Galty Castle Forest Recreation Area is located on the southern slopes of the Galty Mountains, in County Limerick. The area was once the site of Galty Castle built in 1740 which, with later additions, became the home of the Kingston family. The last owners were the Buckleys of Galty Castle Estate. The Castle was demolished around 1940 and the stone was then used to build the local church in Glanworth. All that remains as evidence of the estate are some red sandstone stables and an outline of the tennis courts.
The woodland itself, consists of a diverse species block of approximately 450 hectares around the car park. Broadleaves include; oak, ash, beech, sycamore, birch, chestnut, rowan, whitebeam and holly. Conifers include; Sitka spruce, Norway spruce, Scot’s Pine, Western hemlock and Grand fir. Because of the woodlands special and semi-secluded location on the Galty’s there is a rich assortment of wildlife here; deer, fox, badger, stoat, mink, red squirrel, hare and rabbit. Pheasant, duck, kestrel, barn owl, kingfishers and many species of bat are also present.
For walkers, the Attychraan National Looped Walk starts and finishes at the car park. This is a really scenic trail that offers magnificent views of the mountains, farmlands and rolling countryside, as well as opportunities to walk through some impressive stands of trees. There is a special section beside the Attychrann river that would lift any spirit.
This amenity area is well worth the effort to visit.