Lower Lough Erne
Lower Lough Erne is a much more open expanse of water than the Upper Lough, with its 90-odd islands clustered mainly in the southern reaches. In early Christian times, when overland travel was difficult, Lough Erne was an important highway between the Donegal coast and inland Leitrim, and there are many ancient religious sites and other antiquities dotted around its shores.
Upper Lough Erne
About 80km long, Lough Erne is made up of two sections: the Upper Lough to the south of Enniskillen, and the Lower Lough to the north. The two are connected by the River Erne, which begins its journey in County Cavan and meets the sea at Donegal Bay west of Ballyshannon.
Lough Navar Forest Park
This forest park lies at the western end of Lower Lough Erne, where the Cliffs of Magho – a 250m-high and 9km-long limestone escarpment – rise above a fringe of native woodland on the south shore. An 11km scenic drive through the park leads to the Magho Viewpoint – the panorama from the clifftop here is one of the finest in Ireland, especially before sunset.
Boa Island, at the northern end of Lower Lough Erne, is connected to the mainland at both ends – the main A47 road runs along its length. Spooky, moss-grown Caldragh graveyard, towards the western end of the island, contains the famous Janus Stone. Perhaps 2000 years old, this pagan figure is carved with two grotesque human heads, back to back.
The churchyard at Killadeas, 11km north of Enniskillen on the B82, contains several unusual carved stones. Most famous is the 1m-high Bishop's Stone, dating from between the 7th and 9th centuries, which has a Celtic head reminiscent of the White Island figures carved on its narrow western edge, and an engraving of a bishop with bell and crosier on the side.