Sunday 15 September 2019

Hidden walks in Cooley and Gullion for Heritage Week

Heritage Week: August 17-25

A series of Heritage Walks will take place this month
A series of Heritage Walks will take place this month

A series of walks through the forests and hills of north Louth and South Armagh will give people an unique insight into the rich natural and cultural heritage of this ancient area.

Tour Guide and Storyteller, Venora Hovelt has developed several of these walks and welcomes anyone interested to join her in exploring secret places and sacred sites, history and biodiversity. Forest bathing and foraging is also part of one walk . This a an immersive slow walk through green spaces, where breathing slowly and concentrating on the beauty of nature can slow down the pace of life, and create an inner calmness. 'Yes we will hug trees, and connect with nature,' laughed Venora, 'yet by just slowing down, participants will feel a palpable respite from their day to day demands at the end'

Other walks have a historical slant and will suit those interested in battles and castles. Walkers travel through time in yet another, from the bronze age through the Famine to the present day. In all the walks the presence of Celtic or Christian spirituality is reflected, from St Brigid's Well, to the Mullaghbawn and Ballymakelliit Massrocks, to Kilnasaggrt Ancient Stone near Jonesboro.

Venora has developed these walks to showcase the hidden places of areas she knows well. 'I am passionate about hillwalking and nature and want to share the beauty of the hills, and their secrets, with likeminded people. Walking is also great for parents and children . It help them discover things together, from foraging,and the healing nature of plants, to the ancient history and legends, all right on our doorstep'. she ended.

The first of the walks, which offers walker the opportunity to try their hands at foraging and forest bathing takes place on Saturday August 17 from 11am to 2.30pm. Meeting at Jonesboro Old Church, Ravensdale, Verona will take walkers along woodland tracks. Afterwards lunch will be served in a quirky cottage with its own sustainable herb garden.

The Argus