Address: Newcastle, Co. Wicklow
BirdWatch Ireland, Ireland’s largest conservation charity. Their 220 acre East Coast Nature Reserve at Newcastle, Co. Wicklow was opened in 2011 by the organisation’s patron, President of Ireland, Mary McAleese.
This former farmland been restored to a natural state, and is now home to a huge range of plants and animals. County Wicklow Partnership provided assistance in developing a boardwalk to the bird hides.
To enhance the visitor experience, there are a total of three bird hides built, along with nearly a kilometre of all weather boardwalk. The West hide, situated overlooking the western fields is increasingly visited by Greylag Geese, Lapwing and Godwits over the winter months. It is accessed via a dry stone path with boardwalk and pond dipping area on the approach. The third hide located further south with access to be opened from the coastal fields, mid site, via the wet Birch Forest and a 400 metre long, all weather, raised forest boardwalk: this is a firm favourite for dawn chorus and woodland walks that also combines views over the marsh and has a newly excavated pool: perfect for Little Grebes, Egrets and Kingfisher. Work currently underway in the forest which will eventually provide a summer loop walk of the whole property.
This amazing facility is unique to Ireland and attracts a large number of people to County Wicklow.