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The most famous of the mountains in the country

The Mournes are visited by many tourists, hillwalkers, cyclists and rock climbers. The mountains are immortalised in a song written by Percy French in 1896, 'Mountains o'Mourne' and famously by Don McLean. They also influenced C.S. Lewis to write The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe.

The climb to Slieve Donard Summit can be strenuous but worth it for spectacular views; the Co. Down coast, Newcastle town, Murlough Dunes and on a clear day Scrabo Tower to the North and the Isle of Man to the East.

The Glen River Path leads up to the saddle, or col, between Donard and Commedagh and the Mourne Wall, a well known feature in the Mournes.

One of the last active granite quarries in the Mournes is Thomas's Quarry. It is from here the 47 tonne, 40 feet (12m) long Delamont Millennium stone was quarried, the highest modern standing stone in Northern Ireland.

Another place to explore is Bloody Bridge. The name refers to a massacre at the site during the 1641 rebellion; the bodies of slain prisoners were thrown over the bridge into the river, turning the water red.

Finally, take a wander along the Mourne Coast Path, which is hugely important for the access it affords visitors to an otherwise generally inaccessible coastline.

The paths run from the rocky coastline of Dundrum Bay to the lower slopes of the Mourne Mountains, linking ‘true’ mountain with open sea.

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