This compact forest covers 600 hectares. It is distinctive in its combination of a National Nature Reserve of native oak within a mainly coniferous woodland of maturing spruce, larch and pine.
There are no facilities for recreational activities.
Occasionally, there may be restricted access to part of the forest due to forestry work so pay attention to safety signage.
About the forest
This native oak woodland is a small reserve with no clearly defined paths.
Opposite the National Nature Reserve entrance, to the left of the forest road, you may notice the standing stone in the field. Little is known about it but it stands as witness to human activity and involvement in this area far back in unrecorded history. There are also two other archaeological sites in the forest area:
- a Souterrain which is located within the fields to the rear of the farm buildings - unfortunately it is not very visible on the ground
- McQuillan’s Grave (chambered) which is situated to the eastern boundary of the forest
The road climbs up past young plantations of Christmas trees and ridges of the ancient oak wood. It then reaches the commercial high forest offering an excellent view directly across to Knocklayd mountain.
The Moyle Way cuts across the forest and is posted with the blue logo sign above a directional arrow. Watch out for the route marking that turns left off the forest road and follows a burn to the eastern edge of the forest.
How to get there
From Armoy, the forest is three miles east of the village on the B15 Glenshesk Road.
From Ballycastle, the forest is six miles south of the seaside town on the B15 Glenshesk Road.
Visitors should park in the small car park beside the B15 and walk up the road hedged with hawthorn and ash going into the forest. Care must be taken to make sure that no access points are blocked.