Estimated time: 30-40 minutes
A visit to The Donkey Sanctuary starts at the Visitor Information Centre. Our friendly staff will be delighted to tell you about our donkeys and walkway and what you can expect to see as you stroll along our walkways. Our first group of donkeys live in a shed behind the Visitor Information Centre. These donkeys are kept near the farm, as they need special care and attention. Dowling, at 37 is the oldest donkey on the Open Farm and he lives in the Oldies group.
By the black gate entrance to the farm yard you will find our Adoption Donkey group. Make sure to stop and meet your Adoption Donkey before you start your stroll. To find the walkway, go through the farm yard and left around the farm buildings. The walkway starts at Lime Kiln Walk under the shelter of the lime trees at the end of the yard. For your convenience different sections of the walkway have been sign posted.
At the right hand side of the fence you will find younger very friendly donkeys that enjoy the attention they receive from our many visitors. Some of these donkeys came into our care as foals and some were born in our care. The Donkey Sanctuary has a no breeding policy but if a mare comes into our care in foal, her foal is offered the same sanctuary as its mother.
With the aid of a grant from Ballyhoura Development in 1999, our walkway was extended to the end of the Sheehan's Walk. Once again, in 2003, Ballyhoura Development were able to help us with another grant enabling us to make a further extension to our walk, now called Rock Walk.
Whilst on the walkway there are vantage points from which to see the donkeys, historical sites and village/countryside of Liscarroll. The castle, the third largest of Ireland's 13th Century castles, is best seen from the Rock Walkway. As you continue along Rock Walk, it loops around to the Valley Walk and Fort Walk. Valley Walk is a good vantage point to see the donkeys who live in the Valley Shed and our mules who live near them. There are five mules at the Open Farm and they are called Bonnie, Bowser, Janet, Tally and Red.
The name Fort Walk is given to a short section of walkway where evidence of a Ring Fort still remains today. To help identify it, rocks have been placed in the area of the fort. Follow Fort Walk back to Sheehan's walkway and this will bring you back down to Lime Kiln Walk. For a short loop at the bottom of Sheehan's Walk, walk up Coleman's Walk and back down Barrett's Walk which will bring you back to the Oldies group.
For a longer walk, try Farm Walk. This walk is adjacent to the main road and links to Rock Walk and Valley Walk. Please note that Farm Walk is not suitable for young children or buggies. To ensure you undertake the best walk for your abilities, please speak to our staff in the Visitor Information Centre.