The Burren

A unique landscape

What is the Burren?

The Burren is a karst landscape where the limestone got exposed through human intervention. About 6,000 years ago, the first permanent settlers cleared the hills from trees for firewood and to grow crops. This led to erosion, and the fertile soil accumulated in the valley.

A new ecosystem evolved. Rare plants from the arctic, the Alps and Mediterranean started to grow here. It is an amazing sight when orchids from the Mediterranean, mountain avens from the arctic and gentian from the Alps grow together in one spot. 

The Burren is called the Fertile Rock. It might look bare when you are driving through it, but once you get out of the car and walk over the limestone pavement, you can see the great biodiversity and the beauty of the flowers everywhere. 

It is a region with the highest concentration of holy wells in Ireland. Many ancient monuments like ring forts, burial mounds and dolmens are found here. It is also a paradise for speleologists due to the huge amount of caves. 

Walking on the designated Burren trails through the valleys and over the hills is a favourite pastime of locals and tourists alike who love enjoying the views of the limestone hills and the sea. 

You can find out more about the Burren on the Burrenbeo website and the Burren & Cliffs of Moher Geopark website