A few ideas for places to visit
Ringed by mountains and located within the Mourne Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, has become an important visitor attraction in Northern Ireland. It attracts around 50,000 visitors per year most of whom come to enjoy the peace and solitude of this mountain area with its unique landscapes and varied wildlife. Visit Silent Valley website for more info.
Our cottages are beneath the majestic Mourne Mountains allowing you to walk from the door and be top of the world a few hours later.
Mourne Maritime Visitor Centre
The Mourne Maritime Visitor Centre is situated in the Nautilus Centre overlooking Kilkeel harbour, which is home to Northern Ireland’s largest fishing fleet.
There has been a tradition of fishing in the area since the first settlers made Mourne their home. Over the years farming and fishing were interlinked as depending on the season most local farmers also had a small skiff boat to chase the herring and the abundant fish stocks. Kilkeel harbour grew from the mid 18th century and became a port for local schooners to export potatoes, granite and grain and import coal and supplies.
The maritime centre charts the history of the local harbour and the development of fishing and maritime links through the years. Children can visit our wheelhouse and have a go at steering into Kilkeel port or they can play our interactive games. The “Anna” is our largest exhibit and you can get a feeling how hard fishermen’s lives were, when it had to be launched with just fishermen lifting it into the harbour. There are also displays on boat building, changes in fishing, deep sea mariners, shipwrecks & disasters and the role of the RNLI. Outside the Nautilus Centre is the Memorial to all those who have been lost at Sea and the Memorial Book commemorating all those lost at sea can be viewed in the Maritime Centre.
Countryside walks by Cahal G. King
A book of ten countryside walks designed by the author. Walks included range between 5.0 and 9.2 miles long. Detailed route descriptions, directions and route map for each walk.
Photographs for each walk, allowing the reader to anticipate the terrain and scenery.
Seascope at Kilkeel Harbour
Seascope says: We want to make your trip to Seascope as rewarding as possible. We are a unique establishment and the only one of its kind in Northern Ireland. We have lots to see with access to our hatchery, you will be able to see firsthand what we do and how we do it. You will be able to see all the baby lobsters and how we feed them
We also have our resident lobster for everyone to view. We also display a wealth of information on lobsters and other marine animals of interest to our hatchery as well as the fishing industry and the importance of research and improving sustainability. There is also a wide range of interactive activities for all ages and something to interest everyone. Our staff are very knowledgeable and would love to answer any of your questions as well as making your time here worthwhile as possible.
Game of Thrones in the Mournes
Experience the real locations used by Game of Thrones. Start off in County Down at Winterfell in Castle Ward, then Audleys Castle which was Robb starks Camp. Follow the road along the river Quoile then head for the Mournes and to Tollymore Forest Park which has become the Haunted Forest. Drive through to Spelga, the last location to be used then on to our cottages and relax and watch the Box Set in front of a lovely open fire.
Mourne Seafood Cookery School
The Mourne seafood Cookery School is located on the 1st floor of the Nautilus Centre overlooking Kilkeel Harbour.
You will find the freshest fish and seafood at the home of Northern Ireland’s largest fishing fleet.
For those seafood lovers this is an ideal way to learn more about buying, handling and cooking seafood.
It is a fun, relaxed, learning experience.
Electric Bikes hire - A ‘Buzz’ with Bikes!
Life Adventure Centre offers first Electric Mountain Bikes in Ireland.
The Castlewellan Centre has taken delivery of the first E-Mountain Bikes in Ireland offering an exceptionally unique opportunity to get a real buzz on a bike!
Part of a growing cycling trend in mainland Europe, electric assist bikes have grown in both capability and popularity with the current offering a market leading Kreidler Mountain Bike from Germany with integrated e-assist options.
Life Adventure Centre, which has always sought to meet the needs of both the recreation and tourism cyclist has went to great lengths to source the bikes as part of its wider offering as the trail head provider for the Castlewellan National Mountain Bike Trail Centre.
Offering an extensive service to cyclists, in particular the off-road, trail and mountain bike disciplines, the Life Adventure Centre has seen a constant growth in the demand for a high quality off-road, trail and mountain bike hire and tour service across the Mournes destination.
G I Trail The Patton Trail
Retrace the Footsteps of the American GI’s in Northern Ireland. Kilkeel featured highly in the War effort with Mourne Park being the base for the 5th Infantry Division. Its at Greencastle and Dunavil that you can still see remains of the runways, watch towers and the Bomber Training Buildings.
Mourne Habitats and Wildlife
The Mournes includes a remarkable range of wildlife habitats, from marine and coastal environments stretching between Carlingford Lough and Dundrum bay to the uplands of the Mourne Mountains and Slieve Croob.
On our coasts you can expect to see Kittiwakes, Sand Martins and Fritillary butterflies.
The mountains provide habitat for rare plants for example the juniper species and safe sites for ravens and peregrine falcons
Mountains of Mourne Country Cottages Ltd,
Hanna's Close, Aughnahoory Road, Kilkeel,
County Down, Northern Ireland, BT34 4AH
Telephone: (028) 4176 5999 uk | + 44 28 4176 5999 intl