I took a little inspiration from a couple of wonderful bloggers and decided I was going to explore a little more of Northern Ireland, especially areas near me that I had never really appreciated before. The sun was shining this week and the temperatures soared so there was definitely no excuse for me not to get out and adventure.
Shaw’s Bridge is a wonderful circular work along the edge of the River Lagan with a lot of beautiful views and tarmaced paths. If you continue on it long enough you will also reach the Lock Keepers cottage which I plan to visit the next time I am down.
We did about a 3-mile walk, and the fresh air did absolute wonders for my headache and sore stomach. We brought along my mum’s partners dog Roxy that he was dog sitting and she was not only a great distraction but great motivation to do the full walk.
Watch out for cyclists on this route, there was a ton of them, some with bells and some without so keep your ears open and stick to one side of the path if possible. The beautiful views up and down the river coupled with the variety of flowers, trees and secret paths makes this route just a pleasure. It feels a lot longer than it really is but every moment was enjoyable and I loved stopping to take photos and to chat to other walkers along the way.
Dogs are to be on leads but we met a lot that were off leads, so if your dog isn’t great with other dogs just keep an eye out. Most owners were very good and clipped their leads back on before continuing on towards us, but there was one point in the evening that I was tangled up in a flexilead! You definitely had to be there to see it. Also be warned there are absolutely NO bins along this whole route! So, if your dog poo’s then you will have to carry the poo bag till you reach the end of the towpath. There was a couple of poo bags we noticed left along the sides of the path or tied to the fences so just be aware where you are stepping or if you have kids where they are running.
The path was good and dry but can get mucky during the rain and the winter so don’t forget to bring your wellies! There are a couple of spots along the way where you can walk down to the water to allow your pup to get a drink or have a swim as well!
There are also two separate carparks along the path if you wanted to drive down and bring a picnic, as there are plenty of benches and some lovely open pieces of grass which would perfect!
We even made some friends with the local cows though they definitely seemed more interested in Roxy the dog than they were of me and my big camera!
I would definitely recommend this route for anyone looking to go on a lovely scenic walk! There are audio guides which you can download on your phone and though maybe not as much interaction for kids it’s a great place to just get lost for a little while and really just enjoy yourself whilst getting that little bit of exercise.
Where do you like to go walking?