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County Down, A Country Within A County.

Updated on April 5, 2011

Belfast

Street shopping in Belfast
Street shopping in Belfast

St Patrick's Cross

The stunningly wild and beautiful Mourne mountains
The stunningly wild and beautiful Mourne mountains
Part of the Promenade at Newcastle
Part of the Promenade at Newcastle
This years date for the famous Balmoral Show.
This years date for the famous Balmoral Show.
Typical Irish Pub
Typical Irish Pub
Shamrock
Shamrock

My County.

What can I tell you about County Down on the east coast of Northern Ireland? I can put my hand on my heart, and truthfully tell you that it is as diverse as you want it to be, it is wild and beautiful. There are forests and mountain ranges, sandy beaches and loughs, history and culture, and the friendliest people on earth.

I moved to Northern Ireland sixteen years ago, and instantly fell in love with the county and it's people. County Down is known as "Little Ireland", because of it's very nature, resembles something of all the counties in Ireland; as an island.

Stunning countryside of small farms separating land with the old traditional dry stone walls. Beautiful park lands and forests to lose yourself in, and take the time to get back in touch with nature. Soft white sandy beaches where you can still expect not to see another living soul in sight, or if you prefer, you can join the bucket and spade brigade on a busier beach. Smelling of sun tan oil and full of day trippers eating the famous Maud's ice cream, or fish and chips.

Stunning city's such as Belfast and Lisburn; full of architecture and a superb choice of high street shopping. Night life from clubs and disco's to the quaint typical Irish pub with the Irish music of ballads and knee slapping, and if that is not choice enough, join the theatre to watch splendid shows and musicals; or visit the casino to while your money away, and if all else fails to please, catch the latest film showing in the cinema.

County Down is not short of sports either, with fabulous golf clubs, horse riding, white water rafting, surfing, clay pigeon shooting, bowls and bowling or simply walking along the coast, or inland in the stunningly landscaped parks.

Quaint markets, such as St. George's market in Belfast. Farmers markets and craft markets, car boot sales and auction rooms, National Trust properties or agricultural shows, they are all here to be enjoyed.

As diverse as the scenery, we have restaurants to serve every taste and pubs from theme pubs to the oldest pub in Ireland, situated in Belfast city. We have the patron saint of Northern Ireland, St Patrick's cross in Downpatrick, with numerous landmarks to honour his existence. Fascinating church's and church ruins, castles and manor houses. In fact I can not think of anything that we do not have.

Bands and parades to delight the spectator, horse racing and greyhound racing to tickle gambling taste buds. Dancing and outdoor music to listen to the fiddle and flute. Quad bike racing and speedway racing to enthral the spectators and of course the most famous event of the year, The Balmoral Show.

In addition there are bird wet lands, Belfast Zoo and Botanic Gardens. Museums, to suit everyone including Cultra with it's delightful show of old Irish living, and rare breeds society. In fact County Down has it all.

This is a place to visit in winter or summer. Winter months are usually mild, but wet. Summer months are usually mild and wet, but hey, that is why we have such beautiful green countryside. County Down is well worth a visit if only for the black stuff, a good pint of Guinness and in March, the shamrock.

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    • profile image

      femmeflashpoint 

      6 years ago

      Irish,

      This makes for a great tour!!

      Although I tend to have a nearly acid dislike of skinny-tire bikes, I can see myself succumbing to the need, breaking down and buying one to ride the spot in the pic you posted of the Promenade at Newcastle.

      Of course, I'm already equipped for a ride in the Mourne Mountains area. Well, my BIKE is, lol. I, on the other hand, might not manage so well with steep climbs. I tend to keep to the more flat and faster stuff.

      I suppose, if the climb got too steep, I could pass my camera to one of the guys and say, "Don't forget to take pics on your way up .... "

      You live in beautiful country, Irish. I'm thinking, if I were there, I'd never get a thing done. I'd be outside playing all the time. :)

      femme

    • thebluestar profile imageAUTHOR

      Annette Donaldson 

      6 years ago from Northern Ireland

      Ghaelach, thank you so much for stopping by. Believe it or not we have much in common. I was born and brought up most of my life in Southport, so close to Preston, but moved into the Republic initially 23 years ago. I have lived in Co. Down for 15 years and reside here with my partner of 14 years who is Irish by birth.

      I shall definitely consider you a neighbour and will take a look at your view point of our glorious Ireland.

    • profile image

      Ghaelach 

      6 years ago

      Hi thebluestar.

      I love clicking on any hubber that writes about Ireland in paticually Co.Down. That's my birth place. Well aleast it should have been,but the problem was mum was over in Preston, Lancashire. Both my parents where born in Rostrevor. I don't suppose i need to tell you where it is but for our other hubbers it's between Kilkeel and Warrenpoint at the base of the Mourne Mountains where they sweep down to the sea.

      I've done a few hubs on N.Ireland, feel free to make a visit and leave some comments.

      I want to finish now and go back to your profile and do a follow and read some more.

      Take care and have a nice day.

      LOL Ghaelach

    • Mrs. J. B. profile image

      Mrs. J. B. 

      7 years ago from Southern California

      OHHHH YES YES YES.... Do one on the Irish Folk Dance... I love watching them... Send me your video!!!

    • thebluestar profile imageAUTHOR

      Annette Donaldson 

      7 years ago from Northern Ireland

      Hey Leelee glad you liked this wee hub. I am thinking of doing a follow up, more in depth of other places. x

    • Mrs. J. B. profile image

      Mrs. J. B. 

      7 years ago from Southern California

      Miss Nettie: Stand Up and take a bow!!!! This hub was perfection. So educational and informative. BRAVO!!!!!

    • thebluestar profile imageAUTHOR

      Annette Donaldson 

      7 years ago from Northern Ireland

      Thank you Terry. Your wife would love it, so would you. You would be in your element walking or riding the countryside. I will certainly e:mail you, would love to keep in touch.

    • Terry.Hirneisen profile image

      Terry.Hirneisen 

      7 years ago from Shenandoah Valley

      If I did not have so many critters I would bring my wife there for her birthday!! Sounds wonderful! This is a great piece and the tourism bureau should spot you some loot for such a favorable picture. Send me an email if you like. Mine is Terry.Hirneisen@gmail.com I have to run.

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