Murlough Beach

Murlough Beach

Murlough Beach is a Blue Flag beach which comprises a wide flat sandy beach with a 2 m wide pebble ridge above high water mark.

Murlough Beach is backed by an ancient sand dune system throughout its 6 km length. A large area of the dunes is designated as a National Nature Reserve. The Nature Reserve is a fragile 6,000 year old sand dune system. It is an excellent area for walking and bird watching due to its spectacular location at the edge of Dundrum Bay and the Mourne Mountains.

The dune fields at Murlough are the best and most extensive example of dune heath within Ireland with over 600 species of butterflies and moths, one of which, the Marsh Fritillary butterfly, is of European importance. The site is internationally important for wintering wildfowl and waders.

The entire area of Murlough Beach lies within the Mournes and Slieve Croob Area of Outstanding Beauty and the Murlough Special Area for Conservation. It includes woodland and heath with an array of butterflies and wild flowers and is internationally important for wintering wildfowl and waders. It is also a haul-out site for Common and Grey seals.

Excellent water quality.

RNLI Lifeguard Service in Bathing Season as well as Life Saving equipment on Murlough Beach.


Accessible parking
Disabled car parking and disabled access is available via board walk paths.
Caravan park available within the National Trust car park.

Opening Hours

Access all year round.

Facilities Open seasonally



Admission Charged when Facilities Open.



See access charges.

Getting There

By car

Murlough Beach is situated off the A2 Newcastle to Clough road 5 km from Newcastle and 5 km from Clough. The National Trust Car park sign posted from the A2.

By bus

A number of bus routes pass the entrance to Murlough Beachgiving access to the beach (stop 12 arches).

By cycle

A cycle route follows the A2.

Walk Trails

Circular, 2.5 miles

Murlough National Nature Reserve. Nature Trail.

Linear, 8 miles

Dundrum to Newcastle Walk. Countryside, Coast and Village.

Linear, 26 miles

Mourne Way. Through the heart of the Mourne Mountains.

Circular, 0.3 miles

Dundrum Castle Woods Trail. Dundrum Castle Woods.

Circular, 28 miles

Newcastle Way. A circular route taking in the diverse scenery of Co Down.

Cycling Routes

Circular, 25 miles

Newcastle /Lough Island Reavy Route. Circular route with spectacular scenery in the Mournes.

Linear, 1.7 miles

Dundrum Coastal Path. A short coastal cycle with views across Dundrum Inner Bay.

Circular, 1 miles

Tollymore Mountain Bike Skills Course. A purpose designed skills course.

Circular, 25 miles

Slieve Croob Cycle Route. A route that offers stunning views of the Mourne Mountains and Slieve Croob Mountains.

Canoeing Routes

Murlough Bay. On the North Coast Sea Kayak Trail Canoe Trail.

Outdoor Activity Centres

+44(0)7703 209989

Blokart World. We go where the conditions for the sport are good at that time. Due to the nature of the sport beaches are well suited to blokart sailing..

+44(0)79 7340 8056

Outdoor Ireland North. Outdoor Ireland North specialises in small group guided mountain hikes, countryside walks and road cycling trips..

Other Activities

Blokart World is Ireland's leading Blokart school. Providing Blokart sales & training across the country.

Horse Riding
No horses in the restricted areas between 1 April and 30 Sept when Award Flag is Flying.
No permit is needed for horse riding on Murlough Beach but all riders must have their own Public Liability Insurance.


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+44 (0) 28 4375 1467


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