National Route 99 travels around Strangford Loch providing a link between Belfast, Comber, Downpatrick and Newcastle. Strangford Lough is an area of outstanding natural beauty in County Down, Northern Ireland. The route travels through a variety of landscapes along quiet country roads, with some traffic-free sections. The section between Belfast's new Titanic Quarter development and Comber is all along a newly developed greenway.
The section on Ards Penisula offers spectacular coastal views of the Irish sea where Scotland and the Isle of Man are visible on clear days. The route travels through Portavogie and past the National Trust protected village of Kearney before reaching Portaferry. After a short ferry crossing to Strangford village the trail continues through Castle Ward estate. The trail runs to Downpatrick before heading up the western shore of the Lough to Newtownards via Scrabo where rewarding panoramic views of the Lough await.
Distance: 110 miles
Type: Quiet country roads and some traffic-free sections
Things to see and do
- In Belfast make sure you visit the new Titanic Quarter, one of the world’s largest urban-waterfront regeneration projects.
- Kearney has been restored by the National Trust to give the authenticity of a traditional fishing village.
- Castle Ward is an 18th-century mansion at Strangford that has 820 acre grounds. They run lots of activites and events which children and adults will love.
- Murlough National Nature Reserve
This area map shows the National Cycle Network and local routes in this area.
National Route 99 of the National Cycle Network traverses the Ards peninsula in Co Down, skirts the southern shores of Strangford Lough and down to Newcastle, Co Down.