Hiking in Northern Ireland

One super cheap Ryanair flight later and I was in Ireland. As much as I’m not a fan of the dreaded Ryanair with their strict rules and steep fines, it is hard to resist some of the deals. For September the majority of flights from the United Kingdom to Dublin were priced under £20. Gez. Guess I had to visit Ireland now.

I was picked up by my Irish mate Steve and we were away on my second roadtrip of the year. We headed north to Steve’s home territory for the first couple of nights.

Some sheep by a dam on the first evening. My first hint that Ireland might be rather pretty

We went hiking up Northern Ireland’s highest mountain – Slieve Donard. I think Steve was trying to kill me

We ate a picnic with this view on our way up the mountain

Aw pretty Steve!

It was a little bit foggy at the top

The Titanic museum in Belfast is most definitely worth a visit

Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge. It’s more fun if you bounce across to the island

Then we headed to the Giant’s Causeway. This is the view from above if you walk along the cliffs

Up close it becomes much more impressive

Sitting in the wishing chair

Mandatory selfie

The view walking back to the car was gasp-worthy

A giant sunset

Some issues that we had with the Giant’s Causeway is the lack of parking. Well there is parking at the visitor’s centre, but with a price tag of £8 per person, we weren’t so keen to park there. Access to the cliffs and causeway itself is free as per Ireland’s public right of access laws. But the way the National Trust have set up the site next to the cliffs and strictly enforce no parking on the sides of the surrounding roads.. well there isn’t many happy reviews on Trip Advisor about them. The set-up makes it look like you have to pay to see the cliffs when in fact you don’t. Even if you don’t care about the visitor centre, you still gotta pay the steep £8 pp just to park. We ended up parking in a nearby pub (with a promise that we would buy a drink post-cliffs) and then walked over the visitors centre’s roof to get to the cliffs. My opinion of the National Trust was significantly lowered that day. I’m sure anyone else who has visited will agree too.

But that was the end of our sight-seeing in Northern Island. We went to sleep that night in Derry ready for the drive into Southern Ireland the next day.

Where did we stay: In various places belonging to Steve’s family for free! Perks of travelling with a local ;)


4 thoughts on “Hiking in Northern Ireland

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