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Walking in the Mournes, County Down

Walking in the Mournes and Ring of Gullion

The Mournes and Ring of Gullion areas are a walker's paradise, with stunning walks to suit all abilities. These nearby Areas of Oustanding Beauty can both be explored in a short break.

Whether you're after a stenuous acscent of one of the famous summits such as Slieve Donard, Slieve Bearnagh or Slieve Binnian, a gentle stroll along the River Shinma in Tollymore Forest Park, or a ramble around the fascinating volcanic landscape of the Ring of Gullion with its rich pre-historic and Christian heritage, there's sure to be a walk for you.

See below for some ideas.

Download The Mourne Mountains: A Walker's Guide
Download the Ring of Gullion Way Guide

Places To Visit

Ring of Gullion Way,

A circular walk through and ancient volcanic landscape.

Ballymoyer Woodland,

Lowland woodland paths

Slieve Gullion,

A mountain walk linked with forest tracks and minor roads

Slieve Binnian,

Fantastic circular route in the High Mournes

Lough Shannagh,

Lough Shannagh walk leads up hill on the 'Banns Road', an off road farm track. The route circles Lough Shannagh (in an anti-clockwise direction) with a high point of 587m at Carn Mountain. It also follows and crosses the Mourne Wall on places.

Mourne Way,

Through the heart of the Mourne Mountains

Castlewellan Forest Park, Slievenaslaat Trail,

As the black trail enters the mainly coniferous plantation, the remnants of the Moorish Tower can be viewed. There are openings in the forest with impressive vistas of the farmland on and around Slievenaboley, Legananny Mountains and Slieve Croob.

Tollymore Forest Park - Arboretum Path,

Follow the blue waymarker arrows along this trail, passing along the lower edge of the arboretum. The trail gently descends through a stand of semi-mature broad leaved trees before entering the forest plots area.

Tollymore Forest Park - River Trail,

Having descended the Azalea Walk to the Shimna River, the trail turns upstream along the attractive tree lined river bank past the Hermitage to cross the river at Parnell's Bridge. The 10 metre cascade fall is most spectacular.

Tollymore Forest Park - Mountain & Drinns Trail,

A pleasant walk through both conifer and broadleaved woodland passing the Shimna River, duckponds and several points of historical interest. The Drinns Trail is an optional loop for those wishing to have a greater challenge.

Rostrevor - Cloughmore Stone,

Walks though a woodland with steep climbs and hills in places

Rambles for people with limited mobility - Castlewellan Forest Park,

The park covers over 1000 acres of beautiful countryside of mature forests and woodland. This circular walk from the car park is on a flat path 7 feet plus wide.

Fairy Glen - linear walk,

The Fairy Glen in Rostrevor provides a pleasant venue for a short stroll. From the centre of Rostrevor village, go down Bridge Street. The Fairy Glen is on the left immediately after the bridge beside the entrance to Kilbroney Park.

Newcastle Way,

A circular route taking in the diverse scenery of Co Down

Granite Trail,

The Granite Trail to Thomas’s Mountain is just over 1,100 metres

Slieve Donard (via Glen River),

Slieve Donard at 850m (2,789 ft) is the highest of the Mourne Mtns. The views from the summit are extensive and on a clear day the Isle of Man, Wicklow, Donegal, Wales and Scotland may be seen, as well as the long stretch of Newcastle Beach.

Bearnagh and Meelmore,

A 9km/5.5 mile circuit taking in 2 summits in the Mournes

Hawthorn Hill,

Off-road broadleaf woodland walk

Dundrum Castle Woods Trail,

Dundrum Castle Woods

Dundrum Coastal Path,

Dundrum Coastal Path

Bloody Bridge,

This walk leads from the Bloody Bridge car park, south along the rocky shoreline and back with some stunning coastal views.

Hare's Gap,

Quarry track with final uphill section over rocky terrain.

Rocky Mountain,

A gentle walk which includes some steep sections

Slieve Donard from Bloody Bridge,

This walk begins in the Bloody Bridge car park (on the coast), follows the Bloody Bridge River and then follows the Mourne Wall to the summit of Slieve Donard (850m).

Slieve Donard, Commedagh and Bearnagh,

Challenging walk in the Mournes, including the two highest peaks

Meelmore and Meelbeg,

A moderate circular walk in the High Mournes, summiting two of the seven highest peaks in the region, Slieve Meelmore and Slieve Meelbeg.

Trassey to Bloody Bridge,

A moderate linear walk giving a true taste of the Mournes

Hen, Cock and Pigeon Rock,

A circular route in the western Mournes

Central Mournes,

A circular route in the central Mournes taking in sites such as Annalong Wood, Slievelamagan, Ben Crom Reservoir, Cove Mountain and Annalong Valley, with views over the Irish Sea and to the Isle of Man.

Reservoir Views,

A strenuous day walk passing through the heart of the Mournes

Mourne Wall Challenge,

Challenging circular walk following the length of Mourne Wall

Castlewellan Forest Park, Cypress Pond Trail,

This walk takes in views of the Mourne Mountains from the former "Crow Road". It then follows the lakeside before reaching the secluded Cypress Pond on the return leg of the trail.

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