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8 Mourne Mountain Hotels That Make A Great Base Camp

8 Mourne Mountain Hotels That Make A Great Base Camp

In search of Mourne Mountain hotels a short spin from endless trail starting points? You’ve found ’em!

The Mourne Mountains are the highest and most awe-inspiring mountain range in Northern Ireland

A dream destination for hikers, climbers and adventurers, the Mournes have also inspired artists from painters, to poets, writers and storytellers.

Below, you’ll find some exception hotels near the Mourne Mountains that make a great base to explore from!

Our favourite Mourne Mountain hotels

Kilmorey Arms Hotel

Photos via

The first section of our guide is packed with our favourite Mourne Mountain Hotels, with a mix of low-range, mid-range and pricey stays.

Note: if you book a stay through one of the links below we may make a tiny commission that helps us keep this site going. You won’t pay extra, but we really do appreciate it.

1. Slieve Donard (Newcastle)

Slieve Donard Hotel

Photos via Slieve Donard on FB

Arguably the fanciest of the Mourne Mountain Hotels, you’ll find the Slieve Donard nestled at the foot of the Mournes within six acres of immaculately maintained grounds.

The hotel is around a 20-minute walk from the starting point for the Slieve Donard walk (the highest of the Mournes).

A favourite with golfers, the hotel is framed on one side by the Royal County down golf course and a golden strand beach on the other.

For the non-golf fans (or those needing relaxation and recovery after their game), the Victorian hotel is also home to a luxury spa designed in conjunction with ESPA.

Fancy an afternoon tea? From Mondays to Saturdays, you can indulge yourself with a selection of savoury and sweet treats, complimented by your choice of teas or coffee.

2. The Rostrevor Inn (Rostrevor)

Rostrevor Inn

Photos via

This beautifully refurbished 18th century building is a great option for groups in search of hotels near the Mourne Mountains with rooms that can sleep 4 people+.

The hotel is a handy 25-minute drive from the Carrick Little Car Park, which is where you’ll start the Slieve Binnian walk.

The Crawford family first started serving drinks on this premises in the mid-19th century and today, you’ll find a charming traditional bar, atmospheric Stables snugs and a bistro serving delicious food.

The Inn also has seven ensuite bedrooms that cater for everyone, from singles to families and there’s a live events programme featuring local artists.

The hotel is at the entrance to the Fairy Glen and Kilbroney Park, home of the Narnia Trail and many of Ireland’s mountain biking trails, making it a good base for outdoors activity fans.

3. Hillyard House Hotel (Castlewellan)

Hillyard House Hotel

Photos via

Another of our favourite Mourne Mountain Hotels sits at the gates to Castlewellan Forest Park in the historic market town of Castlewellan – Hillyard House Hotel.

This place is a 10-minute drive from the start of the Slieve Donard hike and a 25-minute drive from the Slieve Binnian starting point.

The Yard Restaurant and Mrs Coleman’s Bar are where you can sample Irish food and drink at its best and soak up the atmosphere.

The Yard Restaurant, for example, has a salt meat aging chamber in the restaurant and it offers locally-sourced Irish beef cooked to perfection on the broiler, as well as fresh bread baked in-house.

Things to do nearby include getting lost in the Castlewellan Peace Maze, taking an early evening stroll around the lake or touring the Whitewater Brewery.

4. Kilmorey Arms Hotel (Kilkeel)

Kilmorey Arms Hotel

Photos via

The Kilmorey Arms Hotel is one of a few family-run hotels near the Mourne Mountains, and it’s well worth considering. This place prides itself on its top-notch accommodation and locally sourced cuisine.

This hotel is 15-minutes from the Silent Valley and a 20-minute drive from the start of the Slieve Bearnagh Walk.

All the fish and shellfish are sourced from less than a mile away and the hotel was awarded Taste of Ulster 2016 in recognition of its use of carefully selected local and seasonal quality food.

The set menu offers starters such as soup of the day served with Guinness wheaten bread or a rich and creamy seafood chowder, while mains vary from the gourmet burger made from Mourne beef and stacked with bacon, cheese, lettuce, gherkins and sauce or the ever-popular beer-battered fish and chips. 

Other great hotels in the Mourne Mountains

Denvir's Coaching Inn

Photos via

The second section of our Mourne Mountain Hotels guide contains a handful of other places to stay close to the action.

Below, you’ll find the Donard, Denvir’s Coaching Inn and several highly reviewed hotels near the Mourne Mountains.

1. The Donard (Newcastle)

The Donard

Photos via

Another of the more popular Mourne Mountain Hotels is the Donard in Newcastle. This well-established family run hotel has 19 comfortable bedrooms, tastefully decorated, and a lift service as well as facilities for the less able-bodied.

Thanks to its location in Newcastle, it’s the perfect starting point for many of the Mourne Mountains walks. The Donard building dates to around 1898 and it has dominated the northern end of Main Street for nearly 120 years.

However, don’t let its age fool you – this place is clean, cosy and perfect to explore from.

The Maginn family have been running the hotel since 1946 and over the years, it has been extensively renovated to bring it up to date and to meet 21st century guest expectations.

2. The Whistledown Hotel (Warrenpoint)

Whistledown Hotel

Photos via

Located right on the seafront, the Whistledown Hotel offers a taste of 1950s seaside nostalgia made 21st century comfortable.

It’s a short, 25-minute drive from the Ott car park where you can start the Slieve Doan walk and/or the Slieve Meelmore and Meelbeg hike.

Thanks to its lough side location and the Mourne Mountains in the background, the hotel is a popular place for weddings and other events and offers packages for those wanting somewhere special to gather with family, friends or colleagues.

3. Harbour House Inn (Newcastle)

Harbour House Inn

Photos via

The Connolly family have been serving people from near and afar in the Harbour House Inn for more than 40 years.

The eight ensuite bedrooms boast panoramic views of Dundrum Bay and the inn is well-known for its fabulous breakfasts served between 8am-11am.

The South Prom Brew Bar is open from 8.30am to 5pm and there are regular quiz nights, live music events at the weekend and traditional music sessions on Sundays.

This is another of the Mourne Mountains hotels finely place for Donard, Tollymore Forest and many of the other trails in the area.

4. Denvir’s Coaching Inn (Downpatrick)

Denvir's Coaching Inn

Photos via

Fancy a real taste of history? You don’t get much older than Denvir’s – the oldest surviving coaching inn in Ireland and a grade ‘A’ listed building.

While the inn itself has been extensively renovated, it has retained its original character, allowing you to easily envisage the Northern Ireland of centuries gone by when inns provided respite for those on long journeys.

There are six beautifully restored bedrooms, a restaurant, lounge and snug bars as well as two function rooms for hire. Food is served in a proper old-fashioned dining room beside a huge 17th century fireplace.

Although a bit further out than some of the places above, Denvir’s is less than 35 minutes from all of the major trails.

FAQs about where to stay near the Mournes

We’ve had a lot of questions over the years asking about everything from ‘Where’s closest to Donard?’ to ‘What’s a good base to hike from?’.

In the section below, we’ve popped in the most FAQs that we’ve received. If you have a question that we haven’t tackled, ask away in the comments section below.

What are some good hotels near the Mourne Mountains?

Slieve Donard (Newcastle), Hillyard House Hotel (Newcastle) and The Rostrevor Inn (Rostrevor) are three great Mourne Mountain Hotels.

Where should you stay when hiking the Mournes?

The most obvious base to explore the Mournes from is Newcastle, but Rostrevor, Downpatrick and Warrenpoint are good options, too.

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