Experience fascinating places and our warm welcome like never before in Ards and North Down.

***With restrictions in Northern Ireland beginning to ease we ask that individuals plan ahead and please check local guidelines on the NI Direct website ***

Click here for the main Experience page .You can also experience our wide open spaces, charming towns and captivating history on a guided walking tour, find out more on our Summer Guided Walking Tours page.


SUP and Soda - £50pp
RESCHEDULED DATE Sun 13 June 2021, 1pm - 3.30pm 
Meeting point: Green Boat Shed, Whiterock, Killinchy

Leave your stresses on the shoreline and immerse yourself in the tranquillity of Strangford Lough as you paddleboard from Whiterock to Ballymorran.  See the seals, hear the history, before stepping into the warmth of a traditional Irish thatched cottage to enjoy freshly griddled soda bread, egg and sausage. (A vegetarian option will be available) After a cosy chat around the cottage kitchen table it will be back 'on board' to return to Whiterock. This experience promises you completely switch off and immerse yourself in the beauty of Strangford Lough. You will burn off the calories on your way home.

Your instructor will brief you on the basics of paddle boarding before you go afloat. After mastering the technique we will undertake a journey across the bay to Tracey’s Farmhouse kitchen.

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What’s provided: 2hrs Stand up paddleboading tuition and tour | paddleboards | paddle and leash | wetsuit and buoyancy aid. What to bring: Wear swimwear under your clothes | Towel and old trainers/water shoes | Hat and sun protection (here’s hoping!)

Booking fee applies |Suitable for beginners | All equipment provided | 12+ years | Anyone under 18 must be accompanied by an adult | Please make us aware of any dietary requirements by one week prior to the experience by emailing ardsvic@ardsandnorthdown.gov.uk

Paddle the Port - £50pp
Friday 18 June | 6.30pm - 8.30pm | Meeting point: The Slip Inn, Portaferry (July and August date also available - Friday 9 July and Friday 20 August)

Join us for this new kayaking experience on Strangford Lough.  The team from Mobile Team Adventure will guide you through this evening paddle.  Take in the beauty of your surroundings and let go of a busy week!  Learn about the history of the Port while on the water!  After, Mary will welcome you to the Slip Inn where the craic will continue over a tasty bowl of homemade chowder or vegetable soup.  The fun doesn't stop there, Mary and her team will teach you how to make the perfect Irish coffee or pour your own pint of Guinness.  This experience will take you to the heart of Portaferry and the warmth of it's people.

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Booking fee applies | Suitable for beginners | All equipment provided | 18+ years | Please make us aware of any dietary requirements by 12 June 2021 emailing ardsvic@ardsandnorthdown.gov.uk | Clothing: wear comfortable clothing. We don't plan on getting wet but bring a change just in case.

If you wish to make a weekend of it the Portaferry Hotel are offering a special accommodation rate for all ticket holders.  Please contact the team directly on 028 4272 8231.

SUP and Sip - £30pp - SOLD OUT
RESCHEDULED DATE Sunday 20 June, 4pm | Meeting point: Donaghadee

Join us in Donaghadee for an early evening paddle.  Enjoy the view of the Copelands, hear tales about the local area and hopefully see some of the resident wildlife as you glide along Belfast Lough.  Iain your instructor will take you through the basics of paddleboarding and ensure that have fun. After a 90 minute paddle you will be welcomed into Pier 36 for a drink and chat. Sounds like the perfect way to spend a Sunday afternoon.

Book now - SOLD OUT

Booking fee applies |Suitable for beginners | All equipment provided | 18+ years | A choice of drinks will be available

Grow and Graze 
Thursday 24 June | 10am | £30pp | Meeting point: Castle Espie Reception (August and September date also available 14 August and 11 September)

Enjoy a unique day out with Tracey’s Farmhouse Kitchen and Castle Espie Wetland Centre. Learn how to ‘grow your own’ then reap the benefits in the kitchen!

Join our expert Gardening team at the Gardener’s Bothy in Castle Espie and learn how to grow your own and take care of your garden in an environmentally friendly way.  The session will be followed by a traditional Irish bread making experience with Tracey from Tracey’s Farmhouse Kitchen, using heritage apples picked from the orchard at Castle Espie. Have you ever tried a delicious local sweet treat - Potato Apple Cake or Pirrie Apple Pie as the Ulster Scots called it? Now is your chance! Roll up your sleeves and allow Tracey to help you make your own Potato Apple Cake, using only a few ingredients which will all be from the local area.
Enjoy your delicious home baked treat with tea or coffee, whilst you relax and take in breath-taking views over Strangford Lough, and end your day with a relaxing walk around the Castle Espie reserve. (Access to reserve for remainder of the day will be included with cost) | Please make us aware of any dietary requirements by 17 June 2021 emailing ardsvic@ardsandnorthdown.gov.uk | Booking fee applies.

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SUP-aoke - £30pp 
Friday 25 June | 7pm | Meeting point: Bangor Marina (August date also available Friday 20 August)

Like paddling?  Like singing?  Yes... then you will love this experience.

Iain from SuphubNI will guide you through a fun paddle board session that will take you out onto Belfast Lough.  You will paddle out to a floating platform and climb aboard and the stage is yours!! Sing your favourite song and enjoy the craic.  Let the seals and wildlife  be your audience in the this fun experience.  Iain will video your big moment if you wish - so that you can share this once in a lifetime experience with your friends.

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Booking fee applies |Suitable for beginners | All equipment provided | 18+ years | *You will be required to let the organiser know which song you would like to sing one week in advance!

Canoe and Cake - £50pp SPECIAL PRICE FOR JUNE
RESCHEDULED DATE Sunday 27 June 2021 | 2pm | Meeting point: Tracey's Farmhouse Kitchen, Co Down, BT23 6UD

Enjoy the beauty of Strangford Lough from your own canoe and relax in the serenity of your surroundings before tucking into tasty treats in a magnificent traditional Irish thatched cottage.

Sitting in the warmth of the cottage kitchen you will be treated to a demonstration of soda bread making. The table will be laden with Tracey’s homemade jams and handmade award-winning butter and of course cake! Bring an appetite! As you enjoy the delights on the table Tracey will bake soda bread on the griddle. Get involved or sit back and get some tips. You will even get to take home some soda bread to remember a fantastic afternoon.

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Booking fee applies | Suitable for beginners | All equipment provided | 10+ years | Anyone under 18 must be accompanied by an adult | Please make us aware of any dietary requirements by 20 June 2021 emailing ardsvic@ardsandnorthdown.gov.uk

 Please note:
*All providers will adhere to social distancing guidelines in accordance with government advice on the Covid 19 pandemic.
**These experiences may be subject to change or cancellation due to Covid 19 restrictions and guidelines. Any events cancelled by the organiser, under all circumstances, will be fully refundable.  We will contact you as soon as we know an event has been cancelled and refund the ticket price and any booking fees.
***Photos and/or video footage may be taken during these events. All events and activities are subject to change and may be weather dependent – best efforts will be made to inform you of any changes.