Day out: Meelmore Lodge, County Down
Meelmore Lodge is so well positioned that you don’t even need a car to begin your day of exploring, just wake up and walk directly from your tent or room into the Mourne Mountains
If the Mourne Mountains are the walking Mecca of Northern Ireland, then Meelmore Lodge is the hiker’s haven that lies at its heart.
With a location on the lower slopes of Slieve Meelmore, guests can embark on some of the region’s most famous hikes directly from the front door. Simply wake up, tie your boots, and go.
Walks from Meelmore Lodge
You don’t even have to cross a road to begin classic mountain circuits over Slieve Meelmore, Slieve Meelbeg, Slieve Binnian and Slieve Commedagh. Lower down there is direct access to the two-day, 22.3-mile Mourne Way, with the scenic trails and lush tree canopies of Tollymore Forest Park just a short stroll away.
Stay at Meelmore Lodge
The friendly complex offers a choice of accommodation, including self-catering, and a campsite is open in the summer months. Services are completed by a café – which serves breakfast and lunch – and a secure car park.
Meelmore Lodge: camping (£10/£5 per adult/child), hostel dorm rooms (£25 per person) and private rooms (£35 per person), and self-catering cottage (£120 for two).
Helen Fairbairn has worked as a professional outdoor writer for the past 20 years.