Fireworks over the River Foyle, Derry~Londonderry.
The allure of the Oak Grove County is wrapped up in its beautiful scenery and tranquillity, mixed with vibrant cultural and historical attractions, action, adventure and a strong literary heritage.
1. Marvel at Mussenden Temple
This circular temple built in 1785 totters on a cliff edge high above the Atlantic Ocean. It's in the grounds of the ruins of historic Downhill Demesne, which are wonderful too. Hike around the estate and clifftop walks for stupendous views. Downhill beach and the temple exterior were used in Game of Thrones, but this is a fabulous site, even if you're not a fan.
2. Wander the wall
If you do nothing else in County Londonderry, you should linger around Derry’s city walls, feel dwarfed, and then walk the one mile around them – all for free. The only completely intact city walls in Ireland, they stand 26 feet high and 30 feet wide. Your walk will take in all the main sights, including four sets of original gates and 24 original cannon. Don’t miss the famed ‘Roaring Meg’.
3. Hit the Causeway Coastal Route
Carve out your own beautiful slice of the Causeway Coastal Route by hitting the road from Derry to the pristine beaches at Benone and Downhill, where Game of Thrones was filmed. Enjoy a bracing walk along the miles of stunning golden sand. Or take the car on, admire the views and munch on a unique car picnic.
4. Get lost in the Jungle
Test your sense of daring and adventure at the Jungle NI. This adrenaline-packed outdoor adventure centre will let you feel the thrills and excitement of anything from tree-top high wires to zorbing, archery with a difference, clay pigeon shooting and even llama trekking. It’s also the largest paintball site in Northern Ireland.
5. Golf like a pro
A venue for a European Tours golf tournament needs to have a bit of class. Enter Portstewart Golf Course, the host of the 2017 Irish Open and one of the few clubs in Ireland with three courses to its name. A round on its championship Strand course is like visiting a national park – dazzling.
6. Step into Heaney’s HomePlace
Immerse yourself in the world of the most widely published poet in the English language. County Londonderry was a major inspiration to the late Seamus Heaney, and now the Heaney HomePlace is a must-go for literary fans and the curious alike. Over two floors, go on a journey through the Nobel Laureate’s life, his experiences, and the people that inspired his poetry.
7. Gear up for Halloween
The city of Londonderry is acclaimed as the best place in the world to experience Halloween, and the eeriest time of year is certainly one of the best times to go to the ‘City of Bones’ – but do dress up. Thousands of be-costumed witches, devils and fun loving what-nots throng the streets for the main parade and the whole carnival lasts for four days. The most haunting must-do Derry experience.
8. Take to the Tower
The Tower Museum is spread over five floors and its uppermost level gives stunning panoramic views of the Walled City and River Foyle. But immerse yourself first in the city’s past with the Story of Derry Exhibition and An Armada Shipwreck – La Trinidad Valencera, the story of the Spanish Galleon that sank of the Donegal Coast in 1588.
9. Instagram Free Derry Corner
Delve into Londonderry’s rich and complex history with great Instagram moments at the iconic Free Derry Corner gable wall and the city’s famous walls. Take a guided tour and hear all about the famous 105-day siege of 1688. Explore the histories of the time at the Siege Museum and Museum of Free Derry.
10. Walk the camomile lawn
Every step you take on the camomile lawn at Springhill House releases a delicious apple fragrance. This charming ‘Plantation’ home also has a series of small walled gardens to enjoy. Situated on the edge of the picturesque Sperrin Mountains and often called the ‘prettiest house in Ulster’, it’s well worth a tour and walk.