Gosford Forest Park Blue Path

Difficulty
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Easy
Duration
This reflects the estimated time the majority of users will take on this trail. If you are slower, add time to the top-end figure. If you are fast, then you may complete this route faster than this time range.
0.5-1h
Distance
This reflects the return distance of this route as measured by the GPS file.
2.3 km
Elevation
This reflects the total elevation gained throughout this route as measured by the GPS file. This includes all ascents and descents, and is higher than what is quoted in most route guides, which simply measure the distance between the starting-point and high-point of the route.
86 m
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Directions to Trailhead

The Gosford Forest Park Blue Path is a laid back adventure in County Armagh that will lead you through a beautifully scenic stretch of woodland terrain to view a stunning example of 19th Century architecture. While out walking the trail, you will meander through the cover of the forest and take in the views of the mature trees that surround you, before arriving at Gosford Castle. This is a fairly quick journey along well-maintained paths that is suitable for all ages and skill levels.

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Route Description for Gosford Forest Park Blue Path

While the Gosford Forest Park Blue Path traverses a relatively peaceful swathe of woodlands that allow you to explore and reconnect with nature, the area is also a popular place for locals and visitors alike to do the same. If you want to avoid the busy times within the park, you should try to arrive a bit early. Pathways here are well-maintained, but you should still wear some comfortable walking footwear in order to better traverse the trail.

Even with the popularity of the park as a recreation space, this is a wonderful walking route that will provide some beautiful views and a real sense of relaxation. In addition to the mature trees and variety of plant life, you will also get some amazing views of Gosford Castle, a 19th Century country house that was built in the Norman Revival style and has since been turned into private residences. With such beautiful views, short overall distance, and easy-going terrain, there is no reason not to walk this awesome trail.

Setting out from the car park, you will make your way to the northwest through the dense cover of the forest and take in the lovely views of the surrounding trees and plant life. After reaching the Secret Gardens, turn right and make your way through their beautiful expanse on the way towards Gosford Castle.

From here, you will turn to the southeast and skirt around the edge of the castle, taking in the views of it's beautiful architecture before entering back into the tranquil forest. After picking the trail back up, follow it to the southeast to pass by the caravan park and meet up with a lane. Turn right here and follow the lane unti; you meet back up with the car park where you began your adventure along the Gosford Forest Park Blue Path Trail.

Trail Highlights

Gosford Castle

Commissioned by The 2nd Earl of Gosford in 1819 but only completed in 1859; Gosford Castle is a former country house in County Armagh, Northern Ireland that was home to the Acheson family and was built in the Norman Revival style of architecture.

The castle was used to house soldiers during the Second World War, and had even featured a POW camp on site. Shortly after the conflict, the building and grounds were sold to the Ministry of Agriculture. The grounds have since been established as the Gosford Forest Park and the castle has served several purposes, including a brief stint as a hotel before being converted into private residences.

Frequently Asked Questions

Who owns Gosford Forest Park?

Currently, the Forest Service of Northern Ireland is in control of Gosford Forest Park.

Are dogs permitted in Gosford Forest Park?

Dog walking is allowed within Gosford Forest Park, although they should always be kept on a lead.

Insider Hints for Gosford Forest Park Blue Path

  • Arrive early to secure parking, as this is a popular walking route.
  • Make sure to respect other walkers and always keep your dog on a lead.
  • Be sure to wear comfortable walking footwear.

Getting to the Gosford Forest Park Blue Path Trailhead

To get to the trailhead for the Gosford Forest Park Blue Path from Markethill, head north on Main Street/B78 for 0.6 km and turn left onto Markethill Road /A28. After 149 m, turn right and continue on for 0.5 km, where you will find the entrance to the car park on the left.

Route Information

  • Backcountry Campground

    No

  • When to do

    Year-Round

  • Pets allowed

    Yes - On Leash

  • Family friendly

    Yes

  • Route Signage

    Average

  • Crowd Levels

    Moderate

  • Route Type

    Circuit

Gosford Forest Park Blue Path Elevation Graph

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