If you’d like to get some moderate to challenging trail running on open heath land with great views, head a few miles west of central Belfast to Divis and the Black Mountain There are a number of walking trails in this National Trust, on generally open land with hilly terrain. There are two specified walking ‘loops’, with detailed directions: The Black Mountain Ridge Trail is a more moderate 6.7 km (4.2 mile) loop, with great views if the city, the Antrim Plateau to the north, Scotland to the east and Mourne Mountains to the south. See the link for step-by step directions. Especially beautiful in the fall, when purple-coloured Devil’s-bit scabious carpets much of the landscape.
More challenging is the Divis and the Black Mountain summit trail, which is a steeper but shorter 4.8 km/3 mile loop trail. The route starts along the Tipperary Road through open heath and blanket bog following a way-marked trail to the highest peak in the Belfast Hills.
Bonus: anchor point is The Barn coffee shop!