Best Dog Walks in Northern Ireland

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Time to 'paws' and discover some of our favourite dog friendly trails in Northern Ireland

When it comes to getting out for a walk with your dog, do you find yourself walking the same trails each week? We have pulled together a list of some our favourite dog friendly trails in Northern Ireland sure to get their tails wagging! From the sights and smells of the forest to wide open parks, there is a walk for pooches big and small.

Connswater Community Greenway, Co. Antrim
A fantastic urban walk through East Belfast. This trail that begins at Victoria Park with the option of branching off to finish at the Braniel or Cregagh Glen. A popular choice for local dogs and their humans, the Greenway can be enjoyed in full or in sections with many loop walk options around the open park areas such as Orangefield Park. Dogs are allowed but must be kept on a lead.

Tom’s Island Walk – Castle Archdale, Co. Fermanagh
The circular walk to Tom’s Island showcases the best of Castle Archdale Forest. The path meanders through deep woodland containing a delightful mixture of coniferous and broadleaved trees. Skirting the shores of Lower Lough Erne be sure to stop at the picnic or resting areas on Tom’s Island to enjoy the panoramic views over the lake towards White Island and Davy’s Island. Dogs are allowed but must be kept on a lead.

Drumnaph Woodland Trail, Co. Derry~Londonderry
This Community Nature Reserve trail offers a choice of three walking trails. The woodland contains a mixture of ancient and newly planted trees as well as some wetland habitats. Walkers are also in for a treat in the summer months as a patchwork of wildflower meadows spring up. Dogs are allowed but must be kept on a lead.

Drumkeeragh Forest, Co. Down
Offering panoramic views of Slieve Croob, the Mourne Mountains and the rolling hills of the County Down countryside Drumkeeragh Forest offers 20km (12.4 miles) of waymarked trails exploring the forest. Choose from three unique trails of varying length and grade. Please note: These trails are multi-use for walkers, cyclists and horse-riders so please exercise appropriate caution and respect other trail users. Dogs are allowed but must be kept on a lead.

Terrace Hill Trail, Co. Antrim
An enjoyable sculpture trail that follows the path from Minnowburn Bridge upstream past a pond and 1930s walled garden. Fantastic views are afforded from the Terrace Hill Garden of the Lagan Valley. Please Note: This walk crosses agricultural land in parts. There are two fields in which you may encounter stock grazing. Always close gates behind you and keep dogs under control.

Gortin Forest – Pollan Trail, Co. Tyrone
One of serval walks you can enjoy with your dog through this regenerated forest park. This pleasant and rewarding trail follows up the course of the Pollan Burn as it tumbles down the mountainside. Stop, for a few minutes at the waterfall and enjoy the beauty that centuries of water have carved in the solid rock. Continue on through forests of Lodgepole Pine and Sitka Spruce before returning to the car park through Japanese larch planted in 1940. Dogs are allowed but must be kept on a lead.

Quoile River Walk, Co. Down
A hidden gem, this walk takes your from the busy town of Downpatrick past the historic Mound of Down to quiet trails along the banks of the Quoile River. Dogs are allowed but must be kept on a lead.

Moydamlagh Forest, Co. Derry~Londonderry
Offering a variety of trails of varying lengths and challenges. The short and medium circular trails lead you through conifer forest on a climb on the lower slopes of Mullaghmore. Those looking more of a challenge can follow the Eagle’s Rock trail a tough mostly uphill walk rewarding walkers with fantastic views.

Where is your favourite place to walk with your dog? Share pictures of you and your pooch out on the trail on social media using #WalkNI

WalkNI are encouraging dog walkers to stay on the #RightSideOfOutside.

Avoid mountainous or farmland walks where livestock are present
The presence of a dog, even one that’s on a lead, can cause stress to sheep, particularly during lambing season. When dogs are off their leads, the risks are even greater with sheep potentially being chased, injured or killed. We would also kindly ask you to keep your dog on a lead in these areas to minimise the disturbance to wildlife.

Bring your dog waste home with you
Nothing spoils the look of the outdoors quicker than dog poop bags hanging from a tree. It also sets a precedent for others coming behind you to do the same. Let’s not spoil everyone’s visit and bring it home with you.

Click here for more top tips to stay on the #RightSideOfOutside.

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