Northern Ireland is a country that’s blessed with scenic coastlines, rolling hills and steeped in history which makes it an ideal location for your next camping trip. There are lots of camping sites dotted across the country, so which one should you choose? Here is our guide to the 6 best camping spots Northern Ireland has to offer. Check them out for yourself and see if you agree.
Situated on Northern Ireland’s famous North West coast (think Giant’s Causeway), the Carrick Dhu caravan and camping site offers visitors a perfect mix of coastal relaxation with the option of taking in some tourist activities as well. Located right in the middle of the main tourist towns of Portrush and Portstewart and on the edge of the Ballyreagh golf course you will be ideally situated for this coastal camping experience. If you are travelling with kids then Portrush has lots of family friendly entertainment including fun fairs, amusements, sandy beaches and surf lessons. If you’re feeling brave you could even take on the famous Carrick-a-Rede rope bridge which is lots of fun but not for the faint hearted.
Gosford Forest Park
Moving inland now, Gosford forest park offers you something a little different than the coastal break of Carrick Dhu. Located in County Armagh Gosford has become famous in recent years as the external location of much of the Game of Thrones series. When you get there it’s easy to see why as it boasts a stunning castle which is surrounded by a forest full of animals and hiking treks. There is lots to do in Gosford as well, there are animal enclosures filled with all sorts of wildlife from pheasants and ducks to deer and stags. When you camp in Gosford you will feel like you are in another world, one set apart from the hustle and bustle of modern life. If you are looking for a remote getaway where walks in nature are the order of the day, then Gosford Forest Park is the place for you.
Now for something a little different. We all know how popular glamping has become in recent years and at Tepee Valley they’ve got it down to a fine art. Located not far from Gosford Forest Park in County Armagh, Tepee Valley is the perfect choice for those who want a back to basics camping experience but still enjoy a few home comforts at the same time. As the name suggests you can stay in Native American style tepees, tepee shaped ‘festy tents’, traditional yurts a shepherd’s hut and even a gypsy caravan. With this campsite you’re guaranteed something a little different so if you’re used to the typical camping sites and want to experience something new then it’s well worth checking Tepee Valley out.
This campsite can be found at the foot of the beautiful Mourne Mountains in the South-Eastern coast of Northern Ireland. Campers are just minutes away from the village of Rostrevor and the stunning Carlingford Lough. The campsite is surrounded 97 acres of parklands where you and your family can explore until your hearts content. The camp itself is full of family friendly facilities to keep you entertained including tennis courts, play parks and very popular barbeque areas. There’s a real communal feel to Kilbroney Park so if you’re looking for an immersive camping experience where you can get to know your neighbours then this is a great option for you.
Lough Erne Canoe Trail
There are few more scenic locations in Northern Ireland than Lough Erne. Located in the Western County of Fermanagh it’s home to a number of magnificent 5-star hotels but it’s also a much sought after camping location. The Lough Erne Canoe Trail is a great way to explore the lough and its surrounding areas while having fun as well as getting a great workout. There are 7 different canoe trails to choose from and there are also guided tours where a qualified instructor will give you some pointers while educating you on the historical sites that you pass on the way. The camping experience is perfect for those who want to pitch their tent and get on with the activities. There are no frills which is perfect if the idea of glamping doesn’t really appeal to you. If you are an aquatic enthusiast, then this is sure to be the choice for you.
East Coast Adventure Centre
Our second glamping option is the East Coast Adventure Centre located in County Down, once again near the Mourne Mountain range. As the name suggests this is an all action family themed adventure park where you can visit centres for mountain biking and water sports, partake in archery, assault courses, zip wires, the list really does go on. If you are an active family looking for adrenaline filled adventure, then you can’t go wrong with the East Coast Adventure Centre. The glamping pods are also amazing. They can accommodate a family of 4 and come with fully working electricity and heating. There are also traditional tent camping options as well if you feel the need to keep the experience more real.
Written by Stuart Cooke of Uni Baggage, door to door luggage delivery specialists for travellers all around the world.
A seasoned camper and hiker, there is nothing he doesn’t know about the Great Outdoors. Hiking alone, with friends, or even little ones, he’s done it all. A trained survivalist, he gives Bear Grylls a run for his money.