Off the Beaten track – Ireland
Finn Lough resort is a couple’s paradise – One of the best spa escapes we have vistedso far in Ireland. Tucked away on the edge of Lough (lake) Erne in Fermanagh, Northern Ireland. This was a wedding gift from our besties and by far the most memorable experience of the year.
What a way to spend an anniversary – in your birthday suit if you may (shhhhh!!). Here, you are as free as bird- to explore the landscape, loosing yourself in the forest trails, pedal kayaking on the lake and the wonderful Elements trail spa. You truly experience all the elements air, fire, earth and water, the epitamy of mindfulness that stays with you and kept us talking about for days after we left. We really could not stop talking about our escape into nature.
Things to do:
walk in the woods – swap your boots for Finn Lough’s wellies and delve into the woods – you might spot a stag
explore the peninsula by bicycle or venture on a mountain biking expedition
vintage cinema room – transport back in time to ‘Sleepless in Seattle’ on a rainy day (cocktail in hand)
whiskey or gin tasting – discover new flavours and enlighten your taste buds with fine whiskey or gin
Other activities – fishing, pedal crafting,
We arrived early for our spa appointment and had the opportunity to walk around the estate on a 2-mile woodlands trail. If you are lucky, you’ll spot the media shy wildlife such as deer and badgers. We spotted a red squirrel (very ‘wild’) which is often a scarcity to see – that’s about it. It was raining and if you consider yourself ‘un’lucky with wet weather in Ireland, this is the place to be! There is nothing more romantic than ‘The Elements Trail’ in the rain.
The Elements Trail is an intimate forest spa that awakens all your senses in the rugged Northern Irish beauty. This is a 2-hour self-guided experience with 20 minutes in each bespoke space, tucked away among trees and on the edge of the lake. Your first stop is the Epsom salt float pool for 20-minutes of weightless relaxation in the dark. As soon as your time is up, rinse the salt and make your way down to the lake side edge for a Finnish style sauna experience.
Relax and enjoy the beautiful lake side view with an occasional fishing boat passing, have a quick dip in the lake and jump back in the sauna for further relaxation and detoxing. These hot room-cooling down cycles is solely based on your own personal preference. We loved the variation of icy water combined with fiery heat.
We then made our way to the herbal sauna. From the moment we walked in, our senses were awakened with the aromatic smell of mint, lemon, rosemary and birch.
Be mindful of how much time you spend in each location – we lost some time along the way and only got to soak in the hot tub (last point – hydro pool) for 10 minutes before a staff member made us aware of the remaining time. We wanted to lie back and relax in the quiet room before the timer is up. So, we hopped out of the hydro pool straight in to the quiet room drinking Namas’tea’, reflecting on the lush Irish green forestscape. It was bliss!
We stayed in one of the new Bubble Domes at Finn Lough and the experience was truly immersive with the 180-degree transparent walls. Each dome has its own very private plot strategically positioned where you can experience an almost panoramic view sleeping under the stars with the comfort of a luxury suite private in your own bubble!
We had dinner at the restaurant and it was Michelin Star quality. The food was very fresh, locally sourced and simply delicious. After dinner, we had a lakeside champagne sun-downer with chocolate fondue and S’mors roasting on the wood fire, booked. However, due to the inclement weather, we had to cancel and made our way down to the bar for cocktails instead.
What we loved the most about Finn Lough, is that the entire experience as a whole made us feel like we were the only guests on the property. Their incredibly friendly staff, the secluded private bubble and the private spa experience made it.
It is obvious that a lot of thought has gone into the guest’s experience in essence a couple’s retreat in the heart of Northern Ireland.