OutdoorNI.com is your definitive guide to Hang Gliding in Northern Ireland and Paragliding in Northern Ireland.
Imagine floating along high above the cliffs at Magilligan or over one of Northern Ireland’s many hills, with nothing but the sound of a gentle breeze or a waterfall far below.
Hang Gliding Northern Ireland
Since its inception in the 1970s, hang gliding in Northern Ireland has developed into a practical and relatively safe sport, using simple yet sophisticated machines built of aluminium, carbon-fibre and high-tech sail fabrics. Hang glider pilots, suspended from their gliders by a special harness, launch from hills facing into wind, from winches on flat ground or by being towed aloft from an airfield behind a microlight aircraft. The objective is always to stay airborne in lifting currents of air and - for many - to undertake long cross country flights. The Irish record for distance currently stands at over 140km.
Paragliding Northern Ireland
Developed from parachuting canopies in the late 1980s, modern paragliders can be soared effortlessly on windward slopes and across country in good conditions. It is the same freedom that hang glider pilots have, but a paraglider is more portable and a little easier to learn to fly. They are more hampered by strong winds than hang gliders but are easier to land in small fields. Paragliding in Northern Ireland is a thriving sport with 60+ local pilots countrywide.The NI distance record for an unpowered paraglider flight is just over 100kms.