Be Outdoor Smart – Leave No Trace – Love The Place23rd October 2020
New guidelines introduced to reduce the spread of Covid-19 continue to allow people within Northern Ireland to travel to outdoor spaces for recreational purposes meaning many outdoor recreation sites and associated facilities across Northern Ireland remain open.
Spending time outdoors can significantly improve physical and mental wellbeing and with many outdoor sites now seeing an increase in visitors, Outdoor Recreation NI are encouraging people to ‘Be Outdoor Smart – Leave No Trace – Love The Place’
Following these simple guidelines below will ensure your outdoor experience is as enjoyable and memorable as possible.
Be Outdoor Smart
- Plan your day around your needs and what will be available (i.e. toilets, on-site visitor facilities, playgrounds, baby changing facilities etc.) – check reliable websites and pre book if necessary
- Respect our emergency services – now is not the time to end up in hospital
- Scale back your ambitions – choose activities that are within your skills and capabilities
- Park with care – careless parking can create a road hazard or block access for Emergency Services, local farmers and residents
- Avoid peak times and popular honeypot sites to help maintain social distancing
- Bring and use hand sanitiser, especially after touching surfaces and wash your hands as soon as you are back indoors
- Respect the wishes of landowners, local communities and other users of the site
- Try to keep at least 2 metres apart from anyone outside your household or bubble where possible
- Do not leave your house if you have any COVID-19 symptoms or if you are self-isolating
Leave No Trace – Love The Place
Practicing a Leave No trace ethic is very simple – make it hard for others to see or hear you and LEAVE NO TRACE of your visit by:
- Taking your litter home with you
- Keeping your dog under control
- Enjoying nature but do not disturb it
- Only starting fires in designated BBQ areas, ensuring they will not spread and are cold before you clear them up
For a range of useful hints and tips on how you can plan and prepare your outdoor visit to help protect the environment your visiting check out MyNI’s Get into Nature campaign.
Further information and the current status of key outdoor recreation sites is provided on NI DIRECT.