* Carrigaline, County Cork, Ireland *
A beautiful and charming forest recreation area in the heart of County Cork near Carrigaline, is a mixed woodland with a variety of mosses, trees, plants, and wildlife. It covers a 35 hectare area overlooking Cork Harbour to the east and northeast. To the south it also overlooks the mouth of the Owenabue River and the village of Crosshaven. Scenic views to the northwest capture Lough Beg. Atop Curraghbinny hill, which height is 74 meters above sea level rests Binne’s Cairn, the grave of Binne the Giant. “Corra” is the Irish term for hill and “binny” after the Gian “Binn”. Archaeologists date the cairne to the Bronze Age (approximately 1500 B.C.E.) and while no bones have been found within the grave believe it could have been used as such. There is a wide diversity of trees in the park, such as ash, birch, eucalyptus, sycamore, oak, European larch, beech, Scots pine, Silver Fir, and Norway spruce. The plant life is just as diverse with varieties such as brambles, bilberry, bracken, foxglove, wood sorrel, yarrow, ivy, and others abound along the hiking trails. Wildlife can be spied when the paths are quiet, including such critters as stoat, badger, fox, herons, bats, rabbit, owls, sea birds, deer, and hare. The woods have a few trails to choose from. In addition to the Giant’s Grave there are ruins of an old Curraghnbinny Tea house along the trail as well.