Welcome to Clara Bog Nature Reserve
“In morning’s youth I look across this land
so fresh and quiet
and all my senses full enjoy
this beauty bogland sight.”
– On Clara Bog by Drigin Gaffey
Clara Bog is the finest remaining example of a raised bog in Ireland today. Raised bogs once covered 310,000 hectares in Ireland but today just 7% remains intact. This forms over 50% of the remaining area of uncut raised bog in North West Europe.
Clara Bog Nature Reserve is 464 hectares of raised bog with evident lag and soak systems. The nature reserve is home to many protected wildlife species. The installation of a 1km-looped timber boardwalk with interpretive panels at Clara Bog has provided for local recreation and tourism. The site is protected under a number of national and international designations including National Nature Reserve, a Special Area of Conservation, Ramsar Wetland Site, Natura 2000 site, and Natural Heritage Area. Clara Bog Nature Reserve and Visitor Centre are managed by National Parks and Wildlife Service of the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht.
The award-winning Clara Bog Visitor Centre offers visitors a fascinating insight into the bog. The interactive interpretive area covers themes such as: the development of peatlands; biodiversity of raised bogs; the history and archaeology associated with raised bogs; and some unique facts about Clara Bog. The multi-purpose Audio Visual room can accommodate groups of 50 and is available for meetings, talks, workshops and courses to local/environmental groups. The Visitor Centre offers walks, talks, workshops and other educational activities for adults and children.
Open since 2010 the Visitor Centre is co-located with Clara Library, on the Ballycumber Road. We are 1.5 km from the nature reserve which is located on the Clara-Rahan Road. Visitors can park at the Centre and walk to the nature reserve, alternatively there is an area for cars at the nature reserve. The centre is just a 5 minute walk from Clara train station and just 10 minutes from the M6 motorway. Please note that opening times at the Centre may change, so it is advisable to check ahead of your visit. The nature reserve boardwalk trail is open and accessible all year round.