Castlewellan Forest Park

Castlewellan Forest Park

One of Northern Ireland's most famous lakes, a stunning Victorian Castle, incredible panoramic views, scenic walking trails, 27km of Mountain Bike Trails, Nature Play perfect for the kids, an onsite multi-activity centre, hedge maze and equestrian centre, Castlewellan Forest Park boasts all of this and more making it a must-visit for all ages.

With flowing singletrack and panoramic views of the Mourne Mountains, the Castlewellan Mountain Bike Trails offer a wide variety of exciting trails to suit everyone from beginners and families right through to experienced riders. The green and blue trails are ideal for learning ‘biking basics’ and developing techniques whereas the longer red trail with black options will suit more experienced mountain bikers looking for that all important adrenaline rush. The Pump Track (located at the trailhead) is perfect for honing your bike handling skills!

If you prefer to keep your feet firmly on the ground the forest park has a 7.5 mile (12 kilometers) walk trail network featuring breath-taking views to the Mourne Mountains as well as some of the oldest and rarest existing trees in the British Isles.  All the trails start from the Lakeside Car Park and take in many of the key points of interest including the Annesley Garden and Arboretum (a mixture of informal and formal design with terraces, fountains, ornamental gates and flower borders and home to some of the oldest existing specimens in the British Isles) and Moorish Tower as well as maximising the iconic views of the Mourne Mountains from the summit of Slievenaslat.

Perfect for the kids, a brand new play structure has recently been installed in the forest park.  ‘Animal Wood’ is designed for four to eleven year olds and is located beside the Peace Maze.   Featuring a short path, Animal Wood provides lots of opportunities for playing on wild woodland animals including a badger and its den, a red squirrel and a giant spider.  In addition it boasts a wooden play structure with a tower in the image of The Moorish Tower where children can enjoy the climbing wall, fireman’s pole and rope-bridge over to a hollow tree stump slide and Red Kite nest that are sure to keep the kids entertained! Check out our blog 'Kids Go Wild for Nature Play' for one families first hand account of the play area.

Beside ‘Animal Wood’ you’ll find the Peace Maze, one of the world's largest permanent hedge mazes representing the path to a peaceful future for Northern Ireland. Planted in 2000 with community involvement, visitors can attempt to solve their way to the peace bell in the centre of the maze.

Some of the walk trails (see below) within the park are suitable for people with limited mobility on scooter. Manual wheelchairs - the total distance including the Peace Maze and Gardens is around 6 miles and would recommend a challenge to any pushers at any one visit.

Facilities

Café
Accessible parking
Accessible toilets
Parking
Camping
The forest offers extensive facilities for the caravan or camping enthusiast. There are modern toilets and showers, together with a fresh water supply, chemical toilet disposal point and electricity hook up for caravans. Open from St Patrick's Weekend until 31st October.

Opening Hours

Open daily 10am until sunset.

Charges

Parking: 

Car £5

Minibus £13

Coach £33.50

Motorcycle £2.50

(Payable on entrance to car park and covers admission to forest)

Walk Trails

Circular, 2.4 miles

Castlewellan Forest Park - Lakeside Walk. An easy walk around the lake path, also a family cycling trai.

Circular, 3.1 miles

Castlewellan Forest Park - Cypress Pond Walk. Forest walk with spectacular views of the Mourne Mountains.

Circular, 2.7 miles

Castlewellan Forest Park - Slievenaslat Walk. Amazing views of Mourne Mountains and Slieve Croob AONB..

Circular, 2.2 miles

Castlewellan Forest Park - Annesley Garden Walk. Short walk taking in Annesley Garden and the National Arborteum.

Circular, 3.2 miles

Castlewellan Forest Park - Moorish Tower Walk. Short walk through Castlewellan Forest Park. TEMPORARILY CLOSED..

Mountain Bike Trails

Castlewellan. 27km of green, blue, red & black trails and pump track.

Outdoor Activity Centres

+44 (0) 28 437 70714
iwant@onegreatadventure.com

Life Adventure Centre. A multi-activity centre offering a range of activities both on and off site.

028 4377 8651
info@mountpleasantcentre.com

Mount Pleasant Equestrian Centre. Horse Riding & Pony Trekking Centre.

Other Activities

Archery
Available onsite from Life Adventure Centre www.outdoorni.com/providers/657/life-adventure-centre/

Clay Pigeon Shooting
Available from Life Adventure Centre www.outdoorni.com/providers/657/life-adventure-centre/

Climbing
Available from Life Adventure Centre - Mobile Climbing Tower www.outdoorni.com/providers/657/life-adventure-centre/

Horse Riding
Forest Service Permit Required. Click here for info on obtaining a permit http://bit.ly/1F4gDeE

Mountain Biking
Bike hire, training and guiding available from Life Adventure Centre www.outdoorni.com/providers/657/life-adventure-centre/

Orienteering
Visit www.niorienteering.org.uk/lvo/Maps/permanent-courses.php for details on the permanent orienteering course

Comments

seamus mc parland 4 June, 2013 @ 21:39

Hi was just wondering are you allowed to fish in the lake if we are goin to stay a few days

OutdoorNI 7 June, 2013 @ 16:30

Seamus,

Thank you for your comment on the Castlewellan Forest Park page of OutdoorNI.com /Local Outdoors.

Fishing is permitted in Castlewellan Lake between 1st March - 31st October. The lake has both brown and rainbow trout.

Fly fishing, spinning and worm fishing from shore. Fly fishing only from boats.

You will require the necessary permit

For more info see http://www.nidirect.gov.uk/index/information-and-services/leisure-home-and-community/leisure-and-recreation/outdoor-recreation/angling/where-can-i-fish-in-northern-ireland/fisheries-in-county-down/angling-at-castlewellan-lake.htm

cliodhna 8 July, 2013 @ 14:21

Hi :) sorry this might be a bit of a silly question but can you swim in the lake in castlewellan forest park? :) just at the pier part?

Fidelma 10 July, 2013 @ 01:31

Hi does the Park have a play area for children we would like to camp for a few days

OutdoorNI 10 July, 2013 @ 18:05

Cliodhna,

Thank you for your comment on the Castlewellan Forest Park page of OutdoorNI.com /Local Outdoors.

Unfortunately swimming is not permitted in Castlewellan Lake.

OutdoorNI 10 July, 2013 @ 18:10

Fidelma,

Thank you for your comment on the Castlewellan Forest Park page of OutdoorNI.com /Local Outdoors.

Unfortunately there isn't a play park however there are plenty of activities to keep the children amused including:

Peace Maze

Life Adventure - Multi-Activity Centre - listed above

Mount Pleasant Equestrian Centre

Newly opened mountain bike trails suitable for all levels

Enjoy your stay.

Mandy 17 July, 2013 @ 17:45

Hi....what time do the gates open for walking?

Thanks

Mandy

OutdoorNI 18 July, 2013 @ 12:28

Mandy,

Thank you for your comment on the Castlewellan Forest Park page of OutdoorNI.com /Local Outdoors.

The car park opens at 10 a.m. to sunset each day. Although the park can essentially be accessed by foot at any time.

OutdoorNI

Claire McQuillan 23 July, 2013 @ 13:54

Hi...... Can you tell me if you have to book in advance for orienteering or any of the activities @ the multi- activity centre. There is a group of families heading down this weekend and we are looking ideas to do with the kids

ta

OutdoorNI 24 July, 2013 @ 09:58

Hi Claire,

Thank you for your enquiry. Life adventure centre provide the activities at Castlewellan. You can contact them on +44 (0)2843770714 or by emailing iwant@onegreatadventure.com to check availability of activities this weekend and to book your place.

Hope you have a great weekend!

OutdoorNI

Diane 1 August, 2013 @ 15:10

Are dogs allowed off lead in the park (away from the camping/caravan area?

Thanks

OutdoorNI 2 August, 2013 @ 10:07

Diane,

We are not aware of any hard or fast rule regarding dogs in Castlewellan Forest Park. Dogs should obviously be kept under control to avoid any nuisance to other park visitors.

Thanks

OutdoorNI

Andrew 9 August, 2013 @ 13:48

Hello, just wondering how much is it to hire out mountain bikes and how difficult are the tracks.

Thanks

OutdoorNI 9 August, 2013 @ 16:42

Andrew,

Our sister website MountainBikeNI.com will have all the information you need for the Castlewellan Mountain Bike Trails http://www.mountainbikeni.com/castlewellan/

A range of bike hire providers can be found at http://www.mountainbikeni.com/castlewellan/hire/

The difficulty of the trails are indicated by their colour Castlewellan has a 4km Green, 4.5km Blue and 19km Red - trail grades are explained at http://www.mountainbikeni.com/useful-info/trail-grade-specifications/

Thanks

OutdoorNI

Joseph O'Loan 26 August, 2013 @ 14:00

A very beautiful forest park which I always enjoy.

However, the signage on the way-marked trails, especially the Slievenaslaat Trail, is utterly woeful. The remedial tree felling makes it more difficult, I know, but the signage on this trail sometimes non-exist and where it is present it is not always accurate.

Thanks.

OutdoorNI 2 September, 2013 @ 16:38

Joseph,

Thanks for your constructive comments regarding the signage on the waymarked walking trails in Castlewellan Forest Park. We will pass these on to Forest Service Northern Ireland who own and manage the park.

We understand that felling operations to address tree disease will cease before the end of September.

OutdoorNI

ciaran smyth 14 January, 2014 @ 08:36

how much is it to camp out in a tent for 2 nights

OutdoorNI 14 January, 2014 @ 15:09

Hi Ciaran,

Thanks for your enquiry. NI Direct manage the camping in Castlewellan Forest Park. A list of the current rates for camping can be found here http://bit.ly/L7c9jU . To book contact The Forest Ranger, Castlewellan Forest Park, Castlewellan, BT31 9BU Telephone: +44 28 4377 8664

kate 19 January, 2014 @ 22:13

Is there a map of the trails open to horses?

OutdoorNI 20 January, 2014 @ 10:37

Hi Kate,

Thanks for your enquiry via Local Outdoors. For more information on horse riding in Castlewellan or to purchase a permit, contact the forest park on Tel: 028 4377 8664. They should also be able to advise whether there is a map for the horse riding trails.

Enjoy your day on the trails.

Local Outdoors

hayley 9 February, 2014 @ 17:58

I was just wondering do you pay throughout the whole year to park or is it during certain seasons?

OutdoorNI 10 February, 2014 @ 11:13

Hi Hayley,

Thanks for your enquiry. The daily charge for cars is £4.50 and is applicable throughout the year. Alternatively you can purchase an annual car permit for £48.00. There is no charge for pedestrians to access the forest. More details can be found on the NI Direct website here http://bit.ly/1lGppvS

OutdoorNI

ricky 7 March, 2014 @ 18:45

Hi

how do i go about getting a permit to allow me to take a group out on the lake?

what info do you require for the permit?

Thanks.

OutdoorNI 12 March, 2014 @ 13:30

Hi Ricky,

Many thanks for your enquiry. You need to contact the Forest Service Recreation Manager at Castlewellan Forest Park regarding any permits for activities. Please see details below:

Castlewellan Forest Park

The Grange

Tel: 028 4377 2240

NI Direct: www.nidirect.gov.uk/castlewellan-forest-park-2

Josh 21 April, 2014 @ 21:18

I went last year going on wednesday cant wait

connor peckett 14 June, 2014 @ 18:14

Hi i'm just wondering if it's possible to bring my own kayak, it's a strong kayak, great material, released this year with 4 years garantee so it's not exactly something from ikea, so is it possible i may bring this, all saftey equipment is owned aswell, thank you

OutdoorNI 16 June, 2014 @ 10:48

Connor,

Thank you for your enquiry to OutdoorNI.com re Castlewellan Forest Park.

It is possible to bring your own canoe / kayak to Castlewellan Forest Park. Access to Castlewellan Lake is via a slipway in adjoining the car park on your right as your pass the Forest Ranger's hut.

We would advise you follow safety guidance at http://www.canoeni.com/useful-info/safety/

Thanks,

OutdoorNI

Patrick 27 June, 2014 @ 14:49

Hi are there canoes and kayaks for hire at the Park ? If so can you send me a link with prices and info.

Thanks

Francis Drake 28 June, 2014 @ 18:29

Hi, I have been looking to take my children fishing in Castlewellan lake and found trying to buy a fishing permit and licence very difficult, in the past there were a number of places available but now it's only possible online.Even getting prices and buying is taking me hours, the same problem when there was boats on the lake...I am local I pity a tourist who just wants to show up fish or camp, a real shame.

Conor 29 June, 2014 @ 16:47

Hi, just wondering if use hire boats for fly fishing?

OutdoorNI 30 June, 2014 @ 10:26

Hi Patrick,

Thanks for your enquiry. You can hire canoes and kayaks from Life Adventure Centre who are based in the courtyard within Castlewellan Forest Park. Contact them or visit their website for more info including prices etc.

Life Adventure Centre

+44 (0) 28 437 70714

www.onegreatadventure.com

OutdoorNI

OutdoorNI 1 July, 2014 @ 15:25

Hi Francis,

Thank you for your feedback we have passed it on to the Senior Fisheries Officer at Castlewellan.

OutdoorNI

OutdoorNI 1 July, 2014 @ 15:54

Hi Conor,

Thanks for getting in touch. There is an activity centre on site at Castlewellan (Life Adventure Centre) however unfortunately they do not have boats for hire, only canoes and kayaks. I would suggest contacting the Senior Fisheries Officer at DCAL who manage the lake for more information (028) 4377 8937 peter.lynch@dcalni.gov.uk

OutdoorNI

June Shields 17 July, 2014 @ 20:52

I VISITED TODAY WITH FAMILY,A TOTAL OF 18 PEOPLE IN 4 CARS.THERE WERE 6 CHILDREN, ONE WITH SPECIAL NEEDS.WE PAID OUR ADMISSION AND WERE NOT GIVEN ANY LEAFLETS OR INSTRUCTIONS AS WERE TO GO. AFTER LOOKING AROUND FOR SUITABLE PARKING WE FOUND A SPOT IDEAL FOR THE CHILDREN.THEY WERE AWAY FROM TRAFFIC AND ALL WAS WELL UNTIL A YELLOW VAN DRIVES UP ON THE GRASS AND A MAN SPEAKS OUT OF THE WINDOW TO SAY WE WERE NOT ALLOWED TO PARK THERE.THERE WAS NOTHING MORE TO DO OTHER THAN PACK UP AND LEAVE.EVERYONE WAS SO ANNOYED AND I JUST FEEL THAT I NEED TO EXPRESS MY OPINION. THIS IS JUST NOT GOOD ENOUGH. WE WERE NOT OBSTRUCTING ANYTHING OR ANYONE.THERE WAS NO SIGNS TO SAY ;NO PARKING;. IN FACT THERE WERE OTHER CARS WHO DROVE ONTO THE GRASS AND GOT OUT TO TAKE PHOTOS OF THE MOUNTAINS.OUR 4 CARS WERE ALL PARKED ON THE GRAVEL. OUR MUCH PLANNED DAY OUT WAS RUINED.

OutdoorNI 22 July, 2014 @ 14:19

Hi June,

Thank you for your feedback on Castlewellan Forest Park. We do not manage the forest park ourselves but simply promote it as a venue for outdoor recreation. I have passed on your feedback to the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (DARD) who manage the site.

OutdoorNI

Niall 20 August, 2014 @ 22:55

Is there a pump track,how much,Nd other details about it

OutdoorNI 26 August, 2014 @ 14:09

Hi Niall,

Yes there is a pump track. There is no cost to ride the mountain bike trails or pump track at Castlewellan however there is a car parking fee for the forest park; (£4.50 per car). You can find more information, including a trail map on MountainbikeNI.com http://www.mountainbikeni.com/castlewellan/

Enjoy!

Min Witts 22 September, 2014 @ 15:14

Hi, I was wondering what the best bus would be to get from Belfast to the forest park? Are there bus stops near by? Thanks.

OutdoorNI 22 September, 2014 @ 15:25

Hi Min,

If travelling onto Castlewellan by bus, take bus No.18 from Adelaide Street from behind Belfast City Hall. For more information contact Translink on +44 (0)28 9066 6630. You may also find the Translink Journey Planner useful: http://journeyplanner.translink.co.uk/web/XSLT_TRIP_REQUEST2?language=en

OutdoorNI

andrew 28 October, 2014 @ 14:16

Hi, iv been going to the forest for a few years only to fish in the lake but i was just wondering what types of trees are in the forest?.....thanks a lot in advance!

Andrew

OutdoorNI 30 October, 2014 @ 15:05

Hi Andrew,

Many thanks for your interest in Castlewellan Forest Park. The forest park is home to a vast variety of trees including rare and prized specimens. Here is a link to the Royal Horticultural Society which contains details of the trees that can be found in the forest park https://www.rhs.org.uk/gardens/GardenDetails?id=175&cboCounty=cheshire Many are also labelled within the park.

OutdoorNI

Bronagh 15 January, 2015 @ 11:00

hi,

is the park suitable for 2 young kids 6 , 8 to cycle around on bikes- with parents. are there some bike trails suitable and if so - how long are they.? we'd like to camp and bring bikes with us for some cycling withthe kids

OutdoorNI 15 January, 2015 @ 14:04

Hi Bronagh,

Many thanks for your enquiry via local outdoors. There are a number of mountain bike trails of different grades available within Castlewellan Forest Park.

Castlewellan has a 4km Green, 4.5km Blue and 19km Red trail- trail grades are explained at http://www.mountainbikeni.com/useful-info/trail-grade-specifications/

The 4km green trail that circles the lake is on flat tarmac and would be perfect for the kids to cycle. The slightly more challenging but still relatively flat 4.5km Blue trail follows a similar route but on singletrack trail through woodland which depending on their ability they may also enjoy.

Details of all the mountain bike trails within Castlewellan Forest Park can be found here: http://www.mountainbikeni.com/castlewellan/

I hope you and the kids enjoy Castlewellan!

Margaret Campbell 19 February, 2015 @ 10:37

Hi We just love our visits to the Park..we would be there quiet alot with our little grandchildren & our Golden retreiver especially now the weather is brighter.. A friend has said we can purchase an Annual ticked concession as my husband is 60 can you advise if this is correct & also the price can I purchase in Castlewellan at the weekend or office hours Mon - Frid

Many thanks await you reply

Margaret

OutdoorNI 19 February, 2015 @ 18:02

Hi Margaret,

Many thanks for your comments via Local Outdoors re Castlewellan – we’re glad to hear you are enjoying the park. Annual car park permits can be purchased at a cost of £25 for over 60s. See here for 2015 park rates http://goo.gl/AFofOM

More information and an application form for applying for a permit can be found here http://www.nidirect.gov.uk/forest-service-annual-permit-application-2015.pdf?rev=0

You can hand in your application form and payment in the forest park. If there is no one at the entrance hut, someone should be able to assist you in the park offices which are located on the right hand side of the 2nd courtyard.

Anna 1 March, 2015 @ 15:02

Hi, Was wondering if horses are allowed around the lake, if not what trails are available to use and are there particular times you have to be out by? Thanks

OutdoorNI 2 March, 2015 @ 15:18

Hi Anna,

Thanks for your comment on Local Outdoors.

Horse riding is allowed on the designated horse riding trails within the park to permit holders. For more information on horse riding in Castlewellan or to purchase a permit, contact the forest park on Tel: 028 4377 8664. They will be able to advise what trails can be used and provide a map once a permit is purchased.

Enjoy the trails!

OutdoorNI

T.Loney . 9 March, 2015 @ 17:32

My grandson would like to try fishing and I was wondering was it possible to get a day licence to fish in the lake on a day visit ?

OutdoorNI 10 March, 2015 @ 08:53

Hi Thomas,

Thanks for your enquiry. Fishing permits for Castlewellan Lake can be purchased from the Department of Culture, Arts and Leisure (DCAL), Inland Fisheries Group.

T: 0300 200 7860 and they will be able to advise which permit you require and how to purchase it.

More info here: www.nidirect.gov.uk/angling

Michael Corrin 7 April, 2015 @ 12:41

Could bring my dog, she will be leashed at all times?

OutdoorNI 8 April, 2015 @ 10:49

Hi Michael,

Yes dogs are allowed in the forest park. Forest Service NI state that dog owners can bring dogs into forests and woodlands, provided they:

Always keep their dogs under control

Don't allow their dogs to distress other forest users or wildlife

Dog owners should be responsible and clear up after their dogs to avoid problems for other walkers.

Enjoy.

Jordan 16 April, 2015 @ 15:49

Are Pets allowed

OutdoorNI 16 April, 2015 @ 15:56

Hi Jordan,

Dogs are allowed in the forest park. Forest Service NI state that dog owners can bring dogs into forests and woodlands, provided they:

Always keep their dogs under control

Don't allow their dogs to distress other forest users or wildlife

Dog owners should be responsible and clear up after their dogs to avoid problems for other walkers.

Horse riding is allowed on the designated horse riding trails within the park to permit holders. For more information on horse riding in Castlewellan or to purchase a permit, contact the forest park on Tel: 028 4377 8664. They will be able to advise what trails can be used and provide a map once a permit is purchased.

Colin 24 April, 2015 @ 12:41

Hi there. I was wondering if you could tell me what free activities the forest service or park authorities might have on offer for kids and young people e.g. orientation, nature trails etc. Thanks

OutdoorNI 27 April, 2015 @ 11:58

Hi Colin,

Thanks for your comment. Free activities available for children onsite at Castlewellan Forest Park include the Peace Maze and brand new nature play structure 'Animal Wood'. Details of both can be found in the above description of the forest park as well as the above mentioned green and blue mountain bike trails and walk trails.

For more information on educational visits contact the forest recreation manager directly (028 4377 2240). You might also find this link to educational visits in forest service forests helpful http://bit.ly/1z5eH9w

Nicola Gilbert 17 May, 2015 @ 02:33

We are booked to come camping in June and wondered if we could pay the rangers for one day fishing at the lake? Have been many times but the hubby wants to try his hand at fishing.

OutdoorNI 18 May, 2015 @ 10:27

Hi Nicola,

Thanks for your enquiry. Fishing permits for Castlewellan Lake can be purchased from the Department of Culture, Arts and Leisure (DCAL), Inland Fisheries Group.

T: 0300 200 7860 and they will be able to advise which permit you require and how to purchase it.

More info here: www.nidirect.gov.uk/angling

I hope you both enjoy your time in Castlewellan!

paul mcentee 11 June, 2015 @ 05:47

would you beable to tell me how much the pods are per nite 4 people shareing and would one be availble on friday the12 to sunday 14 june thanks

OutdoorNI 12 June, 2015 @ 13:29

Hi Paul,

There are no camping pods currently in Castlewellan Forest Park. Tent and caravan camping is available, see here for more details: http://www.nidirect.gov.uk/castlewellan-forest-park-2

Perhaps you were referring to the camping pods in Castle Ward, Co. Down? More details can be found here: http://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/article-1356392980020/

Check out our blog ‘Glamping Adventures in Northern Ireland’ for a list of glamping sites available in Northern Ireland, see here: http://www.outdoorni.com/blog/2014/07/09/glamping-adventures-in-northern-ireland/

Liz 29 June, 2015 @ 10:51

Recently I used the designated Castlewellan bridle path starting from the car park and was horrified to discover it now goes through what is obviously a play area for children. A new climbing frame with slide pointing towards the path! We checked the signage . The bridle path sign was clearly pointing us through. This is an accident waiting to happen. What were your planners thinking of?

OutdoorNI 30 June, 2015 @ 11:13

Hi Liz,

Many thanks for your feedback and voicing your concerns regarding the Bridle Path in Castlewellan.

We have been informed that Forest Service NI are currently in the process of rerouting the Bridle Path to avoid the Play Area.

As a valued user of the forest park we would really appreciate further feedback on your experiences as a horse rider in Castlewellan Forest Park and would encourage you to contact the Mourne Forest RecreatIion Officer, Boyd McClurg (028 43 770296 / 07833276878) Boyd@mourneforests.com to discuss your concerns.

EOGHAN O GRADA 5 July, 2015 @ 12:28

does camping have to be booked? What's the process?

OutdoorNI 6 July, 2015 @ 11:41

Hi Eoghan,

The main stay site in Castlewellan Forest Park offers extensive facilities, on tarmac and grass pitches, for the caravan or camping enthusiast. There are toilets and showers, some of which are wheelchair accessible; fresh water; chemical toilet disposal point and electricity hook up for caravans.

For caravanning and camping charges at Castlewellan Forest Park, see 'Forest recreation charges'. Which can be found here:

http://www.nidirect.gov.uk/index/information-and-services/leisure-home-and-community/leisure-and-recreation/outdoor-recreation/forests/forest-recreation-charges.htm

We highly recommend that you book prior to your arrival onsite this can be done by contacting the Forest Ranger: +44 28 4377 8664

Nathan McLaughlin 16 July, 2015 @ 13:54

Hi there, Just a quick enquiry as to is it free to Kayak in the grounds if you are there and paid for Camping and have your own Kayaking Equipment?

Thanks

Nathan McLaughlin

OutdoorNI 17 July, 2015 @ 09:44

Hi Nathan,

Thank you for your enquiry via the Castlewellan Forest Park Local Outdoors Page.

It is possible to bring your own canoe / kayak to Castlewellan Forest Park. There is no extra charge, access to Castlewellan Lake is via a slipway adjoining the car park on your right as your pass the Forest Ranger's hut.

We would advise you follow safety guidance at http://www.canoeni.com/useful-info/safety/

Kate 7 August, 2015 @ 17:49

Hi, I am enquiring about using a site in the park for around 12 persons for either 1 or 2 nights. Would you be able to tell the prices for such activity?

OutdoorNI 10 August, 2015 @ 10:37

Hi Kate,

For caravanning and camping charges at Castlewellan Forest Park see here:

http://www.nidirect.gov.uk/index/information-and-services/leisure-home-and-community/leisure-and-recreation/outdoor-recreation/forests/forest-recreation-charges.htm

We highly recommend that you book prior to your arrival onsite this can be done by contacting the Forest Ranger: +44 28 4377 8664

Louise 18 August, 2015 @ 16:55

Hi I was just wondering, if I phone and book a night for camping, do I have to pay over the phone or can I pay when I arrive?

Thanks

OutdoorNI 19 August, 2015 @ 10:35

Hi Louise,

If you contact the Forest Ranger on +44 28 4377 8664 they will discuss what the payment options are including whether you can pay on the day.

OutdoorNI

David 29 August, 2015 @ 10:34

Hi

Do National trust members have to pay for car parking?

Thanks

OutdoorNI 2 September, 2015 @ 14:35

Many thanks for your enquiry. Castlewellan Forest Park is owned by Forest Service therefore National Trust Membership does not apply to the forest park.

Car parking charges are as follows (there is no fee for pedestrians):

Car £5

Minibus £13

Coach £33.50

Motorcycle £2.50

(Payable on entrance to car park and covers admission to forest)

Allan 17 September, 2015 @ 17:19

Hi,

My wife and I are thinking about kayaking in Castlewellan lake with our inflatable kayaks some time next week. My wife is a paid up member of Forest Service (as we go often to Gosford forest), do we have to pay for parking or are we covered for any Forest Service site.

Many thanks for your time and help.

OutdoorNI 18 September, 2015 @ 09:24

Hi Allan,

Many thanks for your enquiry via Local Outdoors. If you hold an annual car parking permit with Forest Service then this will cover you for any Forest Service site so you would not have to pay car parking at Castlewellan.

Enjoy the kayaking!

Michael 24 September, 2015 @ 16:55

Hi I was just wondering if you are allowed camp fires in castlewellan park?

Thank you in advance.

Michael

OutdoorNI 28 September, 2015 @ 14:12

Hi Michael,

Many thanks for your enquiry.Campfires are not permitted at the Castlewellan Forest Park campsite.

If you have any other questions regarding the campsite and its facilities you can contact the Forest Ranger on +44(0)28 4377 8664 between 10:30-11:30 or 2:00-3:00 Monday to Friday.

Lisa 12 October, 2015 @ 18:12

Is stand-up paddle boarding permitted on castlewellan lake?

OutdoorNI 13 October, 2015 @ 15:44

Hi Lisa,

Yes Stand Up Paddleboarding is permitted.

Enjoy!

Dean 11 December, 2015 @ 12:51

Are dogs allowed in hedge maze?

OutdoorNI 14 December, 2015 @ 11:35

Hi Dean,

Many thanks for your enquiry. Dogs (with the exception of guide dogs) are not permitted in the Peace Maze.

Many thanks,

OutdoorNI

John Shortland 23 March, 2016 @ 03:17

I'm going to the lake for a spot of fishing in a few days and was wondering is it only Brown and rainbow trout in the lake or are there other types of fish

OutdoorNI 23 March, 2016 @ 12:16

Hi John,

Many thanks for your enquiry. The lake is currently stocked with Brown and Rainbow Trout. I hope you enjoy the fishing!

Stephen Keswick 7 April, 2016 @ 13:31

I would like to go fly fishing at the lake in the future but have some question.

1: I have a DCAL rod license but where do you get a Day ticket to fish from.

2:Can you hire a boat to fish. if yes how much does it cost.

3:Can you fish from the bank all the way round the Lake.

4:How deep is the Lake.

thank you.

OutdoorNI 8 April, 2016 @ 11:09

Hi Stephen,

If you contact the DCAL Inland Fisheries Group directly they should be able to answer your queries 0300 200 7860 or dcalangling@dcalni.gov.uk

Tanya 10 April, 2016 @ 16:14

Hello,

My other half and I would like to spend a few days on the campsite in July. Could you tell me how much it would be per night? Does the site also allow small dogs? And finally, how would we get there from Belfast centre?

Many thanks!

Tanya

OutdoorNI 11 April, 2016 @ 11:14

Hi Tanya,

For caravanning and camping charges see here: https://www.nidirect.gov.uk/articles/forest-recreation-charges.

For bookings and further information contact the forest ranger at Castlewellan Forest Park on 028 4377 2240.

Directions from Belfast can be found here http://bit.ly/1qJcIFf

Andrew 21 April, 2016 @ 10:41

Hi,

Is it permitted to bring your own canoe / kayak for use on Castlewellan Lake?

Many thanks!

OutdoorNI 21 April, 2016 @ 11:47

Hi Andrew,

It is possible to bring your own canoe / kayak to Castlewellan Forest Park.

Access to Castlewellan Lake is via a slipway in adjoining the car park on your right as your pass the Forest Ranger's hut.

We would advise you follow safety guidance at http://www.canoeni.com/useful-info/safety/

Enjoy!

Dougie Treverton 19 May, 2016 @ 17:03

I was wondering is it possible to bring along 2 large coaches with approximately 110 Year 10 students to Castlewellan Forest Park on Monday 20th June 2016.It is a joint School Programme with the EA Youth Service and we plan to do team challenges and team games on the grass areas and use the Maze. Is this possible and will there be a charge?? Many thanks, Dougie Treverton, Youth Development Worker

Ruairi 21 May, 2016 @ 00:07

Are you allowed to have fires on the site?

OutdoorNI 23 May, 2016 @ 09:52

Hi Dougie,

Thanks for your enquiry. A list of recreation charges including for coaches can be found here https://www.nidirect.gov.uk/articles/forest-recreation-charges. For more information on recreation charges etc contact the Forest Ranger on +44(0)28 4377 8664 between 10:30-11:30 or 2:00-3:00 Monday to Friday.

OutdoorNI 23 May, 2016 @ 09:57

Hi Ruairi,

Campfires are not permitted at the Castlewellan Forest Park campsite. If you have any other questions regarding the campsite and its facilities you can contact the Forest Ranger on +44(0)28 4377 8664 between 10:30-11:30 or 2:00-3:00 Monday to Friday.

angry angler 13 June, 2016 @ 23:21

Went for an evening's fishing with my friend and our two children, didn't turn out so well, it started off with ignorant dog owners watching their dogs ( all of leads ) swimming over our fishing lines, eating out of our fishing bags and barking and scaring our kids. They never apologized as usual. I thought all dogs were supposed to be on leads!!! Then if that wasn't enough, two guys decided to inflate a kayak and come close to our lines and one of the guys decides to swim around instead. I thought you weren't allowed to swim in the lake!!!. I pay my way every year with all the correct licence's and have to put up with this ignorance. Get it sorted once and for all. Get the proper signs up as you can well afford it with the car park prices you charge. On behalf of all anglers. Grrrrrrrr

OutdoorNI 14 June, 2016 @ 09:18

Thank you for your comments they have been passed onto Forest Service who manage the Forest Park.

sharon bannon 19 June, 2016 @ 13:51

im just wondering if its 5.00 per day for parking.and is it dog friendly

OutdoorNI 20 June, 2016 @ 10:35

Hi Sharon,

Many thanks for your enquiry via Local Outdoors. Yes it is £5 per car per day for parking and dogs are allowed in the forest park. Forest Service NI state that dog owners can bring dogs into forests and woodlands, provided they:

Always keep their dogs under control

Don't allow their dogs to distress other forest users or wildlife

Dog owners should be responsible and clear up after their dogs to avoid problems for other walkers.

Iwona 20 July, 2016 @ 19:20

Can you advise me whether campers with a tent are able to hook to an electricity box? Or is it only for campervans?

Miriam 27 July, 2016 @ 16:23

Hi, Hoping to visit this weekend but I see the Animal Wood is designed for 4+ year olds; our daughter is 2; is there anything suitable for her (apart from the maze/walks)?

OutdoorNI 27 July, 2016 @ 16:40

Hi Miriam,

Thank you for your message, some parts of animal wood have been enjoyed by under 4's when supervised by an adult…such as the foxes den and the deer.

There is a great family trail around the lake which can be explored by bike. Should you not have any bikes with you bike hire is available from Life Adventure Centre Located in the Courtyard beside the main car park. For little ones with little legs Life Adventure Centre have kid bike trailers called ‘Wee Woos’ available for hire so they don’t miss out on all the fun.

Phone:028 4377 0714

Email: iwant@onegreatadventure.com

Kathy 1 August, 2016 @ 20:06

Hi. Was wondering can you take boat or a dingy out on the lake.

Thanks

OutdoorNI 2 August, 2016 @ 16:21

Hi Iwona,

We are a promotional website for outdoor spaces in Northern Ireland and do not manage the campsite ourselves. If you have any questions regarding the campsite and its facilities you can contact the Forest Ranger on +44(0)28 4377 8664 between 10:30-11:30 or 2:00-3:00 Monday to Friday.

OutdoorNI 3 August, 2016 @ 16:34

HI Kathy,

Non motorised boats are permitted on the lake.

Contact

+44 (0) 28 4377 2240

Location

Castlewellan
Co. Down
BT31 9BU

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