One more day and it will be spring, how very exciting!
Well, in the calendar, that is, at least, so this is a good time to start pondering on day trips we would be able to take now that the weather is a bit warmer.
Chill.ie have challenged me to come up with a list of #hiddendrives within Northern Ireland and although I’m not sure the things I have in mind are very secretive, they are still worth a visit at this time of the year.
We are members of the National Trust and a trip to Mount Stewart in spring is as close as you can come to heaven! The drive to Mount Stewart, located on the shores of Strangford Lough in County Down, takes only 30 minutes from Belfast and it is a lovely journey. Following a three year £8 million restoration programme, this 19th- century house has been significantly transformed, making it a must-see attraction on the island of Ireland.
In 2017, Mount Stewart will unveil the newly restored Central Hall floor and stunning Rome bedroom. There will be opportunities to see collections of international and national significance and one of the most significant silver displays in the Trust’s care. Exquisite family collections will be on show including works by Lawrence, Brock and Stubbs. Visitors will have the opportunity to explore this wonderful home at their leisure or by guided tour to learn more about the Londonderry family and the important role they played in local and international history.
This coming weekend Mount Stewart will celebrate the World Book Day and it will also see the official opening of The Magic Ink Pot play park so if you’re like us, fed up of being cooped up indoors, do use the opportunity and come out for some fun and exercise!
Another drive both Emma and I really enjoy is the Antrim Coast.
We live very close to Whitehead so it is really within our reach and the lighthouse walk is invigorating and offers some stunning views on a sunny day.
Something I’d really love doing, once it opens again for the season, is The Gobbins cliff path walk. It is a bit steeper that the Whitehead one and consequently, only opened for grown ups. Again, it is really close to where we live and it is something I think I will enjoy with a friend.
But the ultimate drive for this spring will be going to visit the North Coast and places we haven’t seen yet! We are both familiar with the Giant’s Causeway and the Carrick-A-Rede rope bridge and again, as members of the National Trust, we will be able to visit them at any point we desire but we haven’t yet visited the Dark Hedges and I do think Emma would enjoy a visit there this year. Visiting the North Coast requires a day trip and if you have the time, possibly an overnight stay, as there is so much to see and do!
What are your plans for this spring? And what would you like to visit with your little ones?
Disclosure: I was compensated for my time in putting together this post but all opinions expressed are entirely my own.