Many of us have been enjoying the outdoors recently, taking in the beautiful scenery Northern Ireland has to offer. If you fancy avoiding crowded areas or have ran out of scenic walks to enjoy, we have got you covered with 10 hidden gems for you to discover.
Please keep yourself and others safe by abiding by current social distancing guidelines when out and about.
10 Lesser Known Walks in Northern Ireland
Take in the views of Lough Foyle to Errigal and Muckish in Donegal, Sawel and the high Sperrins, and south-east to The Mournes and Slieve Gullion, while walking above the Glenshane Pass. Carntogher stretches 5.6 miles and is full of history and archaeological heritage, and a number of monuments still stand in the landscape today.
Boorin Nature Reserve, Co. Tyrone
Get your hiking boots on and stroll through the Boorin Nature Reserve where during summer, you might just spot some of the beautiful wildlife in their natural habitat. There are no walking trails through the reserve so perhaps this is one for the more advanced walkers.
The Gobbins Cliff Path, Co. Antrim
Reopening on the 1st September 2020, The Gobbins Cliff Path runs along basalt cliffs directly over the Irish Sea where you will feel the waves at your feet and perhaps spot some species swimming! There are also plenty of places nearby to relax and catch a coffee to end a wonderful day.
Blue Lough, Mourne Mountains, Co.Down
If you aren’t a fan of long hikes, then trekking through the Blue Lough for 5 miles is the perfect starting point. Situated at the beginning of the Mourne Mountains, you will still be able to take in the fresh mountain air whilst following gentle gradients and making use of pathways.
Ballymoyer Woodland, Co. Armagh
Following the Creggan River, Ballymoyer Woodland weaves its way through the mixed woodland of a fairy glen with deep mossy and ferned banks. Situated in the countryside, you will often find this route peaceful and non-crowded which is perfect if you’re looking for a leisurely Sunday stroll.
Garvagh Forest Trails, Co.Derry/Londonderry
Garvagh forest has so much to offer for walkers, cyclists and mountain bikers with different trails to suit everyone. There are 3 trails for walkers; Pyramid Trail, River Trail and Canning Trail, which all differ in distance which is ideal if you’re on a family day out or even going solo.
Portballintrae Causeway Loop, Co.Antrim
If you still want to visit the North Coast but fancy a different route, the Portballintrae Causeway loop will provide scenic views of the beautiful beach and surrounding cliffs. Starting in Portballintrae you will walk along the coast until you reach the Giant's Causeway which is another hot spot for walkers. This is definitely one for a sunny day so take a look at the weather before you head off, so you don’t miss any of the beauty spots!
An Creagán Forest and River Trail, Co. Tyrone
This walk is part of the ‘Highway to Health Scheme’ which aims to encourage people of all ages to walk for leisure and good health. Situated near Omagh town, walking through the forest, different wildlife can be observed, the trail makes its way along the Glasagh Burn with beautiful views of Cashel mountain. Plan your walk today.
Cranny Falls, Co. Antrim
Situated in the town of Carnlough, Cranny Falls is a gentle incline which takes you along an old limestone railway track to the now disused Gortin Quarry. Take in the history of Cranny Falls and fresh air throughout the walk which will bring you to the stunning Cranny Waterfall at the end!
Cladagh Glen, Co. Fermanagh
If you don’t fancy doing the Cuilcagh Boardwalk, Cladagh Glen is the first section of Cuilcagh which is suitable if you prefer a linear route. You will walk through the stunning landscape of the Cladagh River Gorge taking in views of limestone cliffs, cascading waterfalls, cave springs, a turbulent river and a rich treasury of wildflowers.
Are there any scenic walks in your local area? Let us know on Facebook or Twitter using the hashtag #SmarterLiving.