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Walking in Northern Ireland: Mourne Mountains

Walking in Northern Ireland: Mourne Mountains

Northern Ireland is a dream for walking enthusiasts. The beautiful and diverse landscape of Northern Ireland means there are walks for people of all levels and with such an assorted offering, there’s a perfect walk for everyone. In this post we’re focusing on the magnificent Mourne Mountains.

About the Mourne Mountains

The Mourne Mountains are the highest mountain range in Northern Ireland, boasting some of the most dramatic peaks in the country and summits crowned by granite tors.

Intertwined throughout the Mourne Mountains is a complex network of paths and tracks that is a walker’s paradise. So much so that the area has been voted ‘Best Walking Destination’ in Northern Ireland, in part due to the amazing opportunities for walkers of all levels to explore and take in the wonderful surroundings.

The Mourne Mountains are divided into two distinct areas:

The Eastern or ‘High’ Mournes
The Western or ‘Low’ Mournes

If you’ve never visited the area you’ll be impressed with the variety of different landscapes you will find as you traverse the mountain range.

Where are the Mourne Mountains?

You can find this impressive mountain range in the beautiful County Down, just 31 miles south of Belfast.

Walking routes in the Mourne Mountains

Here are some of the most popular walking routes in the Mourne Mountains

(some of these walks will fall into more than one category so please research them before you go)

Coastal walks

Annalong Coastal Path

Bloody Bridge Coastal Route

Easy walks

Blue Lough

Bunkers Hill Walk

CastleWellan Forest Park


Fairy Glen

Hanna’s Close – The Green Lane Walk

Silent Valley Nature Trail

Tollymore Forest Park – River Trail

Woodland walks

Montalto Estate Garden/Lake/Woodland Walk

Kilbroney Tree Trail

The Giant’s Lair Slieve Gullion

Tollymore Forest Park – Mountain & Drinks Trail

Steep/Mountain walks

Slieve Donard, Commedagh, Bearnagh

Trassey to Bloody Bridge

Slieve Binnian

Rocky Mountain

Granite Trail

Donard Forest Walk

The highest six peaks at Mourne Mountains

Want to challenge yourself by scaling the highest peaks? Thinking about attempting all six?

Slieve Donard – 853m
Slieve Commedagh – 765m
Slieve Binnian – 747m
Slieve Bearnagh – 739m
Slieve Meelbeg – 708m
Meelmore – 704m

Points of interest

Probably the most famous landmark at Mourne Mountains is the Mourne Wall. Originally built to keep cattle and sheep out of the water catchment area of the Silent Valley reservoir, it took 18 years to complete and was finally finished in 1922. The stone wall reaches 8ft high and is 3ft wide taking up a 22 mile stretch of the Mournes.