Three Monkeys Online

A Curious, Alternative Magazine

Carlingford Lough

From the TMO A Dundalk travel guide

Carlingford Lough is a glacial fjord which forms part of the border between the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland (United Kingdom), with county Down on its northern shore and County Louth on its southern shore. It’s easily reachable from Dundalk, and is one of Ireland’s most beautiful natural spots, flanked by the Mountains of Mourne which famously sweep down to the sea and the Cooley peninsula.

Where to stay, visiting Carlingford Lough

People have been flocking to Carlingford Lough for centuries, and the pretty towns that dot its shores, including Warrenpoint, Rosstrevor, Carlingford, and Greenore. If you really want to soak in the natural wonder, you’d be advised to stay in one of the area’s numerous fine B&B’s for example Templetown House, Peggy’s Shabby Chic Cottage, or The Oystercatcher Lodge Guest House

Alternatively, you can stay in nearby Dundalk which has a range of decently priced hotels including The Crowne Plaza, The Carrickdale Hotel and Spa, or the wonderful Ballymascanlon House Hotel outside of the town, on the way to the Lough.

what to see in and around Carlingford Lough

Sail across the lough on the Carlingford scenic ferry, which connects Greenore port and Greencastle in County Down. This is a great way to take in the spectacular views of this very special Lough (Ireland has only three glacial fjords, and Carlingford is arguably the most beautiful). Details can be found at

Take a scenic drive along the Cooley peninsula, viewing the lough and historic spots that mark out the terrritory of the Táin Bó Cúailgne, one of Ireland’s most famous epic poems, known in English as ‘The Cattle Raid of Cooley’ with its famous Ulster hero Cú_Chulainn. The Cooley Peninsula drive is one of the best scenic drives in Ireland, which is saying something!

Hike to the Cloughmore stone from Rostrevor, on the Northern Shore of Carlingford Lough, for wonderful views. The Cloughmore National Nature Reserve, just outside Rostrevor is a wooded area that has three marked trails leading up to the Cloughmore stone, a huge granite boulder ( An Chloch Mhór in Irish means Big Stone). It sits on the slopes of Slieve Martin, overlooking Rostrevor Forest, Carlingford Lough and the Cooley Peninsula. According to legend Finn MacCool hurled the boulder from the Cooley mountains on the other side of the lough.