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Quality Walk

Island Hill & North Strangford Nature Reserve

Accessible at low-tide, this walk around Rough Island provides magnificent views of Strangford Lough and is an excellent view point for bird watching.




1.5 miles

OS Map

Sheet 21

Nearest Town

Comber, Newtownards

Route Shape


Route Type

Beach, Coastal


Flat, grass and stoney paths

Grid Reference (Start)


Grid Reference (End)


Point of Interest

Wildfowl and magnificent Lough views, totem poll

Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty

Strangford Lough

Route Description

Follow the path from the car park, along the concrete causeway (only accessible at low tide) and around Rough Island, before returning over the causeway. Explore the island itself!

Island Hill is situated at the upper end of Strangford Lough and has excellent views across the Lough and towards Scrabo Tower.

A good tide predictor website is Easytide (see link below). As Island Hill doesnt have its own tide location, use the Belfast low water time and then add 2hrs 15 minutes for Island Hill. So follow the link below, use the tables to locate the low water time for Belfast and add 2hrs 15mins. An example being if low water at Belfast is 14.48, for Island Hill low water would be at 17.03.


Getting to the Start (by Public Transport)

Translink - journeyplanner.translink.co.uk

Getting to the Start (by Car)

Turn off the A21 Comber to Newtownards Road towards the shore of the Lough. Follow the signposts to Island Hill Nature Reserve, continue along the Ringcreevy Road for approximately 1 mile.


Dogs are allowed. Dogs should be kept on leads at all times

Accessibility Grade

Grade 5

Accessible Facilities

The following facilities are available for users with limited mobility:

Disabled toilets with RADAR key
Disabled parking


Ample car parking, toilets and picnic tables



Publication Availability


Walk Location
Map of Northern Ireland
Image Gallery

Ratings and Comments

Ruth 31 March, 2015 @ 13:16

Enjoyed a walk around the island a few days ago. I was wondering how to predict tides to avoid a wasted journey for another visit?

SHEILA 16 September, 2014 @ 23:20

A lovely walk which only takes 20 minutes from the car ark and right around the island and back.

james and yaz 23 February, 2014 @ 21:38

we walk our two dogs on the lead at island hill quite a lot and lift anything that they leave behind if more people would do this it would be much more enjoyable we have started to walk around the shore as its safer as reguards walking in dog dirt on the path other than that it is a beautiful and satisfying walk

stuart 16 February, 2014 @ 17:27

Living in Newtownards close to this underrated attraction is fantastic. it is rarely busy or overcrowded. I took the family along with an energetic labrador round this beautiful walk this morning. It was a lovely spring day (unlike the weather we have been having the last mont), The tide was out in the lough so we walked around the island on the beach not the island walk. the dog loved the random sprints into the lough water chasing after his ball while we walked round the beach in the warm spring like sunshine. This is a real we gem of a walk and natural beauty spot.

Pat Gordon 20 April, 2009 @ 16:20

After many travels via Comber discovered Island Hill t0-day and had a wonderful walk across the causeway and round the island. On my list now of enjoyable walks.

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