Kieron GribbonNathan KingerleeConor McKinney
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Top 5 Autumn Walking Breaks in the Mournes

Posted on September 10, 2015 @ 3:32 PM in Walking

Colourful scenery, misty mornings and golden sunsets – autumn is definitely the season to be pulling on the walking boots.  To make the most of this fabulous time of year we have teamed up with walker friendly accommodation to provide some great walking break offers in the best walking locations throughout Northern Ireland.  Valid from Sept - Nov (T&Cs apply visit WalkNI for more details) all you have to do is contact the accommodation providers directly and quote ‘WalkNI’ to book.

With so many to choose from we’ve put together a list of some of our favourite walks next to walker friendly accommodation with great offers so you can rest your head (and feet!) for the night on a hassle free walking break in the Mournes this autumn:

The Walk: Slieve Binnian 
This fantastic 7 mile circular walking route follows the Mourne Wall to the summit of Slieve Binnian (747m), traverses between the impressive South and North Tors with spectacular views of both Silent Valley and Ben Crom Reservoirs before descending along a track past the Blue Lough to Annalong Forest.

Place to Stay: Kribben Cottages - 3 nights for the price of 2
A cluster of 5 luxury, 4 star self-catering cottages nestled against the magnificent back drop of the Mourne Mountains, in a rural picturesque area close to the bustling seaside town of Newcastle and walking distance to Binnian.

Slieve DOnard

The Walk: Slieve Donard (via Bloody Bridge) 
An alternative to the popular Donard Forest route, the impressive Bloody Bridge River will guide you past the old quarry - a great vantage point for the line of a disused railway leading to Carr’s Face on the slopes of Chimney Rock Mountain before following the famous Mourne Wall to Northern Ireland’s highest summit.

Place to Stay:
Burrendale Hotel Coutry Club & Spa - 50% Off 
Nestled between the Mourne Mountains and the glimmering Irish Sea this 4 * Country Club & Hotel prides itself on their warm, friendly atmosphere and the high quality of food.

Slieve Donard   - 15% Off
This deluxe 4* hotel with spa is the perfect place to unwind after conquering some of the highest peaks.  A golden strand of beach borders one side with the majestic Mourne Mountains providing a welcoming vista from the hotel. 

Accommodation Offers Mournes

The Walk: Beanagh & Meelmore 
A strenuous walk this route takes in the peaks of Slieve Bearnagh (one of the most distinctive mountains in the Mournes, renowned for the granite tors on its summit (739m)) and Slieve Meelmore (704m), finishing by walking down Happy Valley and along a section of the Ulster Way. This circuit uses the Mourne Wall as a handrail on the higher parts of the mountain and offers superb views on a clear day stretching as far as the Sperrins, Lough Neagh and Strangford Lough.

Place to Stay: Gorse Hill Farm - 15% Off
Gorse Hill Farm is a beautiful 4 star self-catering cottage set in the heart of the Mourne mountains with unsurpassed views of Shimna valley, Meelmore and Hare’s Gap (the most dramatic mountain pass in the Mournes).  This coupled with secure storage, free parking washing machine and free Wi-Fi makes it a walkers haven. 

Mourne Mountains Accommodation

The Walk: Lough Shannagh 
This mountain ramble follows the Banns Road in the Mournes and circles Lough Shannagh (the largest natural body of water in the Mournes), reaching a high point of 587m at Carn Mountain. Lough Shannagh (the lake of the fox) is an impressive view in itself however if you are looking to add in more height nearby Doan Mt provides stunning panoramic views form a height.

Place to Stay:  The Mourne Lodge  - 2 nights for £80pp
Walkers are sure to be warmly welcomed at the Mourne Lodge in Attical based in tranquil surroundings between Silent Valley and Spelga Dam.  This budget guest accommodation is perfect for walkers providing delicious home cooked meals as well as self catering options. Relax with your walking group or curl up with a good book beside the wood burning stove in the spacious shared lounge.

Castlewellan Forest Park

The Walk:  Castlewellan Forest Park 
From breath-taking views to the Mourne Mountains as well as some of the oldest and rarest existing trees in the British Isles the 7.5 mile network of walk trails in Castlewellan Forest Park will not disappoint.  The Slievenaslat Trail provides a series of stunning viewpoints offering panoramic views of the Mourne Mountains whilst the Annesley Garden Walk takes in a variety of Lakes and Ponds within the forest opening up a treasure trove of plants, trees and secluded spots in this real life ‘secret garden’.  Other walks include a leisurely stroll around Castlewellan Lake as well as the Cypress Pond Walk and Moorish Tower

Place to Stay:  Mourne Haven - 15% Off
With uninterrupted views of the Mourne Mountains and Tollymore Forest just 1.5 miles from Castlewellan this 3 bedroom self catering accommodation provides a brilliant escape to the Mournes for a true taste of country living whilst still located within easy access to both Castlewellan and Newcastle. 

Visit WalkNI.com for even more walker friendly accommodation offers in the Mournes and throughout Northern Ireland. 

Sarah Nelson
Sarah Nelson  Marketing Officer

Sarah joined the marketing team of Outdoor Recreation NI in 2011. A firm believer in giving anything a go at least once (unless it involves jumping out of a plane at 6,000ft!) she is always looking for new adventures in the outdoors and can often be found wandering the Mournes or Glens of Antrim attempting not to get lost!

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