On the Ballyliffin Road, Cnoc Na Coille Daire is one of Ireland’s few remaining ancient woodlands with oak, birch, rowan, hazel, willow and holly.
Little ancient woodland survives in Ireland. Ancient woodland means woodland that has been in existence since the Middle Ages.
An ancient woodland may have been felled, possibly many times. Felled woods regenerate mainly by sprouting from the cut stumps.
It was described as “a specimen of the primitive Irish forests” in 1867. There is written evidence that it was cut down in the early 1800s, but regrew from the stumps.
Cnoc Na Coille Daire is a proposed Natural Heritage Area (NHA). This affords it some limited protection.
Within the boundaries of the woodland lies a Mass Rock.