Sunday, 26 October 2014

Carlingford and Silent Valley (Mourne Mountains)

A couple of weeks ago it was my son's birthday. To "properly" celebrate the date, we decided to go away for the weekend, to a corner of Ireland we had not visited before: Carlingford and Silent Valley (Mourne Mountains) - and we loved what we saw!

Since we came to Ireland I had only heard good things about the town of Carlingford (Co. Louth), half way between Dublin and Belfast: everybody who's visited has fallen in love with it, but as strange as it may sound, we had not had the chance to go there yet.

It was the first stop in our weekend trip... and, of course, WE LOVED IT.

Getting into the heart of Carlingford is like being transported to the heart of a fairytale :-). The narrow streets full of mediaeval charm, with cute little shops, cafes and restaurants... really a pleasure to take a quiet stroll to see every corner it had to offer.

The town is nice, and the views of Carlingford Lough and the Mourne Mountains are just amazing! We were lucky enough to have a sunny afternoon and took a couple of pictures before we continued our trip up North

Beautiful, isn't it?

We were going to spend the night in the heart of the Mourne Mountains in a little village called Attical, very close to the Silent Valley Reservoir, only a few miles from Kilkeel

The place where we stayed is called the Mourne Lodge, and I would strongly recommend it if you are looking for a clean, quiet and  friendly hostel type of place to spend the night - no luxuries, but good atmosphere and a perfect location.

We had a family room - 2 bunk beds ensuite (sorry it is not very tidy...I just took the pic right before rushing down for breakfast!):

Our evening was quiet: prepared some pizzas in the lodge's kitchen and then had coffee/tea with a huge birthday pandoro (what the birthday boy chose, instead of proper cake!)

Then a little post dinner conversation in the living room and off to bed.

We woke up in the morning with the nice surprise of a lovely breakfast prepared by the owner :-)

Then, when our stomachs decided they could not take any more food, we packed our things and drove to the amazing Silent Valley Reservoir, which supplies water for county Down, surrounding counties and most of Belfast as well.

The beauty of the place is just amazing: you can breathe and quiet from the moment you enter the park (and ONLY until that moment, because the kids started shouting with excitement when we got there and did not stop until we left :-))

As you know I'm a lousy photographer (to say the least), but I could not stop taking pics of everything, from the entrance (even the car park!)

to the pond, the playground..... 

And of course..of the water - what a view! A must-see if you're in the area and you're a nature lover. From this point, it would have been lovely to take a walk and eat some sandwiches somewhere around there, but we had to go back to Dublin as  our visitors were flying back to Madrid that evening.

We'll be back to this wonderful place! that is a promise :-) 


  1. Somewhere I've always wanted to visit, and I really want to after seeing your photos!

  2. Simply...AWESOME. Ireland is blessed with beauty!