Here are some ideas to help you experience Ards and North Down from the comfort of your home
With enhanced restrictions in Northern Ireland for a 6-week period from Saturday 26 December, we have to stay safe and stay at home. However, we look forward to welcoming you back to discover all we have to offer when the time is right, in the meantime here are some ideas to experience the area from home.
For up to date information on restrictions please check the NI Executive website.
Virtual Visit Tours
Even though we can't travel at this time, you can still immerse yourself in some of the wonderful places and spaces we have in Ards and North Down by 360° virtual tours.
You can journey with us, virtually, discovering places you may not have visited before and adding them to your list for when we can travel again.
Ards Art Centre and North Down Museum
Even though Ards Arts Centre and North Down Museum are currently closed you are still able to enjoy some recent exhibitions online.
Ards Art Centre
'Fragments of Memory' by Millie Moore Artist. In the video you can enjoy a tour of the exhibition, a short artist's talk from Millie where she explains the inspiration behind her paintings and charcoal drawings made in response to reflections and memories of her daily walks during the first lockdown last Spring.
North Down Museum
The 'What We Wore' exhibition showcases the museum's small but fascinating clothing collection, it originally opened in The Long Gallery at the end of September 2020 and includes garments ranging from civic ceremonial robes to wedding dresses and children's clothes.
If you missed it here is the chance to view a virtual walkthrough of the exhibition along with some images and more detailed information on selected items.
Eden at Home, pottery decorating boxes are available to order via the website, you can pm, call or email.
- Choose the pieces for your box there's lots of choice, from mugs to plates, bowls and more.
- Confirm what theme you would like your sponge packs to be.
- Pick up, take home and enjoy creative fun. (A courier service can also be arranged).
Minimum four items per box, collection or courier service available to your address, box contents with exception of your pottery remain the property of Eden Pottery and are rented.
Moved by Nature Ards and North Down Big Calendar 2021
Provides inspiration to get outdoors, value our natural surroundings and encourages us to look after our emotional health and wellbeing. Even during lockdown this calendar has some lovely ideas to help you pause and connect with the nature around you.
Here are a few to get you started:
- Step outside, be still for 3 minutes and listen to your surroundings,
- Take part in the RSPB Big Garden Birdwatch on 29 – 31 January - Find out more on the RSPB website
- Listen to stories of coastal life around Strangford Lough from the people who live and work there, part of the legacy of the Turn O' The Tide Programme by Strangford Lough and Lecale Partnership. Listen now on YouTube
Developed as part of The Big Plan for Ards and North Down, you can read more about how it was developed and download from our News section
Mount Stewart History
Mount Stewart has been the home of the Stewart family, Marquesses of Londonderry for over 250 years. After a major restoration project, it now reflects the era when Charles, 7th Marquess of Londonderry, and his wife Edith, made it their much-loved Irish home from the 1920s to the 1950s.
Read more about the history of Mount Stewart, the beautiful rooms and treasures at the National Trust Mount Stewart website
Gardeners' tips: Hear from National Trust gardeners and get lots of gardening inspiration and ideas to make the most of your outdoor space from winter gardening inspiration, how you can help the birds to making your own compost.
Peter Rabbit™ activities and games to try at home: the National Trust have downloadable activity packs to for you to enjoy at home, the packs include puzzles, things to make and fun ideas to spark your imagination with your favourite Beatrix Potter characters. Get to know Peter and his friends with some baking, crafting and inspiration to keep the kids entertained.
Tracy's Home Coooking Online
Join Tracey in her Farmhouse Kitchen (via Zoom) where she'll be cooking her family favourites.
Dishes are very easy to follow and interactive. You can ask questions as Tracey guides you through the recipe. It’s the next best thing to being in her kitchen! You’ll get the recipes as soon as you register which will give you plenty of time to get your ingredients. Or you can choose to sit back, watch and enjoy the session then cook your dishes another time.You’ll soon be cooking lots of delicious savoury and sweet recipes, from meatloaf to apple and blackberry crumble and from carrot fritters to baked rice pudding.
The first session is Saturday 23 January from 5pm - 6pm. Sessions will take place twice a month.
Cost (includes recorded Zoom session and recipes) - £20. You’ll also have access to a closed Facebook group - “Tracey’s Home Cooking Sessions” where Tracey will share recipes, post about upcoming sessions and more.
We would love to feature any virtual or online experiences that would help people enjoy and experience Ards and North Down from home, please get in touch via email email@example.com