With Spring finally in full swing, the usually grey and wet Northern Ireland feels transformed under some rare sunlight. We have some fun ideas for all the family to enjoy in Northern Ireland this weekend. So if you're wondering what to do this weekend, whether it’s petting some farm animals at Streamvale or retreating to the newly opened Gobbins at Islandmagee, make it one to remember!
1. The Gobbins
Newly opened, The Gobbins path has an expansive, interesting history behind it alongside its breathtaking, coastal views. Originally opened in 1908, Northern Ireland’s burgeoning railway system enabled tourists to arrive to the hot-spot.
However, through a combination of high maintenance costs and the effects of the Great Depression in the 1930’s meant that the path closed during the Second World War. Since then there have been many attempts to restore what was a beloved attraction back to its former glory. The Northern Irish Troubles and insufficient funding repeatedly meant this wasn’t possible. Finally however in 2014 the path was built once more.
A high intensity walk with scenic views of crashing waves to match, The Gobbins is not for the faint-hearted! Appropriate footwear is a must.
Northern Ireland has become renowned worldwide for the part that its scenic views play in the hugely popular series, Game of Thrones. With a choice of Iron Islands and Stormlands or Winterfell locations, you can jump right into the world of Game of Thrones at locations right on your doorstep. Encompassing locations such as Cushundun Caves, Renly’s camp in the Stormlands and Carrick-a-rede rope bridge to name but a few, delve into the landscapes that brought the story to life time and time again.
3. Rathlin Sound Maritime Festival
Kicking off this weekend for its fourth year, come celebrate the coastal wonders of Rathlin Island and its surrounding areas. The “sound” is the stretch of sea between Rathlin Island and Ballycastle that many of the nautical events are focussed on. For 10 days there will be lots of fun, family friendly activities that include scenic boat trips, fishing, fancy dress and even cookery classes for Northern Ireland’s Year of Food and Drink. There’s a whole host of coastal camaraderie to get up to at the Rathlin Sound Maritime Festival this weekend.
4. Streamvale Farm
If cuddle times with bunnies, walkies with pups and feeding baby lambs and goats sounds like your cup of tea then why not get yourself down to Streamvale Farm this weekend? Cute farmyard animals aside there's also pony rides, barrel rides and sheep races to keep you and your little ones entertained. Streamvale Farm’s long established history as a Northern Ireland attraction has made it a perfect family friendly weekend activity.
5. Country Fair at Florence Court
The beautiful 18th Century Estate, Florence Court, is situated in West Fermanagh. A National Trust property surrounded by forest and mountains, it is the ideal peaceful weekend outing amid nature. As an added bonus, this weekend they’re holding a country fair that includes live music, crafts and a dog show. Don’t miss it!