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Family Green Holidays 2017-02-27T15:31:41+00:00

Experience the west of Ireland

with a small carbon footprint.

Make your holiday make a difference! A green family holiday at Slieve Aughty Centre promises comfort, fun and choice, all with a minimal carbon footprint by you and us. Be a part of a growing trend to care for and protect the planet we depend on without sacrificing quality.

A family green holiday begins with your booking. Do all your booking and payments online. Use our transfer information page to plan your arrival by train and ferry and avoid air travel. If this is not an option, use public transport once you arrive in Ireland. We can even have road worthy bicycles waiting for you upon your arrival for cycling enthusiasts.

Stay in The Three Towers Eco House or Family Eco-Lodge, both of which are eco friendly accommodation. Food at the centre is cooked fresh with organic ingredients grown on the farm or locally-sourced, but if you prefer a self-catering option this is possible from September to June.

Although the accommodation is lovely, we’ve got a fantastic menu of activities to get you out and about. These may include:

  • organic gardening
  • entertainment at the local pub
  • horse riding
  • guided/self guided walks
  • cycling trails*
    visit the Enchanted Forest
  • outdoor survival skills
  • recycled art
  • visit to a local attraction*

and more!

With choices for each day, there is something for everyone and lots of variety. Email us for more information and availability.

Latest News

Heating The Three Towers with Trees

 

Slieve Aughty Centre began 30 years ago with sustainability and nature-based experiences at the heart of everything we do.  In 2012 owner Esther Zyderlaan dismantled her original timber farmhouse to build The Three Towers Eco House and Organic Kitchen.  The building is a beautiful example of functional, comfortable sustainability in practice with lots of windows for natural lighting, low flow taps and toilets, efficient lighting features, puraflo peat filtration wastewater system, and eco-foam insulation.  Also in the plans was a biomass burning boiler for heating, which after 5 years of saving was finally installed in 2018.

The state of the art boiler burns timber and heats the 800 square metre guest house, eco-lodges, glamping cabin, conference space, and equestrian centre locker room, toilets and classroom.  The boiler itself was manufactured in Austria by HDG Bavaria GmbH and has an EU energy rating of A+.  It has an impressive capacity for 220L of fuel in the fuel chamber and is connected to 3 large insulated storage tanks with a total capacity for 900 litres of 90° water!

While the centre still maintains a traditional oil boiler as a back up, the goal with the HDG Euro 50 is to decrease dependency on fossil fuels by 80-100%.  The timber is purchased from Coillte, the largest private forestry company in Ireland, and is harvested Sitka Spruce, which grows quickly and is replanted after harvest, so is a renewable resource.  It is also grown right beside us, so we have nearly eliminated any shipping impacts.

Speaking of timber, the history of forestry in Ireland is really quite fascinating.  Ireland used to be one of the most heavily forested countries in all of Europe, mostly stands of oak and pine.  However, centuries of deforestation from agricultural clearing, industrial processes, and English interests resulted in only 1% of the total land area of the country covered in forests by the end of the 19th century.

Since entering the EU, incentives have been introduced to increase Ireland’s forested acreage.  Currently Ireland has a total forest cover of about 1,789,000 acres equivalent to 10.5% of the national area and 43% of this is in private ownership.  The goal is to increase forest cover in the country to 17% by 2030.

A visit to Slieve Aughty Centre offers you plenty of opportunity to explore more than 2,000 acres of Coillte forest, so you can see this renewable resource in action.  There are protected areas, harvested areas, and stands of forest in all stages of development throughout.  Every day you can visit a different part on horseback, on foot, or by mountain bike!

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