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Hovercrafting, County Londonderry

Great Learning Holidays

If you want to learn a new skill, why not try one of the hundreds of workshops and courses that take place each year in Northern Ireland. 

Whether its improving your singing voice, trying your hand at cocktail making, learning how to impress your dinner guests or exploring the underwater world with diving classes, there’s something to inspire everyone.

1. Get Creative

Piping in ArmaghHead along to any number of classes and workshops taking place at venues such as the Crescent Arts Centre in Belfast and the Nerve Centre in Londonderry/Derry.

Armagh Pipers Club in Armagh City also run a range of classes, for both children and adults alike, with expert tutors in bagpipes, banjo, concertina and more. Pop into The Dirty Onion, one of Belfast’s newest bars and challenge yourself to a bodhrán lesson or an Irish language class, or if you've always wanted to improve your singing skills, try a vocal workshop at An Droichead in Belfast. Expert coaches use a mixture of contemporary, traditional and world music to help develop your ability - miracles cannot be promised, though.  Alternatively, as part of Learn to Tyrone, why not unleash your literary side with Learn to Write Creatively with Emma Heatherington in Dungannon.

2. Try Something New!

Blessingbourne Bike Trail
Learn how to sail and experience the beauty of the Antrim Coast with Causeway Coast Sailing.  Enjoy a half day sailing for up to three people on a yacht and learn the ropes of sailing with a hands-on experience.

Take a dive in the sea and explore the underwater world with Aquaholics which is sure to be an experience you will never forget. The session lasts approximately three hours and normally takes place in the Portstewart area where you will be fitted out with diving equipment before staff brief you on the dive and the adventure really begins. 

Saddle up and head to Forest Stables in Fivemiletown and learn how to ride a horse.  The stables pull out all the stops to make sure you have an unforgettable experience and as well as riding, it teaches all aspects of horse care and management. 

Learn one of the fastest growing sports in the world with a stand up paddle board lesson with Troggs Surf School in Portrush.  During the lesson you will learn all the paddling skills and techniques you will need to know in a few easy steps including self rescue techniques. 

Simply Sea Kayak is based on the beautiful North Coast and there is no better place to go kayaking.  Enjoy a tailored session to suit your own ability and learn new skills or add to the skills you already have.  During the session there may be a chance to visit famous landmarks and to go in the search of wildlife as you paddle along part of the North Coast trail.  

The Park Lake fly fishery in Dungannon is a 12-acre stream fed lake, set in the middle of rolling grassland and mature woodland.  The lake is home to a range of aquatic insects and fly life and is stocked weekly with rainbow trout.  For those keen to learn how to fly fish, angling instruction is available by booking and all equipment is supplied.

Perfect for the adrenaline junkies - learn how to mountain bike through woods on world-class trails at Blessingbourne in Fivemiletown, rally drive on the extreme terrain at Rally Storm in Omagh or body zorb at Todds Leap in Ballygawley.

3. Foodie Delights

Mourne Seafood Cookery SchoolTry your hand at cocktail making with classes organised at various venues around Northern Ireland, including Ten Square in Belfast.

Belle Isle Cookery School is the ultimate destination for food lovers.  Discover the delights of creating modern cuisine in the stunning Lakelands of Fermanagh.  The school offers many classes in different cuisines including Italian, Chinese and Thai as
well as traditional Irish food.  A four-week diploma programme as well as one day courses and evening demonstrations are all available.

You’ll find the freshest fish and seafood at the Mourne Seafood Cookery School in Kilkeel where you can find out more about what to look for when buying, handling and cooking seafood.  Learn how fish is filleted, handled and cooked with classes designed for both beginners and food enthusiasts.  In Dungannon, the popular 'Cook with Norah' cookery classes at Grange Lodge  with Norah Brown, one of Rick Stein's 'food heroes', will give you the opportunity to learn about and recreate some of Norah's much loved recipes and home-cooking.

4. Gardens Galore

66670-Hillsborough Garden FestivalWhy not visit Ballyrobert Cottage Garden, Ballyclare Co. Antrim here you can find out about the plants they grow and sell, also attend a workshop where you can seek advice on your own plants.  Or you could attend a course in flower arranging at Kilcoan Gardens in Larne Co. Antrim.

5. Discover your Creative Side in Northern Ireland

Jewellery making in Northern IrelandWhy not visit the Northern Ireland Economusee attractions such as Broighter Gold, Limavady Co. Londonderry where you can learn how Broighter Gold Rapaesseed oil is made.  Visit Scullion Hurls, Loughguile at the edge of the Antrim Glens where you can experience the craftmanship involved in hurl making. Or you can pay a visit to Steensons Jewellers where you can watch the goldsmiths at work. 

Why not try your hand at Airbrushing for Beginners and Custom Painting, SM Designs in Ballymena can be adapted into various hobbies including beauty, interior design, remote control or models, cake decorating, fishing lures, automotive customisation and many more.  Learn to Tyrone offers the chance to make your own jewellery, be it necklace, earring or bracelet as part of a group or individually, at Carol Kinloch Beaded Designs, Omagh.  Learn the basis of our linen industry by spinning yarn at Nature's Window Studio or revamp unloved furniture with the vintage effect at Dollybird Vintage (also both in Omagh).

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European Regional Development Fund