WalkNI Awards 2020

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The best walks in Northern Ireland

2020 may not have been the year of adventures we had planned, but we certainly have been making the most of those times when we could get out walking! In fact, according to a survey carried out by Outdoor Recreation NI, 63% more people in Northern Ireland got active outdoors during the first COVID-19 Lockdown, 84% of us felt physically fitter/healthier as a result and 89% of us felt calm, relaxed and refreshed after spending time being active outdoors.

This year we are once again celebrating the best walks in Northern Ireland through our annual awards! Competition is certainly fierce for these coveted titles. In this blog we introduce you to the nominees to help you make up your mind on who to vote for.

This we are delighted to have the WalkNI Awards sponsored by Sperrin View Glamping who are offering one lucky person who votes a two-night luxury stay in their Glamping Pods worth £200. Located in the foothills of the Sperrin mountains, these luxury Pods are an astronomers dream in a prime location which has been recognised as one of Northern Ireland’s recommended Dark Sky Sites. Featuring a specially manufactured “viewing window”, these glamping pods allow you to lie in bed and gaze upon the stars. You also have your own kitchenette, ensuite bathroom, private firepit to toast smores and a BBQ area.

Click here to VOTE!
Voting closes at 11:59pm on 32/12/20 T&C’s apply.

BEST SUMMIT/HILLTOP VIEW IN NORTHERN IRELAND
There is no better reward than a spectacular view after an uphill trek! The Nominees below range from hilltop views with incredible city views to lofty mountain peaks in the spectacular Mourne Mountains.

BEST PLACE FOR A FAMILY WALK
Whether it be making the most of time outside at the weekend or the school holidays we all have our favourite places to go. From fun adventure play parks to a woodland adventure trail full of Giant’s Northern Ireland certainly has plenty to offer families looking to get outside.

BEST COMMUNITY TRAIL IN NORTHERN IRELAND
In recent years there has been a focus on developing trails in or close to local communities. These trails have never been more important than during the first COVID-19 Lockdown giving people a safe place to walk away from main roads. The list below includes trails around small community forests, sport pitches and even a waterside walk in the city.

BEST PLACE TO WALK WITH YOUR DOG
Did you get a new dog this year to encourage you to get out for more walks? Or perhaps you have had a dog for years and have your favourite walking trail you like to explore together. From beaches and forests to riverside walks there are certainly plenty of trails to get your tail wagging!

BEST PLACE TO GO FOR A WALK AND A PICNIC
In 2020 we have been getting used to meeting family and friends outside (socially distanced!) in line with restrictions and guidelines. From picnic benches in the forest to urban park greenspaces ideal for putting down a picnic blanket, where is your favourite place to stop for an alfresco coffee or lunch?!

BEST WALKER FRIENDLY (TAKEAWAY) COFFEE SHOP/ CAFE
At various times throughout 2020 we have only been able to pick up a takeaway coffee from our favourite coffee shops while out for a walk. But we want to know where your favourite place is to grab something warm to drink and perhaps pick up a takeaway picnic lunch or traybake!

  • Carrick Cottage Cafe (Mournes)
  • The Auld Bank Coffee Shop (Gortin)
  • Stables Coffee Shop (Sir Thomas & Lady Dixon Park)
  • Meelmore Lodge Cafe (Mournes)
  • JACK Coffee Bar (Connswater Community Greenway)
  • Lock Keepers Inn (Lagan Towpath)
  • The Argory Café (The Argory)
  • Synge & Byrne (Slieve Gullion)
  • The Stables Tea Room (Florence Court)
  • The Food Doc (Dungannon)
  • Montalto Estate Café (Montalto)

Click here to VOTE!