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  • Mon to Fri09:00 - 17:00
  • Saturday09:00 - 13:00
  • SundayClosed

Giant's Causeway & the Mountains of Mourne

Ulster’s finest, in one holiday!

  • Northern Ireland

  • 12 nights
  • Breakfast & Dinner
  • Culture

  • Sep

    Oct

Moderate

What does this mean?

Tour codes: 75270

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Our holiday walking grades

Moderate

Grade 5

Full day walks with moderate amounts of ascent and descent.

The paths are mostly good, but there may be some steep and rough ground.

Walks will last up to 6 hours and could involve as much as 750m of ascent and descent. Some walks will be less demanding.

Grade 6

Full day walks with appreciable amounts of ascent and descent.

These walks are in more remote areas such as Andorra or northern Portugal.

Similar to Grade 5, but with most of the walks at the upper level of ascent/descent, time and distance.

Overview

Holiday Highlights

  • Discover the legendary hexagonal rocks of the Giant’s Causeway
  • Dunseverick Castle, perched on rocks above the sea and the Carrick-a-Rede rope bridge, originally built hundreds of years ago by salmon fishermen
  • Reach the summit of the highest mountain in Ulster
  • Enjoy views to Scotland and the Isle of Man
  • Tick off the best of the 700m peaks

Enjoy the chance to see the very best of the north of Ireland on our new combination holiday. We start on the north in Ballycastle. From here we explore the coast and the Glens of Antrim with fine walking and ever-present views of the coast and mountains and occasionally across to Scotland. A standout will be the visit to the Giant’s Causeway, a world-renowned geological formation. 

Next we travel south to the Mountains of Mourne. This granite outcrop rises from the sea up to 850m at Slieve Donard, the highest point. Covering a small area geographically the range offers lovely walking with a chance to take in far reaching views. During the holiday we plan to reach  the summit of Slieve Donard plus a few more peaks over 700m. We will walk along the Mourne Wall completed in 1922. The dry stone wall which is almost 5 feet high crosses 15 of the highest peaks in the area. It is estimated to be 19.5 miles long. 

The walks are generally on good trails but there are unmarked sections and some steep ground. The views spread out in all directions rewarding the effort of the climb. 


  • Half board accommodation (breakfasts & dinners taken in the hotels)
  • Flights to and from Belfast International Airport
  • Transfers to and from the airport and in between centres
  • Private coach transport to and from the trailheads
  • Services of a dedicated tour leader
  • Entrance fees (unless otherwise specified)
  • Personal expenses (such as your bar bill)
  • Discretionary tips
  • Optional excursions
  • Travel Insurance

Holiday Information

Click the button below for a detailed Holiday Information Sheet containing all the particulars about this trip.

NOTE: Itineraries and Holiday Information Sheets can vary by a specific date chosen

View Holiday Information Sheet

Itinerary & Travel

Itinerary Details

Whilst every effort will be made to adhere to the outlined itinerary and advertised programme, local conditions can change due to weather or other unforeseen circumstances. This may mean that routes and timings need to be amended or the order of days may change, sometimes at short notice.

Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, we may unfortunately need to withdraw a tour that is currently confirmed to operate and we therefore reserve the right to cancel your booking. We would always do our utmost to give you plenty of notice should we have to do this. Selected elements of this tour, including local attractions and restaurants, may change at late notice. Please ensure you have valid insurance cover before you travel.

Your Itinerary

Day 1

Ballycastle

Meals

Dinner

Accommodation

Your flight will arrive into Belfast International Airport and you will be transferred to your hotel in Ballycastle. Dinner is in the hotel restaurant each evening.

Day 2

The Glenariff Forest Park

Meals

Breakfast & Dinner

Accommodation

  • Time

    4.5 hours

  • Distance

    7 miles

  • Ascent/Descent

    300m

TToday the walk in Glenariff Forest Park starts at the entrance to the forest park. In the late 1800s and early 1900s tourists were brought to the top of the glen by narrow gauge railway and transported down to the waterfalls by horse drawn vehicles. Glenariff is widely considered be the most beautiful of the 9 Glens

Day 3

Carrick-a-Rede & the Giants Causeway

Meals

Breakfast & Dinner

Accommodation

  • Time

    4.5 hours

  • Distance

    7 miles

  • Ascent/Descent

    240m

Today is a classic day that will doubtless be the holiday highlight for many. We also plan to visit Ballintoy Harbour and Dunseverick Castle on our walk today, visiting two National Trust properties, one of which is a World Heritage Site.

Day 4

Ballycastle Forest & Knocklayd

Meals

Breakfast & Dinner

Accommodation

  • Time

    5 hours

  • Distance

    8 miles

  • Ascent/Descent

    530m

Knocklayd dominates the area around Ballycastle and provides amazing views from the top.  We start out on the Moyle Way before branching off to the top of Knocklayd (514m) and hopefully fantastic views. The walk is circular from the hotel with no transport necessary.

Day 5

Trostan

Meals

Breakfast & Dinner

Accommodation

  • Time

    5 hours

  • Distance

    7 miles

  • Ascent/Descent

    314m

Trostan is the highest peak in Count Antrim at 550m. Our route follows a disused railway line for some of the climb. The railway was used for iron ore mining in the past. We descend on part of the Moyle May past a lovely waterfall. Expect beautiful views of Lurig and Tievebulliagh to the north as well as Rathlin Island.

Day 6

Fair Head & Murlough Bay

Meals

Breakfast & Dinner

Accommodation

  • Time

    5 hours

  • Distance

    7 miles

  • Ascent/Descent

    270/420m

A very scenic walk today, incorporating the cliffs above Fair Head and a descent to the sea at Murlough Bay.

Day 7

Newcastle, NI

Meals

Breakfast & Dinner

Accommodation

We transfer back to the airport with our fellow travellers who are returning home. At the airport we will meet up with new arrivals and drive about 1 hour to Newcastle. Dinner is in the hotel tonight and every night in Newcastle. The hotel is about 15 mins walk from the beach so you might like to stroll down for a look around if time allows.

Day 8

The Seefins and Chimney Rock Mountain

Meals

Breakfast & Dinner

Accommodation

  • Time

    6 hours

  • Distance

    8 miles

  • Ascent/Descent

    650m

The Seefins are some of the lesser trodden peaks in the Mournes as walkers concentrate on the higher peaks but they are a hidden gem, well worth some effort.  We will start and finish at Rourkes Park and take in Chimney Rock Mountain too.  

Day 9

The Meelbegs

Meals

Breakfast & Dinner

Accommodation

  • Time

    6 hours

  • Distance

    8.5 miles

  • Ascent/Descent

    700m

This fine route is one of the major ridges in the high Mournes.  Taking in Slieve Loughshannagh (619m), Slieve Meelbeg (708m) and Slieve Meelmore (687m) we walk along the Mourne Wall as it traverses all 3 peaks.  We start and finish at Meelmore Lodge with time for some refreshment before returning to Newcastle.

Day 10

Slieve Binnian

Meals

Breakfast & Dinner

Accommodation

  • Time

    6 hours

  • Distance

    7 miles

  • Ascent/Descent

    710m

This fine loop walk over Slieve Binnian (747m) is one of the most popular in the Mournes. Its rocky tors are quite spectacular and the views into the Silent Valley are quite stunning.  Our circuit will take us down past the Blue Lough to Carrick Little where we started with hopefully a cuppa in the  charming café there before departing.

Day 11

Pierce's Castle and Rocky Mountain

Meals

Breakfast & Dinner

Accommodation

This lovely circuit is in the lesser used Western Mournes.  Starting at Leitrim Lodge picnic area we walk a section of the Mourne Way, then following a path by the Yellow Water river we reach the ridge of Pierces Castle, Tournamrock and Rocky Mountain.  We return to Leitrim Lodge for our pick up.  

  • Time

    5 hours

  • Distance

    7 miles

  • Ascent/Descent

    530m

This lovely circuit is in the lesser used Western Mournes.  Starting at Leitrim Lodge picnic area we walk a section of the Mourne Way, then following a path by the Yellow Water river we reach the ridge of Pierces Castle, Tournamrock and Rocky Mountain.  We return to Leitrim Lodge for our pick up.  

Day 12

Slieve Donard

Meals

Breakfast & Dinner

Accommodation

  • Time

    6 hours

  • Distance

    7 miles

  • Ascent/Descent

    870m

Slieve Donard (853m) is Northern Ireland’s highest peak and well worth the effort to reach the top.  It’s a steady climb and not technically difficult.  We start at Bloody Bridge and return by the Glen River path into Newcastle walking back to the hotel.

Day 13

Final day

Meals

Breakfast

After breakfast we transfer back to the airport for our flights home.

From (GBP)£2,099

Departure dates for your selected tour

3rd Sep 2022 - 15th Sep 2022 (12 Nights)

1st Oct 2022 - 13th Oct 2022 (12 Nights)

Accommodation

Accommodation information

Below is the accommodation featured on this holiday across all departure dates. Please refer to the Itinerary for more detail about each night's accommodation for each departure date.

Marine Hotel

The three star Marine Hotel occupies a prominent seafront location in the heart of the Causeway Coast and Glens on the North Antrim Coast. The hotel overlooks a beautiful golden beach and the picturesque marina in the seaside town of Ballycastle. You will be accommodated in comfortable standard bedrooms which have tea and coffee making facilities. Free Wi-Fi is available in the public areas of the hotel. All meals are taken in the hotel's restaurant which overlooks the sea front.

Burrendale Hotel

Featuring views of the Mourne Mountains, the Burrendale Hotel and Spa is less than 1 mile from the beach at Newcastle. Comfortable rooms have en suite bathrooms, flat-screen TVs, Wi-Fi, and tea & coffeemaking facilities. Amenities include 2 restaurants and a country-style bar, as well as afternoon tea served in the lounge. There's also a fitness centre with an indoor heated pool, a sauna and a steam room, plus a day spa and a hair salon.

Trip Information

All the details you need

Holiday Grade

This is a Grade 6 moderate holiday which includes full day walks with appreciable amounts of ascent and descent with walks in some remote areas. Paths are mostly good, but there may be some steep and rough ground. Walks will last up to 6 hours and could involve as much as 750m of ascent and descent. See the 'Proposed Itinerary' section for more information.

Walks & Excursions

Local Transport Costs

All local transport costs in conjunction with the advertised activity programme are included in the holiday cost. There may be occasions where additional visits or excursions are added to enrich your experience, these will be paid for locally by you if you choose to participate. Local transport can be a mix of private hire coaches, taxis, local buses and ferries depending on the itinerary.

Optional Excursions

A range of local excursions and activities may be available to book at your destination through a local operator. We have no involvement in such activities or excursions which are not run, supervised or controlled in any way by us. Your contract will be with the local activity supplier and we accept no responsibility for their actions or omissions.

Spending Money

Holiday Budgeting

When budgeting for your holiday, you will need to consider drinks, any meals not included in the holiday price, non-included entrance fees, optional excursions you may choose to participate in locally and any souvenirs or additional services such as laundry. A general guideline for lunches and drinks is £10-£20 per person per day.

Tipping

Although entirely at your own discretion, tipping is an important aspect of tourism and hospitality life and expectations are fairly high. In order to simplify tipping, we strongly recommend that you allow your leader to take care of making sure tips are given to hotel and restaurant staff and to local guides and drivers. This will be done using some funds provided by us together with, if you wish, a contribution from you, which he/she will collect during the holiday.

Tour Leaders & Local Guides

Tour Leaders

Your tour leader makes the world of difference to your holiday and ours are as passionate about discovering the world on foot as you are. They're resourceful, organised and widely travelled. They will handle all the local administration and other needs that might arise to ensure that you don't have to worry about planning your days and you can enjoy your holiday. Although leading group holidays, they won't forget that every group is made up of individuals. Each tour leader has their own individual style, talents and professional backgrounds and all are trained, qualified, experienced and dedicated to making your holiday as enjoyable, interesting and inspiring as possible.

Leader's Evening Briefing

Each evening, your tour leader will discuss with you the programme for the following day. This will be your opportunity to discuss the details and ensure the planned activities suit your walking ability. If you have concerns on clothing or equipment, this can be discussed then also. If you do not wish to join the organised group programme, please let the leader know.

Your Travel Details

This holiday can be booked as a flight inclusive package or land only if you wish to arrange your own flights and transfers. We can offer flights from Stansted, Luton, Gatwick and Manchester to Belfast International Airport. 

Belfast City Airport is the next closest to Ballycastle (58 miles) should you wish to book your own flights from other airports. 

All transport is included in the cost of the holiday. On the day of transfer between the two centres we will retrun to Belfast International Airport and transfer down to Newcastle from here.

We will provide one transfer on the arrival and departure days to and from Belfast International Airport. Our holidays can be booked to include flights from Stansted, Luton, Gatwick or Manchester. The transfer will take all passengers from all flights, so there may be some waiting around at the airport for all of the arrivals into Belfast International Airport. On the return flight, all passengers will take a transfer and due to varying flight times, there may be some delay at the airport before your flight. The flights have been chosen to prevent delay as much as possible. Please see our FAQs section for more information. FAQs | Ramblers Walking Holidays (ramblersholidays.co.uk)

Route planning to and from UK regional airports: the AA and RAC both offer free and detailed on-line route planning facilities on their websites which may help you find our hotels. Details can be found at: www.theaa.co.uk and www.rac.co.uk

Personal Details Check

To ensure that we can accurately administer your holiday arrangements, please confirm that the personal details we hold for you are up to date and that you have provided the information we need to secure your holiday travel and accommodation arrangements. Please check your passport details, date of birth and any other important details necessary for us to properly manage your holiday booking. You can view and update information already provided, and add details not yet asked for, by using the Manage My Booking facility on our website www.ramblersholidays.co.uk, or by calling our Sales and Reservations team on +44 (0)1707 331133. When you receive your booking confirmation please check the details as soon as possible.

Entry Requirements

Passport Information for United Kingdom

Any non UK or EU citizens may be subject to passport, identity card or visa requirements to enter the United Kingdom.

Meals

Accommodation is on a half board basis, with breakfasts and dinners taken in the hotels. 

In Ballycastle dinners are taken in the Marine Hotel's restaurant, Marconi's Bar & Bistro which overlooks Ballycastle sea front. 

The Burrendale Hotel has an excellent reputation for food. It has held the “The Taste of Ulster Award” since 2012 and is justly proud.

Lunches can be purchased from the hotels or locally and are not included in the holiday charge. 

Footwear & Kit List

Footwear

Lightweight waterproof walking boots with a good moulded sole (such as Vibram or similar) and a deep tread and which provide ankle support are strongly recommended and may be essential for some walks. 

General Kit List

Outdoor activities are always safer and more enjoyable if you are prepared.

If you have not travelled with us before the following list might be of use:

  • Waterproof jacket (Goretex or similar) and trousers
  • Lightweight quick-drying trousers
  • Walking T-shirt/shirts
  • Walking socks
  • Fleece or jumper
  • Sun hat, sunglasses, lip salve and sun block
  • Warm hat and gloves (if appropriate)
  • Swimwear (if appropriate)
  • Day sack (this should be able to carry all you would need for the day's activity)
  • Day sack liner
  • Water bottle - at least 1 litre capacity (more than 1 bottle may be required)
  • Basic first aid kit
  • Lunchbox
  • Walking poles (should you find them useful)
  • Sit mat

This list is not exhaustive and every walker is different and may have their own preference.

Travel Documents Checklist

Documents and Information to take with you:

  • Holiday money
  • Credit or debit cards (and separate details of who to call if lost)
  • Car parking ticket and car park directions (if prebooked)
  • Coach or rail travel tickets (if prebooked)
  • Holiday booking confirmation document
  • Travel insurance details (if applicable)
  • Details of any medical condition or allergy your holiday leader should know about

Water To Go

An alternative to bottled water from single-use sealed water bottles is filtered water from a refillable bottle containing its own water filter such as a Water-to-go bottle available from www.watertogo.eu. Just fill up from any water source and save the environment from disposable plastic bottles.

We have negotiated an exclusive 15% discount with our partners Water-to-Go for you as a thank you for helping the environment. Please go to their website at www.watertogo.eu and enter the code RWH17 when ordering. In addition, Water-to-Go will match the discount with a donation to our charity, Heart & Sole, which will allow us to continue to make a difference in the countries you visit on our holidays.

Maps, Guidebooks & Other Information

The Map Shop

If you cannot find the maps or books locally we recommend:

The Map Shop
5 High Street
Upton upon Severn, Worcs
WR8 0HJ
England

Tel: 01684 593 146
Website: www.themapshop.co.uk
E-mail: themapshop@btinternet.com

If you key many of the local places mentioned in this holiday fact sheet into YouTube, you will find a vast array of spectacular footage of the area.

Weather

Visit the following websites for an idea of the climate in your destination:

Staying Healthy On Holiday

Health requirements can change at any time. It is your own responsibility to ensure that you inform yourself from a professionally qualified source on, and comply with, such requirements at least 6 to 8 weeks before departure. Advice on vaccinations is available from your GP.

Health Advice for United Kingdom

No compulsory immunisations are required for holidays in the UK although you should be up to date with the usual immunisations recommended for life in Britain. Tetanus immunisation is recommended.

Further Travel Advice

For further advice please visit:

You might wish to take a small bottle of antibacterial hand gel with you for times when you're unable to wash your hands.

Travel Insurance

Although not compulsory for British and EU citizens resident in the UK, we strongly recommend that you take out travel insurance to cover you in the event of eventualities such as unexpected cancellation, accident or illness before your holiday or the loss of personal possessions.

Visitors who are not British Citizens (or who are not EU citizens resident in the UK), must be adequately insured to join our holidays and will be unable to participate in our local walking and other activity programmes without being able to demonstrate that you have valid travel insurance.

Personal Safety

The UK Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office provides up to date information on security and local laws for travellers, together with current passport and visa information, at www.gov.uk/travelaware. Please take a few minutes to look at the current advice on your planned destination.

Please be aware of what's going on around you, take sensible precautions with your credit cards and passport and avoid displays of wealth such as wearing expensive jewellery or watches. Do not carry more cash on you than you will need for each day, and we recommend that a money belt is used.

Cultural Awareness

Responsible Travel

We're committed to ethical tourism in all our destinations. Our holidays are designed for you to discover the essence of the country you are visiting. Travelling in small groups not only gives you an up close and personal experience of your destination, but minimises your impact on the immediate environment. We feel that the most important starting point to protect the environment is to be out in it. For more details visit our website.

The Ramblers Holidays Charitable Trust

Unlike many tour operators we have our own trust through which RWH Travel’s profits are channelled back into a variety of outdoor, walking-related or environmental conservation projects in the UK. The focus of the Trust’s financial support is Britain’s leading walking charity, The Ramblers, and their role in promoting the benefits and importance of walking to the British public. In addition the Trust welcomes applications for small grants from local organisations in the UK who need support for walking-orientated activities. This includes the establishment of footpaths and bridleways, funding for rebuilding bridges and renovating huts, as well as bursary funding for the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award for children who could not otherwise afford to do it. Please visit the ‘About Us’ section of our website and click on the Charitable Trust link for more details.

Heart and Sole

We appreciate that we are in a fortunate position to be able to use our profits to help make a difference to people's lives. Heart & Sole is a venture managed by our office staff, whose aim is to reach the heart of the communities in the countries we visit. Through Heart & Sole, we hope to make more of a long term, direct impact to these communities, particularly in less developed countries where even a small amount goes a long way. See our website for more information and details of some of the projects we support.

Staying In Touch

Mobile Phones

Please do provide us with a mobile phone contact number. We will only use this to contact you with important information relating to your holiday arrangements. 

Do keep your mobile phones switched on and readily available when travelling to the airport or if delayed in transit so that we can contact you with any last minute information relating to your travel arrangements.  

As a matter of courtesy, please switch off your mobile phone during walks, or endeavour to minimise its use. Please also try to minimise the use of mobile devices during group meals.

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