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Recreation in Castlewellan Forest Park

Located in a dramatic setting of mountains and sea, Castlewellan Forest Park is home to one of the most outstanding tree and shrub collections in Europe. The beauty, vigour, and perfect shape of the trees in the National Arboretum attract tree enthusiasts from around the world.

The planting of the walled Annesley garden, the focus of the arboretum, began in the 1850s and rare Conifers and Maples were later imported directly from Japan. The addition of more rich varieties, including Chilean Eucryphias, Australian Athrotaxis and Pittosporum and Chinese Rhododendrons has resulted in the arboretum holding many trees with record heights.

The garden is a mixture of informal and formal design with terraces, fountains, ornamental gates and flower borders. To walk around the forest park's mile-long lake, encountering some intriguing modern sculptures on the way, is to enjoy a great experience of eighteenth-century landscaping.

Castlewellan Forest Park offers a great day out for visitors of all ages,  whether you are a keen walker, a nature lover or simply looking to just embrace the great outdoors, it includes:

Opening Times

Castlewellan Forest Park and Peace Maze

  • Open every day except Christmas Day.
  • April and September: 9am to 8pm
  • May to August: 9am to 9pm
  • March and October: 9am to 6pm
  • November to February: 9am to 5pm

Castlewellan Caravan and Camping Site 2024

Operating times are as follows:

  • March: Thursday 14 to Monday 18 / Friday 22 & Saturday 23
  • March to September: Daily from Thursday 28 March until Sunday 1 September.
  • Check in: from 2pm. Check out: strictly before 1pm.

Please note: due to ongoing redevelopment works at the Forest Park, the Dovecote Yard pitches will not be available throughout 2024. Bookings in the main site will also only initially be available up to 1st September. Operating times for September and October may be affected by the redevelopment works and are therefore under review. Any updates to availability from 1 September will be notified via the Visit Mourne Facebook page with a minimum of one week’s advance notice.

Vehicle Parking Admission Charges

From Monday 22 April 2024, there is a new car parking permit and charging system at our four main parks Slieve Gullion Forest Park, Kilbroney Park, Castlewellan Forest Park and Delamont Country Park.
FREE entry into one park of choice with a ‘single-park permit’ is available to each registered household address within the Newry, Mourne and Down District Council area.
Access to the park on foot or by bicycle is free. Click here for more details.

Caravan and Camping Bookings

Castlewellan Forest Park on-line booking system will re-open on Tuesday 23rd January 2024 at 10am. Please note that bookings are online only.

  • Hard-standing pitch with electric  £30.80
  • Grassed tent pitch (no electric)  £24.50

Click here to Book Online 

Click here to find out more information on our Caravan and Camping Sites to include Pitch Information, Opening Times, Cost, Booking Cancellations and Amendments. 

Queries can be emailed to castlewellanpark@nmandd.org. Please allow up to five working days for a response.

Additional Information

Contact Details

Email: castlewellanpark@nmandd.org