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Explore the Sperrins as walking festival returns

Locals and visitors are invited to discover the beauty, tranquillity and hospitality of the Glenelly and Killeter Regions when the Sperrins and Killeter Walking Festival returns on September 14 and 15.

 The festival, a must for experienced and novice walkers alike, has gone from strength to strength each year with walking trails for walkers of all ages and abilities to encourage more people to get out and about and explore the great outdoors.

 The festival is hugely important in enhancing the tourism offering in the area and encouraging locals and tourists to enjoy the amazing views and scenic countryside by taking part in the wide range of walking routes on offer.

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 The festival is organised by Derry City and Strabane District Council in partnership with local adventure company Far and Wild who will this year host six specialised walks that will be led and supervised by fully-trained walking guides.

 Key to the festivals success is the variety of the walks with all levels of fitness and interests catered for.

 Mayor of Derry City and Strabane District Council Cllr Michaela Boyle says events showcasing the natural beauty of the Sperrins and its environs was hugely important in developing and promoting the local tourism product.

 “I am a big fan of the Sperrins and Killeter Walking Festival and the way in which it offers a wide range of specialised walks for all levels of fitness so whether you are interested in a family stroll or a challenging hike, there is something to suit you.

“The festival has a strong cross border element and encompasses all the positive attributes of our local area, such as wildlife, history and culture, and is a huge asset to our local tourism product. The festival plays a key role in developing and promoting the area as a walking destination and is getting more and more popular every year,” she said.

 Among the specialised walks that are expected to attract huge public interest are the Water, Power Behind Thrones Walk at Glenelly and the Famous Local Characters Walk from the Owenkillew Valley to Drumnaspar. The Images of the Bog walk will include Ballix Hil, Clogherney, The Moat, Bradkeel and Glenga while the Pettigo Wildlife walk will take place from Killeter Community Hall.

 Other walks included in the festival include the Tullnashane River Trail that will take the route of the Derg River to Tullnashane loop and the challenging trek of the Derg Dynasties that traces the history of the Derg valley and the infamous Lough as a major watercourse and pilgrim mecca since Potlemy’s 2nd century world map.

 Each walk is priced at £5 and includes hospitality before and after the walk in Watts Bar, Plumbridge and Killeter Community Hall.

• For more information on each  of the walks and details on how to book can be obtained online at www.sperrinskilleterwalking.com.

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