Ireland is divided into Thirty two counties and the City of Newry is split between two of these, County Armagh and County Down. The City itself is situated in a valley from where the peaks of the Mourne, Cooley and south Armagh mountains can been seen.
The city has existed as a settlement for well over 850 years. When John De Courcy came to Ireland in the twelfth century he established significant bases at Newry,Carlingford, Carrickfergus and Coleraine all of which developed into towns and monasteries.
After the Irish war of Independence to drive the British out of Ireland(1919 – 1921), a truce was called and a treaty was signed which partitioned the Country, despite being a Nationalist Town Newry fell on the northern side of the border. As a result of partition Newry people because of their nationalist sympathies suffered greatly from mass unemployment and Discrimination inflicted on them by a Unionist lead government.
Newry is thankfully seeing better days, it is a major population centre almost equal distance between Belfast and Dublin, The Border partitioning the Country visibly is almost none existent, however economically it’s a different story. As a result of the crash of the Celtic tiger in the south, it’s more cost effective for Southern Shoppers to shop in the North leading to bad traffic congestion in Newry.
Newry is also a major transport hub, with convenient connections to the rest of the country.
Newry is a relatively small city, and can easily be explored on foot. Taxis are widely available and charge a minimum fee of £4.oo within the city. Local buses run from about 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. and really aren't worth the effort.
After Belfast, Newry is arguably Northern Ireland's second finest location for shopping. The town boasts two shopping centres (The Quays and The Buttercrane) as well as a modest out-of-town shopping complex. The Quays also has a 9 screen cinema, showing the latest blockbuster movies. Newry has a 25 metre swimming pool and a sports complex, both of which have seen better days. There are also facilities for playing soccer, bowls and tennis. Newry also has a number of public parks and is surrounded by beautiful towns, the majestic Mourne Mountains and spectacular countryside.and has loads of carry out spots
Finding lunch should not prove a problem, as there are many good sandwich shops located on Hill Street and in The Quays Shopping Centre (people who live in Ireland will know to avoid O'Brien's in the Buttercrane).
Finding somewhere to eat in the evenings can be a challenge. Excellent restaurants (such as the original Soho Place and Tickle) seem to have an abnormally short life-span, thankfully Copper Restaurant has moved from Warrenpoint to Monaghan Street and is THE place for food offering a locally sourced menu and a good vegetarian/vegan menu. Many places offer inexpensive and unremarkable fare, the most prominent being the Canal Court Hotel's bar snacks menu (best described as standard chain-pub food). There are a wide range of Chinese restaurants/takeaways and pizzerias, but remarkably few Indian restaurants. The number of pubs offering food has grown significantly in recent years.
Just one quick word of warning - food-wise, Newry is hardly a vegetarian's paradise. You have been warned.
For a city, Newry has a surprisingly small number of hotels. For those looking at the lower end of the scale, the Mourne Country Hotel often suffices, although the quality of services offered are continually degrading. More popular, not only with class and location, is the city's newest hotel - the Canal Court Hotel. This hotel offers a wide range of facilities, both for guests and conferences, and is currently encompassing a massive upgrade. Bed and Breakfasts are also in abundance throughout the city and its surrounding rural areas at decent rates.