Walking in NI - Download your walking mini guides
Northern Ireland offers a vast array of unspoilt and untouched walking routes and trails.
The following information will give an overview of the most popular walking trails for the serious rambler and family friendly routes for those looking for a short stroll. You can also download your guides below.
High above Belfast’s ever changing cityscape lies Cave Hill. A familiar outline visible from all over the city, Cave Hill has become ingrained into Belfast’s social history and culture, making it one of the most celebrated landmarks in Northern Ireland. Also featuring in the famous background of Belfast are Divis and Black Mountain resting in the heart of the Belfast Hills. These mountains comprise of a mosaic of grassland, heath and bog and are home to a host of wildlife and archaeological remains.
For those looking for a picturesque canal walk, the Lagan Canal Towpath will be for you. This towpath takes walkers along the Lagan River and canal system through a variety of wetland, riverside meadows and mixed woodland from Belfast to Lisburn. Home to a variety of wildlife, the canal system still contains many features which date back to the late 18th century.
The Mourne Mountains are the place to go for those looking for spectacular hill walking and breathtaking mountain rambles. Slieve Donard (via Glen River) offers stunning panoramic views out over the whole of the Mournes area and beyond. However, much of the Mournes' appeal lie in the unspoilt scenic charm of the wider Mourne region, a landscape of woodlands and patchwork verdant farmland and a coastline rich in wildlife and heritage. Trails through Castlewellan Forest Park offer impressive vistas of the farmland on and around Slievenaboley, Legananny Mountains and Slieve Croob.
The Causeway Coast and the Glens of Antrim are justifiably famous throughout the world for their unique natural beauty. They offer a range of walking that serves to explore the very best of this scenery. From the coastal wonders of the Causeway Coast Way to the woodland waterfalls and pastoral farmlands of the Glenariff, you can discover all of this on a series of linked waymarked routes, taking on as much or as little as you please.
The Sperrins are one of the great secrets of Northern Ireland, an understated mountain range of high, rounded summits and lush pastoral valleys. Not only are the Sperrins designated as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, but they also serve up bountiful walking opportunities. Serious walkers will love the wild excursions onto the moorland summits using routes such as Robbers Table and the Craignamaddy Circuit, whilst families will feel equally at home exploring some of the likes of Gortin Forest Park.
As well as providing a home to a vast array of wildlife, including 1,000 seals and over 70,000 birds, Strangford Lough's shores are also home to some of the finest country estates, parklands and walking trails in Northern Ireland. There is something for every walker to enjoy but the trails are especially suited to families and those looking for well-signed scenic outings on good surfaces. Castle Ward, which hugs the Strangford coastline, offers a variety of trails passing through woodland, tower houses, castles and ancient monuments.
Finally, the enchanting lakelands of Fermanagh are laced with a network of paths and tracks that allow for endless exploration, on terrain that is ideal for keen walkers and families alike. These trails help make Fermanagh the ideal getaway for walkers who love fine views and landscapes rich in wildlife and heritage. The 12 mile walk from Florence Court to Cuilcagh Mountain is a highlight in this region.