19th - 28th May

Ballycroy National Park is delighted to announce a series of FREE special events to celebrate Biodiversity Week 2017. 

We encourage all ages to be inspired by our county’s incredible biodiversity.  We are lucky to have many interesting and exciting species ranging from the smallest insects and rarest Irish plants to some of the largest animals alive such as the basking shark and whales in Co. Mayo, many of them within Ballycroy National Park.

Saturday 20th May @ 2.30-3.30pm (Meet at Reception)

Enjoy a leisurely stroll while learning about the biodiversity of Ballycroy National Park and our blanket bogs. Suitable for all ages.

Sunday 21st May @ 2.30-3.30pm (Meet at Claggan Mt. Coastal Trail-1/2 way between Mulranny and Ballycroy)

Join Park guides as they recount the history and biodiversity of Bellacragher Bay

Saturday 27th May @ 2.30-4.00pm (Meet at Reception)

Join Park guides searching for wildlife in Ballycroy National Park using your nature detective skills and special wildlife surveying equipment

NO BOOKING REQUIRED. Arrive early to avoid disappointment

NOTE: Adult must stay with child/children for the duration of the activities

Meet at Reception - Join Park guides searching for wildlife in Ballycroy National Park using your nature detective skills and special wildlife surveying equipment


Meet at Claggan Mt.Costal Trail-1/2 way between Mulranny and ballycroy - Join Park guides as they recount the history and biodiversity of Bellacragher Bay



Meet at Reception - Enjoy a leisurely stroll while learning about the biodiversity of Ballycroy National Park and our blanket bogs. Suitable for all ages. 

Astronomical Drawing 

Wed 8PM @ Visitor Centre

We are hosting a really interesting event on Wed 30th November here in the Visitor Centre. Artist Deirdre Kelleghan will present and demonstrate Astronomical Drawing.


Just go outside and draw it! 

A presentation / part demonstration about astronomical drawing.  Featuring Messier Objects , Comets , Milky Way and Meteor Shower drawing.  Techniques,  Materials,  Equipment, Software.


This will be a Dark Sky evening with a difference - Deirdre will talk about her work combining two passions - Astronomy and Art and how her educational talks and workshops have inspired young and old to draw what they see in the night sky.






See you there

Ireland’s First Ever Dark Sky Festival!! October Bank Holiday Weekend





photoOn the 5th of May 2016 the Ballycroy National Park & Wild Nephin in North-West Mayo became Ireland’s first Gold Tier International Dark Sky Park as recognised by the International Dark Sky Association.www.darksky.org

The Dark skies of the Nephin Wilderness in County Mayo are nationally recognized. Our darkness not only adds to the aesthetic qualities of the wilderness, but is important to the health of our wildlife. As most of the country is dealing daily with the effects of light pollution, the Dark Sky Festival aims to educate visitors about the importance of this park resource and inspire them to take action in their own counties.

We hope you join us in the idyllic coastal town of Newport fromOctober 28th-30th 2016 for the Mayo Dark Sky Festival and share your passion for the night sky and astronomy during this fun weekend.

Or come for our Extended weekend from the 27th to the 31st of October. This remote corner of Ireland with its Wild Atlantic coastline, Dark Skies, Majestic mountains and meandering rivers has an unparalleled splendour and natural beauty all its own. Free Parking in the School grounds.

Please complete your Registrationform HERE to help us to plan the event better and to speed up your registration to the various events.


The National Parks & Wildlife Service runs a series of Education Centres around the country. The Education Centres aim to raise awareness of the natural world and of conservation. Programmes are free of charge to schools, and to the general public. Each centre offers site specific programmes, but typically, they may offer Nature Awareness programmes to primary schools and ecology and geography fieldwork to secondary schools. They may also offer special events and tours for the public.


Ballycroy National Park Education Programme 2017

We are now taking bookings for 2017

We are open from May to the end of October to all interested schools and groups.

The Education Programme is FREE of charge.

Primary Schools

Bog Detective Challenge

Discover Primary Science Centre

Secondary Schools

Bog Ecology Studies for Junior & Leaving Certificate students. 

Outreach/Community Groups

We offer an outreach service to all interested schools and groups.


Staff at Ballycroy National Park Education Centre are happy to provide any assistance with information on aspects of nature conservation, the environment and Ballycroy National Park.

How to Book

Please note that our diary can fill up very quickly. So, please, if you wish to book a place, ring as early as possible. 

We only take bookings by phone (098 49888) and our service is free of charge.




RTE 1 Sean O'Roarke show with Marie Louise O'Donnell

Marie Louise O'Donnell joined us for Heritage Week. Listen to her talk about wildlife at night and Irelands new Dark Sky Park