Take a guided tour and let the team at Glengowla Mines and Family Farm Experience in Oughterard, County Galway, lead you on a journey of discovery of how lead and silver were mined here during the 1800s. Explore caverns of marble studded with lead and silver. Learn about the working conditions of the miners before the mines closed in 1865. Afterwards, pan for gold and gems at our gold panning station and keep any gems you find.
View sheep herding demonstrations. Farm owner Keith has trained his intelligent sheepdogs, and herded sheep for years. Keith will explain the commands he uses and his training techniques. There is a fully covered viewing area, so occasional Irish weather won't hamper the experience.
Take part in the true Irish experience of traditional turf cutting. Learn how peat was formed thousands of years ago, how the turf was cut out of the bog using a Sleán, and the technique of stacking the turf and bringing it home, known as ‘Saving the Turf’. Hold the Sleán and cut a sod yourself.
The Sheep Dog Herding Demonstration and Turf Cutting Demonstration must be booked in advance.
Enjoy a leisurely stroll through the farm along part of the old, abandoned Galway - Clifden railway line and discover some of the local flora and fauna. Make a day of it and bring your own picnic.
- Visit an underground mine.
- Pan for gold at the gold panning station.
- Learn how peat is formed, cut, stacked, and dried in a traditional turf cutting demonstration.
- See a working seismograph, part of the national seismic network.
- Meet friendly sheep dogs and marvel at how man and dog work together in the age-old skill of herding sheep.
- Stroll the farm and enjoy the scenery, flora and fauna that Connemara is famous for.
Take time to explore the farm grounds. You will find beautiful spots for a picnic.
Take a moment when on the mine tour, and listen to the dripping water. Let your “miners’ breath” set the scene and transport you back to the 1800s, when the miners worked here.