Doagh Famine Village is a unique outdoor museum in Inishowen, Co. Donegal, that allows visitors to step back into the time of the Great Potato Famine and experience the history of rural Ireland from the 1840s to the modern era.
The village, which is open from March until October, includes several authentic Irish thatched cottages furnished with period artifacts. These cottages were still inhabited up until 1983.
Owner Pat Doherty converted his abandoned family homestead into the museum in 1997. Today it is one of the top attractions in the northwest of Ireland.
At the village attractions include a traditional Irish wake, an exhibition about the Irish traveling community, an Orange Hall, a Presbyterian meeting house, a Catholic Mass Rock and Hedge School, and even haunted rooms!
Guides dressed in authentic historic costumes are on hand to answer any questions.
During the holiday season, the village is transformed into Santa’s Island, where children can meet Santa and his elves.
Throughout the year, visitors can also take a 45 minute informative tour that tells the story of how Irish families and communities have survived challenging times from the famine to present-day's economic difficulties.
After the tour, travel to nearby Glenevin Waterfall, which stands over 40ft tall. Visitors can take an easy scenic walk up Glenevin Valley to the waterfall.
According to DiscoverIreland.ie, the basin at the foot of the waterfall is called Pohl-an-eas, named for the foam which lies on the surface of the pool, and translated as “ferment pool.”
Also within a short distance of Dogah is beautiful Glenveagh National Park, which encompasses around 16,000 hectares in the heart of the Derryveagh Mountains and is the second largest national park in Ireland.
Visitors to the area may also want to stop at the Inishowen Maritime Museum & Planetarium, which is located at the Old Coast Guard station overlooking Greencastle Harbour on the banks of Lough Foyle. The museum has an extensive collection of maritime artifacts, exhibitions and memorabilia. The planetarium features five shows a day. Amenities include a nautical gifts and fishing tackle shop and a tea room.
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