic sport which can be practised either in a club outdoor recreation centres to develop a range of skills which can be used for fitness or competition with sprints, white water, marathon & canoe polo activity or for recreation, short and long-distance self-guided or guided touring and adventure. With a range of options this wide there are loads of ways to find the paddling experience that matches a person’s fitness and recreational needs.
Let your children improve their Tennis Skills this Easter!
Here at Fuchsia Lane Farm we are just 25 mins drive from Nenagh Lawn Tennis Club. This club has a long tradition of social and competitive tennis and its origins can be traced to the early 1900s where play on grass courts was the norm. The club has a strong family and social tradition catering for all ages and standards, a thriving Junior Program right through to the Adult grading system.
This Easter from Mon 21st March through to Friday 25th children can enjoy activities, games, fun and make new friends while they improve their tennis skills. It also affords parents an opportunity to enjoy a nice lunch, shopping or sightseeing while the little ones are busy!
For more information visit http://www.nenaghltc.ie/coaching/juniors/junior-coaching/
Portumna is a small town in the heart of rural Galway, just 10 mins drive from Fuchsia Lane Farm. The name Portumna comes from the Irish word Port Omna, meaning the landing place of the oak tree. So not surprisingly, perched on the edge of the quaint little town is a magnificent 450 hectacres of coniferous woodland of Scots Pine and Norway spruce. Portumna Forest Park is also home to a whole host of animals including Fallow deer and the red Squirrel. Every June, the agility of the wild animals in their natural habitat is mimicked by the ‘best of the best’ of distance runners from all over Ireland. In recent years participants have come from all over the world in their quest to find the ultimate Ultra marathon.
The countryside is beginning to wake up from the winter hibernations! Its time for a self catering break! Buds are starting to appear, snowdrops and daffodils are very early this season and on some mornings one can hear the chirping of bird life as they sense that the New Year is dawning.
Its a great time to get away and shake off the winter cobwebs and enjoy a cosy cottage, good food, exercise and a stretch of the legs along quiet country lanes or on one of the many walking trails in Tipperary. Across on the other side of the Shannon, our neighbours in Portumna are immensely proud of Portumna Forest Park with its many walks and trails.
Portumna Forest Park has a selection of 4 trails to choose from which include the Rinmaher Walking Trail, the Woodland Walking Trail, the Forest Friendly Walking Trail, and the Bonaveen Walking Trail. The 4 looped trails in the park range from a multi-access trail suitable for all visitors of approx 1km in length, to a long multi-use trail of over 10kms for walkers and cyclists. Pack a picnic and spend a day in this majestic forest park which covers 450 hectares and dominated by a canopy of coniferous woodland. The Bonaveen Walking Trail brings you right to the shores of Lough Derg with excellent viewing points. The forest park has parking, toilet and picnic facilities.