The Sperrin Mountains

County Tyrone


The Sperrin Mountains

Irish Name: Tír Eoghain: "land of Eoghan"

County Town: Omagh

Nickname: The O'Neill county, The Red Hand County

GAA Colors: White and Red

Famous People with Tyrone roots: Hugh O'Neill, Philomena Begley, Tom Clarke, Paul Brady, Darren Clarke, Flann O'Brien, Brian Friel, Peter Canavan, Mickey Harte

Tyrone is one of the country's most beautiful inland counties. The largest county in the North it is overflowing with a variety of scenery from the majestic Sperrin Mountains that reach 2,000 foot to the gentle hills and river valleys of the plains. This sprawling hilly county is replete with ancient forests and unspoilt scenery but also boasts busy market towns like Omagh and Dungannon.

One of the main attractions located in the Omagh area is the Ulster-American Folk Park. Four miles north of Omagh, the Folk Park initially began by the donation of a cottage by the Mellon family in 1818. The park is an outdoor museum that tells the story of emigration in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Many of these emigrants went on to achieve great things and several of the signatories of the US Constitution were from Tyrone.

Dun Uladh, "Fort of Ulster", is the provincial headquarters of Comhaltas Ceoltoiri Eireann, and serves as a centre for those who wish to develop a deeper awareness of Ireland's ancient cultural heritage. From early in the year the centre plays host to Irish dance and music acts of all types.

For those who want to spend some time closer to nature there are nature reserves at Pomeroy and Boorin populated by a wide variety of animal life with nature trails and walks clearly marked. The beauty of the Sperrin Mountains make it a great place for hill-walking and exploring and the opportunity to enjoy one of Ireland's most attractive wildernesses is not one that should be missed.

Leisure activities are well catered for in Tyrone. Roach, Pike, Trout and Salmon are just a few of the varieties of fish available and the county boasts some of the finest golf courses in the country in particular at Omagh and Cookstown. Tyrone, or to be more exact the tranquil shore of Lough Neagh is one of the most popular destinations for bird watching in Britain or Ireland. The area supports thousands of wetland birds.

With leisure centres in most of the big towns to provide entertainment for all the family Tyrone caters for young and old, the newcomer and the returning visitor. A large county with an even larger heart Tyrone is a place you'll want to return to again and again.

Common Surnames in Tyrone: Loughran, McGurk, Grimes, Monahan, Heagney, Skeffington, O'Neill, Harte, Clarke, McCusker, Quinn, Mullan, Kelly, Donnelly, Gallagher, McKenna, Campbell and Hughes


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