Set deep in the heart of the County Tyrone countryside, Blessingbourne Country Estate is the ideal location for family getaways, romantic breaks, and active adventures.
Steeped in history, the beautiful 550-acre Blessingbourne Country Estate is nestled deep in the picturesque countryside at the edge of the Clogher Valley.
Earlier this week, we had the pleasure of staying in one of their beautiful five-star pet-friendly self-catering accommodation options to make use of the fantastic facilities on the estate.
Owned and operated by husband and wife team Colleen and Nick Lowry, the estate is a wonderfully unique and charming place to stay in northwest Ireland.
We had a wonderful time and came to the conclusion that Blessingbourne is truly one of Northern Ireland’s hidden gems. So, if you’re planning your next Irish getaway, here are five reasons you need to stay at Blessingbourne Country Estate.
5. A great location – a tranquil escape within a five-minute walk of the nearest town
Staying at Blessingbourne Country Estate, you feel as if you’re miles away from the rest of the world. Offering peace and tranquillity at the heart of nature, you are tucked away in the estate’s picturesque woodland, allowing for the ultimate privacy during your break.
However, once you leave the gates of Blessingbourne, you are just a five-minute walk from the centre of Fivemiletown. A quaint rural village filled with shops and great places to eat.
During our stay at Blessingbourne, we were very kindly treated to a delicious meal at The Valley Hotel in Fivemiletown. And while we thoroughly enjoyed making use of the self-catering amenities to cook for ourselves during our stay, it was a real treat to enjoy a delicious sit-down meal.
The Valley Hotel is owned and operated by The Williamson family, who have missed no detail in offering a great place to eat and stay. We ordered a Salt ‘n’ Chilli Chicken Burger with tobacco onions, garlic mayo, salad, and chips, and a vegetable curry served with rice and prawn crackers (however, these were left out to make the dish vegan).
The food was absolutely phenomenal, and everything on the menu was very reasonably priced. The restaurant was beautifully decorated with a tasteful purple interior and comfortable seating areas.
The family-run hotel has a truly friendly local feel and staff were incredibly friendly and accommodating during our visit. Duty Manager Lisa Williamson made sure we were looked after during our visit!
While enjoying the privacy and natural surroundings offered by a stay at Blessingbourne Country Estate is part of its appeal, it is great to have such fantastic amenities so close by.
Address: Blessingbourne Estate, Murley Rd, Fivemiletown BT75 0QS
4. Perfect for animal lovers – meet the estate’s other residents
Not only does Blessingbourne offer pet-friendly accommodation (including a private horse stable yard), allowing guests to bring their four-legged family members along with them. Rather, the estate is also home to a whole host of animals and wildlife that you can visit during your stay.
The 550-acre estate also houses a working farm and a nature reserve. Throughout the estate, you will come across everything from peacocks to goats, horses to dogs, and chickens to cows. So, if you or anyone you’re travelling with is an animal lover, then we highly recommend checking out the estate.
If you are lucky, you might even catch a glimpse of some red squirrels and deer, who sometimes visit the estate. Unfortunately, we didn’t spot any red squirrels while we were there. However, we did see a deer that had wandered onto the estate. You won’t see things like that in the city!
3. Incredible history – take a deep dive into the past
Blessingbourne Country Estate boasts a long and varied history that hosts Colleen and Nick are more than happy to share with guests.
The central feature of the estate is a beautiful Elizabethan-style manor house that overlooks Lough Fadda and the surrounding gardens. The estate came into the Montgomery family by marriage in the 18th-century when Elizabeth Armar married Hugh Montgomery of Derrygonnelly Castle in County Fermanagh.
If you want to discover more about the history of this incredible estate, you can book a tour with Colleen and Nick. During the tour, you can enjoy a walk through the beautiful Victorian gardens, a private tour of the main ground floor rooms of the Manor House, and a guided stroll around the extensive Coach, Carriage, and Costume Collections.
If you’re interested in Irish history and mythology, there are also plenty of fantastic things for you to see and do nearby. You can visit the incredible Knockmany Passage Tomb on the summit of Knockmany Hill, which is said to be a passage to another world. Or, you can discover more about Ireland’s patron saint with a visit to the nearby St Patrick’s Well.
2. Plenty to see and do – mountain biking, paddleboarding, scenic walks, and more
Do you enjoy active breaks or immersing yourself in the great outdoors? If so, then Blessingbourne Country Estate is the perfect place to visit. With so much to see and do within the estate grounds, you and your family will have plenty to keep you entertained.
One of the most unique aspects of this estate is the premier 13 km (8 miles) mountain biking trails. These feature a combination of blue and red/black trails designed by Phil Saxena, a course designer for the Beijing Olympics. There is also a pump track to practice your skills!
With something for all abilities, this is the perfect way to test your skills and explore the woodlands. Bike and helmet hire is also available for guests onsite.
Blessingbourne also boasts a private lake, Lough Fadda. During our stay, we headed out on our paddleboards. This was the perfect way to relax and see the estate from a new perspective. Lough Fadda is also perfect for boats, swimming, and fishing. So, you’ll be spoilt for choice of activities to enjoy.
Would you rather stay on dry land? No worries. There are also numerous walking trails that take you through the extensive and beautiful woodland. Make sure to keep an eye out for the red squirrels on your walk!
1. Luxurious accommodation – cosy cottages and beautiful apartments
Topping our list of reasons you need to visit Blessingbourne Country Estate is, of course, the beautiful and luxurious accommodation. You can choose from various self-catering accommodation options; the stunning Gate Lodge, the newly-renovated Oak Tree Cabin, and five private apartments.
All accommodation onsite is pet-friendly. So, you won’t have to worry about getting someone to look after your four-legged family members while you’re away.
During our visit, we stayed in the magnificent five-star Gate Lodge Cottage. As the name suggests, it is located right beside the gate of the estate. Sleeping up to five people, this fairytale cottage offers three bedrooms, two bathrooms, and an open-plan kitchen, dining, and living area.
The cottage was stocked with all the amenities we could need for our stay. Facilities included cooking equipment, a wood-burning stove, smart TVs, WiFi, and a BBQ. We were also greeted with a fully-stocked welcome hamper, complete with biscuits, wheaten bread, coffee, bread, and butter.
The cottage offers a great level of privacy. So, we weren’t bothered by noise outside during the day or night time. Behind the cottage, there was a large shed that was perfect for keeping our bikes stored away. There was also a beautiful pagoda where we sat out and enjoyed dinner on our first evening.
Staying at Blessingbourne Country Estate was the perfect way to rewind, relax, and reset. So, we can’t wait to visit again soon!
To find out more and to book your next Irish getaway, you can visit the Blessingbourne website here.