Guidebook

Four of Northern Ireland's Finest Hikes

With everything from an easy stroll to a huge mountain mission, this small selection of routes is as varied as the Northern Irish scenery!

Charlie Boscoe

Description

Whether you're interested in epic sea views, gorgeous and atmospheric mountain ranges, or rolling bucolic fields, Northern Ireland has a hike for you. The fact that the country is home to some of the friendliest people on Earth only makes it more appealing. History buffs will also enjoy touring the country and hearing about its fascinating and, at times, troubled history.

We've included 4 hikes in this guidebook and they'll give you a snapshot of what this friendly and beautiful country has to offer. On the north coast there's a wonderful trip through County Antrim which will lead you to the World-famous Giant's Causeway. Closer to Belfast lie the 2 shortest hikes in here - the trip up Divis mountain, high above Belfast itself - and the short stroll up and around Scrabo Tower above Strangford Lough. The southernmost route in here is an utter beast - The Denis Rankin Round - which can only be attempted by mountain machines! That's not to say you couldn't break it up and do it in stages over the course of a few days. Whichever way you choose to do it, most hikers are just glad of an excuse to explore the famous Mourne mountains through which the route goes.

The "elephant in the room" when it comes to Northern Ireland is the weather, which isn't always perfect - to put it mildly! As such, you'll need to factor in a few extra days when planning a hiking trip there, but spending a few rainy days exploring distilleries, quaint towns and fascinating cultural sites is no hardship!

Causeway Coast Way, County Antrim
The best Routes on FATMAP, hand-picked by FATMAP’s Editorial team.

Causeway Coast Way, County Antrim

5 - 6 hrs
25.4 km
658 m
707 m
This dramatic, sea-sprayed walk has some of the finest cliff scenery in Europe.
Moderate
Private
The Ridge and Summit Trails of the Black Mountains
The best Routes on FATMAP, hand-picked by FATMAP’s Editorial team.

The Ridge and Summit Trails of the Black Mountains

2 - 3 hrs
8.4 km
212 m
212 m
A wonderful trip with views of everything from barren moorland to Belfast city and port.
Difficult
Private
Scrabo Tower from Newtownards
The best Routes on FATMAP, hand-picked by FATMAP’s Editorial team.

Scrabo Tower from Newtownards

2 - 3 hrs
9.0 km
185 m
185 m
Climb to a local landmark and enjoy an epic view!
Moderate
Private
Denis Rankin Round
The best Routes on FATMAP, hand-picked by FATMAP’s Editorial team.

Denis Rankin Round

1 day +
83.5 km
6,382 m
6,381 m
The Denis Rankin Round, a 24 hour challenge in the Mourne Mountains
Severe
Private