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The Burren 2020 (Greentours)

Ribboned with cracks and crevices, the limestones of County Clare in the area known as The Burren produce one of Europe’s most distinctive landscapes. For a few short weeks in late spring, The Burren produces a fabulous selection of wildflowers sure to delight botanical enthusiasts.
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Why visit?

The flora

The Burren is known for its unusual and beautiful flora – over 70% of Ireland’s 900 species are found here. It is famous for its orchids with 24 out of Ireland’s 28 species found here. We’ll see the spectacle of massed Early Purple Orchids in an unusual mix of purple, pink and white. Dactylorhiza come in a bewildering variety, including the almost-ivory D. okellyi (unique to Ireland) and there are coloured varieties of Early Marsh Orhid: purple-lined coccinea and salmon pink cruenta. 

What fascinates most about the Burren and its flowers is the juxtaposition of Arctic-Alpine with Mediterranean plants and these in turn rub shoulders with the Lusitanian. (The latter are plants from the warm and wet Atlantic fringes.)

The landscape

Formed millions of years ago beneath long-forgotten tropical seas, the unique landscape means farming has to be hardy and unique. Although the rock may appear bare and barren, the agricultural tradition is strong, dating back almost 6,000 years. Countless livestock graze the hills in winter, clearing the ground of tough grasses and making way for a wonderfully diverse and lovely spring flora.

Look closer at the initially completely wild-looking landscapes and you’ll see plenty of evidence of man’s long stay in this terrain. There are over eighty tombs dating from the Mesolithic to the Iron Age scattered across the limestone, the most famous Poulnabrone, a gravity-defying portal dolmen that has perched here for over 5,800 years, guarding the remains of 22 people buried over the course of six centuries.

More info

More information, including accommodation details, can be found on the Greentours website.


To secure your place, download a Greentours booking form.

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