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Castle Espie Wetland Centre, Newtownards

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Contact: +44 28 9187 4146
Open Hours: Mo to Su from 10:00 AM to 05:00 PM
Castle Espie is a bird sanctuary run by the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust on the shores of Strangford Lough. Ireland's largest groups of ducks, geese and swans congregate here, and you can pick up a bag of feed on your way through reception which will bring the birds right up to your hand. Hides situated with spectacular views onto Strangford Lough are a haven for birdwatchers from all over Britain and Ireland, as Lough's waters are host to many birds unique to this area. There's a gift shop and a restaurant with lakeside views serving hot and cold snacks. The sanctuary is open every day of the year except Christmas day, and it is worth visiting in winter too for sightings of Icelandic swans.