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Viewpoints in the mountains and hills by car

Viewpoints in the mountains and hills by car

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Posted Mon 5 Aug 2019 11:59 AM
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Hello,
Where are the most beautfiful viewing points at surrounding hills/mountains where you can get a bit closer to the tops (or at least out of the valleys) by car? I am going to the northern part of Ireland and Northern Ireland (above the line Galway-Dublin). 

So I am looking for high vantagepoints in/next to mountain area's (like connemara, twelve bens, bluestack, mourne mountains, comeragh, maumturks, glenveagh etc.) higher than the valleys, reachable by car. 
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Posted Mon 5 Aug 2019 1:57 PM
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Hi Theo,
if you are driving along the North Coast, you should stop here - 
https://www.google.co.uk/maps/place/Gortmore/@55.1501194,-6.8705094,1219m/data=!3m1!1e3!4m5!3m4!1s0x4860184c61845e5f:0x4d724706636f5189!8m2!3d55.1492848!4d-6.8774012?hl=en-GB
Fantastic views, if the weather is good and you can get to it with your car.

Enjoy your trip and let us know how you get on.
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Posted Mon 5 Aug 2019 8:26 PM
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Thank you very much!

are there also mountain area's, for instance the mourne mountains, connemara, glenveigh, blue stack, 12 bens, comeragh or maumturks that have somewhat higher vantagepoints or scenic routes that are reachable by car, higher than the valleys?
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Posted Tue 6 Aug 2019 8:56 AM
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Hi Theo,

The majority of locations you mentioned and many others are all reachable by car, with a little hike or two at the end to get all the way to the highest point!

Glenveagh National Park as well as having a lovely Castle, is somewhere that has several walks from the grounds into the hills surrounding it. The Mourne Mountains in County Down and Diamond Hill in Connemara are also places that will be reachable by car and then a super hike up for some stunning views.

We hope that you make all of your planned locations as you travel and we look forward to seeing your photos from the top!

Speak soon,

Martin
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Posted Wed 7 Aug 2019 10:07 AM
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Hi Theo,
If you are staying in Belfast, another suggestion would be - 
https://www.google.co.uk/maps/place/Cave+Hill+Country+Park/@54.6497451,-5.9502043,2575m/data=!3m1!1e3!4m5!3m4!1s0x486108f7d8e1232b:0xeea0bf0ffe08a47!8m2!3d54.6497456!4d-5.9502044?hl=en-GB
On a good day, you have lovely views over Belfast and surrounding areas.


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Posted Thu 8 Aug 2019 12:54 PM
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Hi Theo, for the Mourne Mountains I would recommend you head for Spelga Dam which is reachable by road and has a picnic site and toilets. Although you won't be on the top of a moutain, you will be reasonable high up in the Mournes and the views of the mountains and sea below are lovely. You can reach it from Hilltown or Bryansford villages and then head down towards the coast on the B27 (Kilkeel, Annalong, Newcastle). 

I would also recommend visiting the Glens of Antrim, if you go on the A23 towards Waterfoot (perhaps stopping into Glengarriff Forest Park), you will see the valley laid out in front of you.

If you will be in Donegal, you can drive to the top of Malin Head on Inishowen Peninsula.

Have a lovely trip!

Gillian

Gillian Hunt
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Ulster Historical Foundation
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Posted Fri 9 Aug 2019 1:39 PM
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Thanks for the suggestions!

@ Martin: Do you know any good viewpoints in those regions reachable by car or a small hike?
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Posted Fri 9 Aug 2019 7:51 PM
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Hi Theo,

I do hope that you don't mind if I jump in as well! 

It looks like there are some truly wonderful suggestions made so far, and I'd probably suggest the Mourne Mountains myself. In fact, believe the Spelga Dam was mentioned above, which is just a short drive from Silent Valley, another spot within the Mourne Mountains that you might like.

If you are stopping by Glengarriff Forest Park, it might be worth a trip to see Mount Errigal, the tallest mountain in Ireland and a part of the Appalachian Trail

Lastly, I would be remiss if I didn't mention the Slieve League Cliffs! While they're a bit out of the way from other suggestions made so far, they're the tallest cliffs in all of Ireland. You can drive right up to the viewing area and look out over the ocean, or see the cliffs melt away into valleys. 

Do you mind terribly if I ask if anything has struck your interest so far, or if there are any spots you'd like to learn a bit more about? We'd all be more than happy to touch on anywhere that you're not quite sure about yet and answer any questions that you might have.

I'm looking forward to hearing back from you.

Kindest regards,

~Rochelle
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Posted Fri 9 Aug 2019 10:11 PM
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Hi Rochelle,

Thank you so much for your suggestions as well!

I did find some area's of great interest, especially the Mourne Mountains, Twelve Bens, Maumturks, Glenveagh and Slieve League seem like wonderful mountain area's! 

We plan on hiking in the Mourne Mountains and doing the Diamond Hill Loop walk, but we won't be able to take hikes like those every day, so I am still interested in finding places where you can get by car and maybe a small hike but still offering wonderful mountain views. Slieve League is indeed one of those! 

Especially the mountain area's of connemara I find hard to explore online. Because at the mourne mountains for instance, I can find a lot of trails and views with google maps, street view and those dots on the map that show 360 degrees photos of that specific place (sphere). But that's harder to do at the Connemara area, but I do see so many great photographs from that area that sparks my interest. 
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Posted Sat 10 Aug 2019 10:16 AM
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.Hi Theo, 

I think I can help a little here. Firstly there was an initiative set up to promote the splendour of Connemara called Goconnemara, they put together a brochure of mountain trails, now referred to as the Connemara loop. It is made up of 2 walks. A 4 hour, which may be a bit much for you and a 1 hour 30mins. The shorter one finishes with exactly the kind of views you are looking for, while the longer one runs closer to roads so it is possible to join it a little later and still get the reward without the hike. They put together a downloadable brochure with maps and descriptions, to make things easier too.
Check out the Mountain Walk Brochure here

There are similar guides from WalkNI for the mournes too, although there is always going to be a bit of a climb involved with the Mournes.
Here is a link to the Meelmore and Meelbeg walk. This is one of my favourites, It is not excessively long but it can be a bit taxing in places. Have a look around the rest of WalkNI though. they have some great walks for all over Northern Ireland.

As a footnote,
Christoph posted a link to Cavehill. I am up Cavehill nearly every week as it is on my doorstep. The best way to do this is to visit Belfast Castle, leave the car in the car park and take one of the paths heading up the hill, just follow the dog walkers. You will be at the top, looking over the city in about 20 mins. Also, Rochelle mentioned Silent Valley.  If you are looking for stunning pictures to take home. some of the best I have taken of Irish countryside comes from there, in the right light (around dusk) silent valley looks like something out of a fairytale.

Anyway, I have given you some food for thought. 
If you are looking at anywhere else let me know, chances are I have walked it already
Regards,
Gordee


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