A record number of parks in Northern Ireland have received a Green Flag Award – 43 to be exact.

The award encourages high environmental performance and the number of the flags award in Northern Ireland has upped 23% since last year.

Here are 13 highly recommended parks less than half an hour of travel time from Belfast’s City Centre that were awarded a Green Flag…

1. Barnett Demesne

20 minutes from the city centre

Notable for it’s magnificent cycle trails suitable for all levels of cycling endurance.

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2. Knocknagoney Park

10 minutes from the city centre

This park received a £649,000 upgrade not long ago to update its playgrounds and has shockingly green grass.

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3. Lagan Meadows

15 minutes from the city centre

You’ll be amazed to see cows grazing only a few miles from the city centre.

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4. Musgrave Park

15 minutes from the city centre

A Highway To Health route makes this park popular with walkers (the people, not the crisps) and joggers (the runners, not the trousers).

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5. Ormeau Park

10 minutes from the city centre

A nearby park with plenty of character.

6. Waterworks Park

10 minutes from the city centre

Belfast’s former water supply now a lovely place for a stroll.

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7. Belfast Botanic Gardens

15 minutes from the city centre

Home to the Palm House and Tropical Ravine with exotic tree species and impressive plant collections.

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8. Belmont Park

10 minutes from the city centre

From wildflower meadows to the art in the park programme, Belmont has a lot going for it.

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9. Cavehill Country Park

15 minutes from the city centre

See archaeological sites, panoramic views and plenty of wildlife.

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10. Sir Thomas and Lady Dixon Park

20 minutes from the city centre

Formal rose gardens, a walled garden and a Japanese garden make this park different to any other in Belfast.

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11. Stormont Estate

10 minutes from the city centre

Surrounding the parliamentary buildings is some underrated grassland, perfect for a peaceful stroll.

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12. Wallace Park

25 minutes from the city centre

Offering a weekly 5km park run, Wallace is especially popular with runners.

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13. Castle Gardens

15 minutes from the city centre

Popular attraction Belfast Castle also has stunning gardens worth an explore.

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