When it comes to camping, Northern Ireland has a wealth of beautiful locations to choose from. From rugged coastlines to serene forests, there are plenty of places to pitch a tent and enjoy the great outdoors. In this article, we'll take a look at some of the best campsites in Northern Ireland that you won't want to miss.
Our favourite campsites in northern Ireland
1. Castle Ward, County Down
Located on the shores of Strangford Lough, Castle Ward is a stunning campsite with a mix of woodland and open fields. The campsite has excellent facilities, including hot showers, toilets, and a campsite shop. There are also plenty of activities to enjoy, including mountain biking, archery, and canoeing.
Things to do at Castle Ward
Explore the Grounds
One of the best things about Castle Ward, County Down campsite is the breathtaking landscape that surrounds it. The campsite sits on the edge of the Strangford Lough and is surrounded by lush woodland and rolling hills. There are plenty of walking and cycling trails to explore, which offer stunning views of the surrounding countryside.
If you're feeling adventurous, why not try the Castle Ward Trails? These trails range in difficulty from easy to challenging and take you through some of the most beautiful parts of the estate. You can even take a guided tour and learn about the history and ecology of the area.
If you're looking for something a little more challenging, why not try your hand at archery? Castle Ward, County Down campsite offers archery lessons and target practice, so you can try your hand at this ancient sport. It's a great activity for families, couples, or solo adventurers, and is sure to provide hours of fun.
For those who love horses, Castle Ward, County Down campsite offers horse riding lessons and guided tours. You can explore the stunning countryside on horseback, taking in the sights and sounds of the area at a leisurely pace. It's a great activity for all ages and abilities and is sure to be a highlight of your camping experience.
Website: Castle Ward Caravan Park
2. Ballyness Caravan Park, County Antrim
Ballyness Caravan Park is a family-friendly campsite that's perfect for those looking for a bit of luxury. The campsite has excellent facilities, including a swimming pool, hot tubs, and a sauna. There's also a nearby beach and plenty of walking trails to explore.
Things to do Ballyness Caravan Park
1. Coastal Walks
If you're a fan of scenic walks and stunning views, you'll be spoilt for choice at Ballyness Caravan Park. The campsite is located just a few miles from the Causeway Coast, a rugged coastline that boasts some of the most beautiful scenery in Northern Ireland. From the iconic Giant's Causeway to the stunning Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge, there are plenty of walks and hikes to choose from.
Whether you're an experienced hiker or a beginner, there are walks to suit all levels of fitness and ability. So why not lace up your hiking boots, pack a picnic and spend a day exploring the breathtaking coastline?
Golf enthusiasts will be delighted to know that Ballyness Caravan Park is just a short drive from some of the best golf courses in Northern Ireland. From the world-renowned Royal Portrush Golf Club to the stunning Bushfoot Golf Club, there are plenty of opportunities to tee off and enjoy a round or two.
3. Visit where Game of Thrones was filmed
Discover the wonders of Westeros with a tour of iconic locations from the popular series, "Game of Thrones."
Explore the site where Melissandre burned the effigies of the Seven Gods and walk along the beach where Jaime and Bronn attempted to rescue Myrcella, only to be discovered by Dornish soldiers.
Marvel at the Dothraki Grasslands where Daenerys escaped from the Meeren fighting pits on the back of Drogon, and visit Pyke and the Iron Islands where Theon was baptized and Melisandre burned Stannis Baratheon's bannerman.
Take a stroll through the dramatic headland beside the Carrick-a-rede rope bridge where Renly Baratheon had his camp, and climb the Dragonstone Cliffs at Fairhead, where many important meetings between characters such as Daenerys, Jon Snow, Tyrion, Melisandre, and Varys took place.
Find out exactly where Game of Thrones were filmed here.
3. Tollymore Forest Park
County Down Tollymore Forest Park is a serene woodland campsite that's perfect for a peaceful getaway. The campsite has plenty of facilities, including toilets, showers, and a campsite shop. There are also plenty of walking trails to explore, including the famous Mourne Mountains.
Things to do at Tollymore Forest Park
1. Mountain Biking
For adrenaline junkies, Tollymore Forest Park Campsite offers some of the best mountain biking trails in Northern Ireland. There are several trails to choose from, ranging from easy to difficult. The Castle Trail is a 5-kilometer trail that's perfect for beginners. It takes you through the forest and past the ruins of an old castle. The Red Trail is a 19-kilometer trail that's suitable for more experienced riders. It's a challenging trail that takes you through the mountains and offers stunning views of the surrounding area.
If you don't have your own bike, you can rent one from the on-site bike hire shop. The shop offers a range of bikes, including mountain bikes and electric bikes. They also offer helmets and other safety gear.
If you're looking for a fun and challenging activity, why not try orienteering? Tollymore Forest Park Campsite has several orienteering courses that are suitable for all ages and abilities. Orienteering involves navigating your way through a course using a map and compass. It's a great way to explore the forest and test your navigation skills.
The campsite has several permanent orienteering courses that are available all year round. The courses range in difficulty, from easy courses for beginners to more challenging courses for experienced orienteers. The courses are well-marked, and there are several checkpoints along the way. If you're new to orienteering, you can take part in one of the regular events that are held at the campsite throughout the year. These events are a great way to meet other orienteers and improve your skills.
The Shimna River runs through Tollymore Forest Park, offering some of the best fishing in Northern Ireland. The river is stocked with brown trout, sea trout, and salmon, making it a popular destination for anglers. You can buy a fishing permit from the campsite office or from one of the local tackle shops. The river is also a great place to relax and enjoy the peaceful surroundings, even if you're not a fisherman.
Website: Tollymore Forest Park Bookings
4. Causeway Coast Wigwams, County Antrim
Causeway Coast Wigwams is a unique campsite that offers a glamping experience. The campsite has plenty of facilities, including hot showers, toilets, and a campsite shop. The wigwams themselves are cozy and comfortable, with plenty of space for families or groups of friends.
Things to do a Causeway Coast Wigwams
1. Hiking Trails
If you love hiking, then Causeway Coast Wigwams is the perfect destination for you. The campsite is situated near some of the most beautiful hiking trails in Northern Ireland. Here are some of the best hiking trails to explore:
The Causeway Coastal Route: This is a must-visit for anyone who loves hiking. The route stretches for 120 miles along the stunning Causeway Coastline, and it offers breathtaking views of the coast and the countryside.
The Antrim Hills Way: This 22-mile trail takes you through the heart of the Antrim Hills and offers stunning views of the surrounding countryside.
The Glens of Antrim: The Glens of Antrim is a collection of nine glens that offer a range of walking trails, from easy walks to more challenging hikes.
No matter which trail you choose, you are sure to be amazed by the stunning scenery and natural beauty of the area.
2. Adventure Activities
If you are looking for a bit more excitement, then Causeway Coast Wigwams also offers a range of adventure activities. Here are some of the best adventure activities to try:
Coasteering: Coasteering is a popular activity that involves climbing, jumping, and swimming along the coast. It is a great way to explore the rugged coastline and experience the thrill of adventure.
Surfing: Northern Ireland is becoming a popular destination for surfing, and Causeway Coast Wigwams is located near some of the best surf spots in the area. Whether you are a beginner or an experienced surfer, there are plenty of opportunities to catch some waves.
Sea Kayaking: Sea kayaking is a great way to explore the stunning coastline of County Antrim. It is a peaceful and eco-friendly way to experience the beauty of the area. With experienced guides and top-quality equipment provided by Causeway Coast Adventures, you can explore hidden coves, sea caves, and breathtaking cliffs. It is a perfect activity for families, couples, or groups looking to create unforgettable memories.