CountyDownMAHEEISLANDNendrumMonastery(tourismnorthernireland©NITB)3 ©TourismNorthernIreland

Nendrum Monastic Site

The best example in Northern Ireland of a pre Norman monastic enclosure.

Mahee Island, County Down

Opening times

Access to the site is available all year round.
The Visitor Centre open seasonally between July and September; Friday, Saturday and Sundays 10am to 5pm (last admission 4.30pm).

Address

Nendrum Monastic Site
Mahee Island
County Down
BT23 6EP

Nendrum is thought to have been set up by St Machaoi in the 5th century but also has links to St Patrick.

The monastery consists of three round dry stone walled enclosures, one within the other. There is evidence of industrial works in the outer enclosure; a central enclosure with a church ruin and sundial, the remains of a round tower and a graveyard. The middle enclosure has the remains of huts and workshops. It is thought to be the best example of a pre Norman monastic site in Northern Ireland.

To reach the island, follow signs from Comber, and keep going. Have faith, as the causeways from the mainland to Reagh Island, and from there to Mahee Island, can apparently be crossed even at high tide (although we recommend checking and planning around the tide times). There is a Visitor Centre which houses interactive and graphic displays, models, artefacts and videos.

  • Captivating architecture

  • Enchanting atmosphere

  • National heritage here

  • Social heritage stories

  • Car park at church

  • Church shop or souvenirs

  • Dog friendly

  • Space to secure your bike

  • Steps to enter the church or churchyard

  • Walkers & cyclists welcome

  • Scheduled Ancient Monument (ruin)

Contact information

Other nearby churches

Grey Abbey

Greyabbey, County Down

Along with Inch Abbey, Greyabbey is the best example of Anglo-Norman Cistercian architecture in Ulster and was the daughter house of Holm Cultram in Cumbria.