Giant’s Ring Trail
A green oasis in the heart of the city of Belfast, Minnowburn is full of beautiful trails verging the Lagan or heading through woodland and farmland. It lies in the Lagan Valley Regional Park and is a great place to walk through fields alive with the sounds and smells of nature, or stroll along the banks of the Lagan and Minnowburn. You may spot spawning salmon or sea trout.
As you leave National Trust lands and enter Ballynahatty you pass through the famous Giants Ring, a Neolithic earthwork circle set in the middle of beautiful farmland.
Distance 1.5 miles
OS Map Sheet 15
Terrain Dirt, gravel & wooden boardwalk
Nearest Town Belfast
Route Shape Circular
Grid Reference J325686
Route Type Riverside, Woodland
From the car park, follow the Lagan riverbank path upstream. After about 656 feet (200 metres), take the first path you come to on the left-hand side. Follow this path, cross the Edenderry Road and continue on with the mature woodland on your left. You’ll enter young, broadleaved woodland. Carry on until you reach the Ballynahatty Road. Cross the road and take the path opposite. Follow the path which has fields on either side for about half a mile (1 kilometre), until you reach the Giant’s Ring. After exploring the Ring, make your way out through the gate at the opposite side from which you arrived. Pass through the car park and carry on down the avenue until you reach the road. Cross the road, taking care to watch out for traffic, and climb over the stile opposite. You’re now in the Sandpit Field, a marvellous natural amphitheatre that was carved by retreating glaciers during the last Ice Age.
Follow the track around the top of the big pit until you come to a stile beside a road. Climb over the stile and cross the road. Go through the pedestrian gate opposite, follow the path through a second gate and continue on the old tarmac path up Terrace Hill. This path used to be the main avenue to Terrace Hill house, in spring the bank on the left is filled with daffodils and bluebells. Carry on until you reach the garden. Once you’ve explored this magical place go back the way you came and take the path on the left, leading downhill through a young woodland. Follow the path until you reach the Minnowburn River; here you’ll walk along the banks of the river downstream until you reach Minnowburn Bridge and the car park beyond.
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 please keep dogs under control.
Minnowburn Bridge, Giants Ring
Minnowburn is just off the Ring Road next to Shaw’s bridge. Follow the signs.
Translink – journeyplanner.translink.co.uk
Dogs are allowed but must be kept under control.
Toilet and refreshments nearby at Barnett’s Demesne or Forestside Shopping centre. Also free car parking, viewing point and canoe landing. Leaflets are available. The following facilities are available for users with limited mobility: – Disabled toilets
- There may not be a formalised path, and variable, single file trails are to be expected.
- Gradients and cross slope could be expected to be steep and not limited.
- Obstacles and surface breaks of greater than 75mm measured across the line of the path to be expected.
- Overhanging branches are possible. Passing places and rest areas may not be formalised or provided.