10 things to do in Northern Ireland   

Here are ten exciting things taking place 10 – 16 October 2022   


  1. Wild Atlantic Distillery. 20 Trienamongan Road, Aghyaran, Co Tyrone, Northren Ireland

    Fright Night, Moneymore, Co. Londonderry, 14 – 15 October. Enter the real-lifehorror movie spun in the depths of the ancient and haunted woodlands by a cast of nefarious and sordid creatures, telling tall tales to startle, bamboozle and scare even the most robust horror fans. Reloaded with a new spine-tingling story, the Woodland Trail makes a comeback at Fright Night 2022 with The Jungle NI. You will meet a range of unsettling characters along the way, with no telling where the next scare will come from. Keep your wits about you, there’s trouble lurking in the strangest of places. 

  2. Moira Speciality Food Fair, Moira, Co. Down, 15 October. Moira Speciality Food Fair returns to Moira Demesne this autumn and will once again showcase the rich food heritage and innovative producers of the village and wider region.You’ll meet farmers who are committed to sustainable farming methods and heritage breeds, vegetable growers working with the seasons and artisan producers using the best locally sourced ingredients to make exceptional foods for us all to enjoy. 
  3. Bushmills Salmon & Whiskey Festival, Bushmills, Co. Antrim, 15 – 16 October. The Salmon & Whiskey festival, which celebrates the local heritage and fine produce in the area, returns from 15th-16th of October. An array of fantastic entertainment and activities will spread across Bushmills Main Street, Millennium Park, Bushmills Distillery and The Salmon Fisheries.
  4. Ron Mueck Exhibition, Belfast, open now until 5 November. This is the first exhibition of Mueck’s work in Ireland and brings together seven of his key works including Dead Dad, 1997 and his monumental work In Bed, 2005. Located at TheMAC, book now for what will be a powerful exhibition of Mueck’s meticulously sculpted figures, from mini to mammoth, that act as psychological reflections of the human condition. 
  5. Oktoberfest Belfast, 13, 14, 15 October (More dates available). Every night they have an Oom-Pah band followed by a local live band, there are local radio presenters hosting and organising competitions to win prizes, and waitress service for your beer. Food-wise they have a traditional German swing grill perfectly cooking bratwurst and other lovely food over charcoal. 
  6. Scarecrow Parade, Hillsborough, Co. Down, open now until 13 November.Hillsborough Castle’s Scarecrow Parade is back! A dazzling array of Kings, Queens and Rulers have begun their reign in the Walled Garden. Who will you spot? Visit the Walled Garden at Hillsborough Castle during October and November to see a gathering of scarecrows made by local schools and community groups in partnership with local artists. 
  7. Look Up! An Autumn Night Sky Tour, Armagh, Co. Armagh, 15 – 16 October (More dates available).Produced by Armagh Observatory and Planetarium “Look Up!” is a seasonal tour around the night sky. Let the presenters guide you through the beautiful objects and constellations seen at this time of year. This show is ideal for anyone starting out in astronomy or interested in learning about what can be seen in the night sky. 
  8. Halloween Experience at Fermanagh Fun Farm, Lisbellaw, Co. Fermanagh, 15 – 31 October. Join in on the very popular Halloween experience. While you’re there, take a train ride out to the pumpkin field to choose your own pumpkin. Collect your pumpkin from the pumpkin patch to bring to the pumpkin carving shed. What creative design will you come up with? Go on a self-guided tour around the farm, feeding the animals while watching out for some spooky creatures hanging about. Or, join them at petscorner for a pet handling session. 
  9. Wild Atlantic Distillery Tour, Aghyaran, Co. Tyrone 14 October (More dates available). The distillery tour begins with a Wild Atlantic Irish Gin/Vodka & Tonic and a short talk that highlights the distillery story and traditional production methods. Tours are a combination of a Whiskey Distillery tour and a Gin & Vodka tour.
  10. Hidden Cuilcagh Hike, Florencecourt, Co. Fermanagh, 15 October.Join Geopark Guide, Helen Carleton, to explore some of the best kept secrets of Cuilcagh mountain such as the stunning Dry Valley. Hear about the true source of the mighty River Shannon and learn about the importance of the expansive blanket bog cloaking this huge swath of the Geopark and what is being done to protect it for future generations. (Note: The group will neither be hiking to the summit nor walking the boardwalk).

Booking is essential for most activities. Book in advance to avoid disappointment. Subject to availability.

Age Friendly Causeway unveils calendar of events for Positive Ageing Month

 Did you know that October is Positive Ageing Month?

To mark the occasion, Age Friendly Causeway has unveiled its inaugural Positive Ageing calendar packed with a fantastic variety of events which will take place throughout October.

The month-long campaign aims to celebrate the contribution of older people within our local communities while empowering them to lead full and active lives. It includes activities to suit all interests from guided walks, arts, sports and cultural activities to online training sessions and employment advice clinics.

Welcoming the initiative, the Mayor of Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council, Councillor Ivor Wallace said: “Through our Age-Friendly Programme we want to engrain the inclusion of older people in all aspects of community life, remove barriers to participation, ensure access to services and make sure this is an enjoyable place for older people to live.

“We want to achieve this by working with our partners, and it is thanks to this approach that we have been able to collate such a wide range of events which will be delivered throughout Positive Ageing Month.

“I would like to thank all those organisations and Council departments for collaborating on this calendar, and I hope it encourages our older residents to try something new and forge new friendships and connections throughout the month.”

Alan Sharp, Chairperson of Causeway Coast and Glens Age-Friendly Forum, said: “The pandemic has limited our participation in previous years but this programme has a wide-range of possibilities for you to enjoy including exercise opportunities, helpful information sessions, inter-generational exchanges and social occasions.

“Please let your friends know about what’s happening and bring them along to enjoy the fun as well. I hope that all of our older people will find Positive Ageing Month informative and helpful.”

You can browse the full calendar of events now by going to www.causewaycoastandglens.gov.uk/live/age-friendly or hard copies are available at Council offices and local libraries.

For more information, call the Age Friendly Causeway team on 028 777 60306 or email agefriendly@causewaycoastandglens.gov.uk

Booking for some of the events is essential, so please check with the individual venue.

Please note that event details in the brochure were correct at the time of going to print, however each event organiser reserves the right to make changes to the published programme. Please check with the individual venue before attending.

Belfast International Arts Festival sparkles this Autumn

Celebrating its milestone 60th edition, Northern Ireland’s leading contemporary multi-artform festival returns with compelling drama and dance, experimental genre-busting works, topical talks, the latest literary releases, classical music, folk and soul, independent film, contemporary visual arts and outdoor events.

From October 5 to November 6, over 300 uplifting, joyous and thought-provoking events will be hosted across Belfast.

BIAF22 opens on Wednesday 5 October with the UK premiere of Dinner With Groucho, a new play by renowned Irish writer Frank McGuinness. The cast features Ian Bartholomew (Geoff Metcalfe, Coronation Street), Ingrid Craigie (Mary, Blood; Rita, You Are Not My Mother) and Greg Hicks (title roles in Coriolanus, Hamlet, and Macbeth for Royal Shakespeare Company).

At the heart of this year’s programme is a special focus on Canada and the Middle East and North Africa. Canadian events include Vivek Shraya’s How to Fail as a Popstar (6 & 8 Oct), a reflection on the power of pop culture, dreams, disappointment and self-determination; the European premiere of The Queen In Me (18-19 Oct) from Teiya Kasahara 笠原貞野 (they/them) exploring the many ways that race, gender, and sexuality are policed in the opera industry; and closing the festival, the critically acclaimed Kiinalik: These Sharp Tools (4-5 Nov) bringing together two extraordinary artists to examine their intertwined histories, colonial legacies and the changing climate we all face.

The Middle East and North Africa strand includes Another Lover’s Discourse (22-23 Oct), a BIAF commissioned work from Palestinian interdisciplinary artist, Riham Isaac, described by English film director Danny Boyle as ‘a wonderful work, funny and touching and with some real surprises.’ Also making their Irish premiere appearances are Egyptian choreographer, Shaymaa Shoukry (13 Oct), Moroccan live performance and visual artist, Youness Atbane (15 Oct), and a special free outdoor circus and acrobatic visual treat by Moroccan artists in CS Lewis Square (15 Oct) in Belfast’s East. In the Black Box, A Night of Musical Journeys concert (14 Oct) features recently arrived refugees from across the Middle East.

Dance aficionados are in for a treat. BIAF’s first Featured Artist is leading young French choreographer, Noé Soulier, a rising figure in modern choreography, who brings a tremendous double bill (21-22 Oct) of experimental and emotional solo works to the MAC. Leading NI choreographer and dancer Oona Doherty’s largest project to date, Navy Blue (25-26 Oct), makes its Irish premiere and homecoming stop amid its European tour. Festival favourite Jan Martens makes a welcome return with his new solo Elisabeth Gets Her Way (28-29 Oct), a danced portrait of the Polish-born harpsichordist Elisabeth Chojnacka.

The first in a double bill of headline concerts at the Grand Opera House is the legendary Martin Hayes and his latest project, The Common Ground Ensemble, on Tues 25 October. The following night is hit-maker Paul Carrack, already close to selling out.

Among the wealth of home-grown talent is double Ivor Novello-nominated composer Conor Mitchell’s Propaganda: A New Musical (8 Oct – 5 Nov), playing at the Lyric Theatre; a spooky walk-through theatre experience The Ghost House (14-31 Oct) by Cahoots; an adaptation of Owen Booth’s Frankenstein’s Monster Is Drunk And The Sheep Have All Jumped The Fences (14-22 Oct) by Big Telly Theatre; a new collection of Street Art Operas, The Scorched Earth Trilogy (14 Oct) by Dumbworld and, in the final week, the latest play from Jane Coyle, After Melissa (3-5 Nov).

Other notable music events at BIAF22 include Belfast Music Society’s Northern Lights Mini Festival (28-30 Oct); the popular free BBC Radio 3 concert series (19-21 Oct), this year featuring British cellist Natalie Clein and friends; Canadian blues singer songwriter Matt Andersen (9 Oct sold out), and a host of Irish acts such as MELTS (13 Oct), IMLÉ (14 Oct), Lisa O’Neill (2 Nov), and Wallis Bird (6 Nov).

The BIAF22 Talks & Ideas strand brings together international and local names to explore thought-provoking topics including state violence, freedom of speech and movement, culture, society, impermanence and the creative possibilities opened up by our digital world. Among the international line-up are Caribbean writers Celeste Mohammed and Jacob Ross, francophone writers GauZ’ and David Foenkinos, joined by a host of UK, Irish and Northern Irish writers including Jonathan Coe, Tish Delaney, Donal Ryan and Charlotte Mendelson. Annual favourites include two new editions of Poetry Jukebox, and the John Hewitt Society’s Birthday Poetry Reading. Look out for special events Conversations on Impermanence, and Larkin in Belfast, marking the poet’s centenary.

If it has been a while since you visited Belfast, get reacquainted with the city courtesy of the popular Cultural Walking Tours led by highly knowledgeable Blue Badge guides. And make sure to visit a few of the amazing visual art exhibitions taking place across the city including punk artist Jamie Reid at Ulster University’s new art gallery.

Stay, relax and soak up the atmosphere with luxury hotel group Hastings Hotels, who are BIAF’s official accommodation partner. Check out the special BIAF rate (subject to availability), from £65 pps B&B at The Grand Central and from £50 pps B&B at The Europa Hotel. Use promo code BIAF. Also check out Ramada by Wyndham in the heart of Belfast’s Cathedral Quarter, who are offering 15% off their Best Available rate. Quote BIAF Corporate Club when booking directly with the hotel.

So take a trip to Belfast Festival this Autumn! Book online 24/7 at www.BelfastInternationalArtsFestival.com or call Box Office at Visit Belfast Welcome Centre on 028 9024 6609.

BIAF’s principal funder is the Arts Council of Northern Ireland and is also supported by Belfast City Council, British Council, the Government of Ireland’s Department of Foreign Affairs, Tourism Northern Ireland and a range of project funders and sponsors.

County Antrim Cottages Awarded Four-Stars by Tourism NI

Pictured at Limepark, Armoy cottages in County Antrim (L-r) are Hannah Reid, Estate Manager, Suzi McIlhatton, Accommodation Certification Manager at Tourism NI and Angela Biesty, owners of Limepark, Armoy cottages.

Limepark Cottages in Armoy, County Antrim, have been awarded four stars by Tourism NI. 

Situated near Ballymoney the cottages are ideal for exploring the picturesque views of the north coast and beautiful Glens of Antrim. Each of the self-catering cottages has been refurbished in an individual style while retaining their original historic features.

The cottages are based near some of Northern Ireland’s top tourist attractions such as the Giant’s Causeway, Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge, Dark Hedges and the Bushmills Distillery which make it the ideal place to stay for families or for weekend trips away. 

Suzi McIlhatton, Tourism NI’s Accommodation Certification Manager, commented: 

“Now under new ownership, Angela and her family have taken the time and care to beautifully restore The Manor House at Limepark which is a wonderful addition to the six self-catering cottages already on the site. They thoroughly deserve the 4-star grading and I wish them every success for what sounds to be a very busy year ahead.”

Angela Biesty, one of the owners of Limepark cottages added:We are delighted to have received the four-star grading from Tourism NI. It is wonderful to have Limepark featured by the organisation promoting all that is great about Northern Ireland.

“Limepark is a beautiful estate created from what was once a busy farm built in the 1720’s. The outbuildings have been transformed into six unique cottages each with their own charm and warmth. The buildings themselves have been renovated to retain their original features and yet have all the facilities needed for the modern traveller. The grounds are a mixture of manicured lawns and wildflower gardens with a communal fire pit for all guests to enjoy. We are also excited to announce that from 1st October, guests will be able to book the newly decorated Manor House, where they can relax in one of the four poster beds while planning their adventures for the day”.

Angela added: “We are hoping our four-star grading will give guests the confidence and assurance that they will have a lovely stay with us.”

Jacqueline’s Pick of What’s on this Week Across NI


In the heart of Co. Antrim nestled between the major towns of Ballymena and Magherafelt lies the village of Portglenone. The village rests along the banks of the River Bann, which has been immortalised by countless artists and writers down through the years.

It is here in this idyllic setting that the 21st ‘Gig’n the Bann’ Cross Community Music and Dance Festival will take place from the 7th – 9th October 2022. This festival has become one of the major events on the Summer Festival Calendar having built a reputation for offering a most impressive line-up of top performers spanning Traditional, Scottish and Folk Music circles.
Find out more HERE


Award-winning Banbridge Musical Society make their debut at The Market Place Theatre and Arts Centre 5th to 8th October, with ‘All Shook Up’, a musical comedy by Joe DiPietro, comprising an entire score created from the works of Elvis Presley.
Find out more HERE


On the 8th of October 2022 you are invited to join Pretty n Pink and celebrate 16 wonderful years of this fabulous charity.  Join them for a 4-course meal at Titanic Belfast with Ibe Sesay. Entertainment will be provided by the fabulous Motown Sensations, so dust off your dancing shoes, get your glad rags on for a night to remember.

Find out more HERE


The Bog Run is back and it’s bigger and boggier than ever! Are you ready to get stuck in this October in Castlewellan Forest Park in support of children and young people impacted by cancer?

Find out more HERE


Try your hand at Adventure Caving at the Marble Arch Caves, Florencecourt. Please note, this is an adult only event.  Your group of ten guided by your cave leader will explore cave passages, negotiate boulder chambers and clamber through the well-known flyover to emerge into the public tour of the Marble Arch Caves before navigating your way out, muddy and ecstatic!

Find out more HERE


Titanic Wrestling returns to the city of Derry this weekend! Wrestling Champion ‘The View’ Steven Carvel will be defending his Championship.

Find out more HERE


The Little Forget Me Nots Trust is hosting a unique event which helps kick start the beginning of Baby Loss Awareness week.  Bikers are invited to a very special Little Remembrance Ride from Peatlands Park on Sunday 9th October beginning at 10am.

Find out more HERE