North of Ireland hiking tour – Day 2

Leave Belfast and drive (1hr 15mins, 51miles) to the Mountains of Mourne

Hike Slieve Binnian North Tor and Summit Tor

Today we leave Belfast and drive south towards the Mourne Mountains, home of the highest peaks in Northern Ireland and an area of outstanding natural beauty!

These mountains are composed of tough acidic granite that are quite young geologically speaking. The recent ice ages have sculpted and carved the mountains into the shape they are today. Large areas of open moorland and pockets of bog are scattered far and wide. This rugged landscape was once home to dense native forest but thousands of years of deforestation and agriculture has created the open heather moorland with areas of non-native conifers planted throughout

Our hike today takes us up Slieve Binnian, Northern Ireland’s 3rd highest peak. The trail takes us up to the North Tor route to the impressive towers of granite rock. The hiker is rewarded with views of the Irish Sea along with views of the Silent Valley and Ben Crom reservoirs, with both constructed in the 1900s. These reservoirs provide much of the water for the people of counties Down, Armagh and Belfast.

After the hike we drive back to Belfast. Dinner included in Belfast.

Hike: takes 4-6hrs, Length 6 miles, Elevation gain 1900ft, Route type Circular, Walking on gravel trail and open moorland that can be wet and boggy at times. Total driving time 2hrs 30mins.