Listed below are just a few of the many walks this area has to offer, which include forest walks, coastal walks, lowland or upland walks in the high Mournes. Kilkeel has a Heritage Town Trail which is a walking tour of the main points of interest and historical sites.
Brochures, route maps and details of guided walks and walking festivals in the area can be obtained from Kilkeel Tourist Information Centre, Nautilus Centre, Rooney Road, tel (028) 4176 2525.
The Kilkeel Riverwalk was established in 1998 and provides a scenic tranquil 10 min dander from the Lower Square to the harbour.
Distance: 5 miles, height gain 180m; Duration: 2.5 hrs; Rating: Easy family walk
This walk provides an easy introduction to the Mountains of Mourne giving a mountain atmosphere whilst following gentle gradients and making use of distinct tracks and pathways. Strong footwear is recommended.
Distance: 1¼ miles, height gain 50m; Duration: 1 hr; Rating: Easy family walk
Cnocnafeola Wood is a pine forest 8km north of Kilkeel on the B27. It can be reached from the northern Mournes, also via the B27, and is some 4km south of Spelga Dam.
Cranfield, Greencastle, Mill Bay
Distance: 5 miles; Duration: 3 hrs; Rating: Easy
Starting point: at Cranfield and follows the shore west from the holiday centre of Cranfield to the village of Greencastle.
Distance: 5.5 miles, height gain 210m; Duration: 3.5 hrs; Rating: Easy
The approach to Lough Shannagh is from a discreet car park in the B27, 7km north of Kilkeel on east side of the road. A track locally known as The Banns Road leads to the hills.
Distance: approx 58km
The Mourne Way is almost entirely off-road and traverses the foothills of the high Mournes in the north and along the western Mournes to reach the foot of Slieve Martin and Rostrevor in the south. The complete route is located within the Mourne Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
Distance: 1½ miles; Duration: 1 hr; Rating: Easy family walk
This is a circular walk through the Kilkeel River Valley. The trail is level with an all weather surface with no steps or steep inclines and interpretation panels along the trail will give you information on the wildlife and landscape that surrounds you. Normal entrance charges to Silent Valley apply. The Silent Valley is sign posted for drivers travelling south from Newcastle and north from Kilkeel.
Distance: 7 miles, height gain 747m; Duration: 3.5 hrs; Terrain: good tracks on the lower ground and some good hill paths.
The Carrick Little Car Park is at the junction of the Head Road and Oldtown Road near Annalong. Slieve Binnian has a very rugged crest of rocky tors, which makes it easy to identify in view around the Mountains of Mourne.