|Descent from Slieve Martin|
It’s great to get away on holidays, a chance to leave everything stressful behind, and just relax – whether relaxation for you means getting out on your bike to hit some trails, or enjoying the art at a local gallery. One thing that can stay, is the stress of money – especially if you’re taking the family away – a brood of children isn’t cheap! So I thought I would give some ideas on what I like to do with groups, whilst keeping the costs down!
First things first – pack a picnic! That doesn’t mean some soggy sambos and bruised fruit – why not take the opportunity to live like a local? I recommend getting some nice fresh bread – Warrenpoint has 2 great bakeries, O’Hares andThe Corn Dolly – My recommendation for O’Hares are the yummy crusty rolls, or the lodgers loaf. If going to The Corn Dolly – don’t forget to pick up some fantastic local traybakes… from rice krispie squares to fifteens – there is too much choice, so perhaps just ask for a mixture! Eurospar in Warrenpoint is a shop that never fails to surprise me with what they have in stock, and have a pretty good stock of fruit and vegetables too. Head around to John Magee’s Butcher on Church Street for your deli counter options.
|Picking Woodland Sorrel|
Kilbroney Park is a beautiful forest park with almost 100 acres of scenic parkland. Free entry and parking keeps the cost down. My favourite walk is to start at the Forestry Office (red building on right as you enter park), and follow the trail up through the Oak Forest to Fiddlers’ Green. From here, follow the steep path up to Clough Mor, (or The Big Stone), which both adults and children alike will enjoy climbing.
After a stop for some energy refuelling (a good time for the traybakes perhaps?!) follow the path that loops up and around the curve of the mountain towards Slieve Martin. The last part up the steep grass slopes is tough, but the views from the top are well worth it! If it isn’t too windy, take your lunch here, or perhaps head back down towards the shelter of the trees.
|View on path across to Slieve Martin|
Follow the path down the trees (or the zig zags as they’re known locally), then continue down the Forest Drive towards the bridge. From here you can take the river path back down to the playground at Kilbroney Park.
|River Trail Alongside Forest Drive|
During the winter we like to finish our day with a nice hot chocolate back at Rostrevor Holidays – topped with cream and marshmallows of course! Whilst during the summer it’s a trip into The Genoa at Warrenpoint for their unmissable home-made ice-cream.
|View across to Cranfield on Slieve Martin|