Derreen Garden covers more than 60 acres of garden and has over 12 km of paths which wind through mature & varied woodland full of rare and exotic plants. The garden is also a haven for wildlife and a habitat for Sika deer, Irish hares and red squirrel. Seals can often be seen from the shore and there have been sightings of otters and Kerry’s rarest mammal, the pine marten.
By the shore there is an abundance of bird life, including cormorants, oyster catchers, gulls, great northern divers, guillemots, and sea eagles.
There are a number of walks around the garden taking 30 minutes to an hour, although it is easy to get drawn into exploring and many visitors will spend a few hours before finishing off their visit with a picnic, cream tea (available at the cottage close to the car park) or a trip to the nearby pub at Kilmakilloge.
The “Derreeny Houses” are located in Derreen Garden along the Glade Walk and the adjacent section of the Broad Walk. To date 20 such houses have been found. All the houses are vacant, but look like they have recently been lived in. There have been reports from children walking in the garden of movements in the Rhododendrons as they walk along the paths in the garden.. “Derreenies” are about 2 inches (5cm) tall, but, are rarely seen. The last sighting of a “Derreeny” was in 1855.
In 2016 the Derreen Café reopened . It offers lunch as well as tea and coffee and a wide variety of home-baked cakes to refresh yourself before or after a garden walk.