As Ireland’s second-largest province, it’s no surprise that Ulster offers plenty to keep residents and visitors entertained. Those looking for suitably exciting diversions are spoilt for choice, with everything from casinos to cocktail bars to help them enjoy their free time.
One city that has an awful lot to offer is Newry. Sited 34 miles from Belfast and 67 miles from Dublin, it’s ideally located for those wanting to make the most of a trip to Northern Ireland, whether they’re visiting from abroad or travelling from closer to home.
Here are three of the best things to do if you’re ever lucky enough to pay it a visit.
Take a hike up Slieve Gullion
Newry is an area known for its outstanding natural beauty, and that’s largely thanks to the towering Slieve Gullion. Nestling nearby, this lush green landscape is a hiker’s paradise, with a network of mountain walks, forest trails, and country roads crisscrossing it and make it eminently easy to explore. The area centres around the heather-strewn hills of a circular ring dyke volcano, which formed the breathtaking Ring of Gullion around 50 million years ago. Creating a rich and verdant environment that is today home to an array of wildlife, it’s the perfect place to spot all manner of native animals. For history lovers, a stop at the mountain’s Neolithic burial site, which features over 20 large stone tombs, is also a must.
Gamble the evening away at Casino Palace
If you’d like to try something a little out of the ordinary during your trip to Newry, step out of your comfort zone by visiting Casino Palace. This glamorous gambling den is instantly recognisable courtesy of the two Grecian-inspired statues that stand to either side of its door. Hiding an array of games inside, it’s a great place to spend an evening, although we would recommend getting a grasp of how it all works beforehand. Online providers like Paddy Power are the perfect place to do this, as they offer a huge variety of branded games and online slots to try your hand at, including live versions of everything from poker through to blackjack. This means that by the time you’re playing in front of an audience, you should have some seriously impressive skills to show off.
Visit Bagenal’s Castle and Castle Ward
If you have a taste for history and culture, Bagenal’s Castle should also be included in your itinerary. Hidden and forgotten about for centuries, it was rediscovered and restored through a painstaking process in 1996. Now standing tall and proud once more, its 16th-century tower and 19th-century warehouse act as a museum-cum-tourist office, meaning that visitors have the perfect opportunity to explore this historic interior. If this is not enough to sate your appetite for learning more about the area’s past, you can hop in your car once you’re finished and visit the nearby Castle Ward. Ancient and beautiful, it featured in HBO TV series Game of Thrones as the iconic stronghold of House Stark – Winterfell.
Isn’t it time you enjoyed Newry’s many delights for yourself? Pay it a visit soon and make sure that these three fantastic locations feature on your itinerary.