Ways

Descriptions with maps, travel details, distances, physical difficulty of walks and other ways to explorer the great outdoors and have yourself a “Grand Day Out”

Divis and the Black Mountain

Divis and the Black Mountain Map
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Belfast is a city surrounded by uplands – the silhouettes of Cave Hill, Divis, The Black Mountain and the Castlereagh and Holywood Hills form its backdrop. Yet these hills for most remain unvisited and unknown. This is partly owing to the usual Northern Ireland problem of general lack of public access, but now, in the case of Divis and the Black Mountain this is no longer a factor. If you haven’t made it there yet this walk should serve as an introduction to this expansive and rewarding area.

The area is owned and maintained by the National Trust who have provided two car parks, a café and a very well designed and maintained series of trails. There is no admission charge so if you can get yourself to the car parks this is a very accessible mountain experience just five miles from the heart of Belfast City.

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The Hills of Mount Stewart

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Before first visiting the great mansion and Gardens of of Mount Stewart it would not be unreasonable to imagine it perched on an elevation with magnificent views over Strangford Lough to the distant Mountains of Mourne. In reality the house shelters in a hollow whose benign microclimate supports lush and verdant gardens which completely shield it from the world beyond.

However, the hills are still there and, thanks to the recent acquisition by the National Trust of land covering the whole of the historic demesne, this walk allows you to visit some of them.

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Connswater and Comber Greenways Loop

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The creation of Greenways as a means of improving urban life has been one of the success stories of the 21st century. By providing local outdoor exercise, access to green space and linking communities separated by traffic, noise and pollution they can deliver community benefit in the long term. East Belfast is fortunate to have two of the best Greenways. The older Comber Greenway along a disused railway line is an efficient pedestrian and cycle route from the heart of the city far into open countryside. The newer Connswater Greenway ingeniously links existing parks via a rescued urban waterway and a great new cultural hub based around the imaginary world of Belfast author C S Lewis. This walk explores both.

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Minnowburn, Shaw’s Bridge and Edenderry

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The Shaw’s Bridge to Edenderry riverside loop is probably one of the most popular walks in Belfast. This route however adds a number of twists to add variety, interest and less trodden paths. It also only follows the Lagan for 400m so is quite distinct from the popular variant.

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