Dundalk serves as a logistics hub and is easily accessible by road, sea, air and rail. The town is served by the M1 Dublin-Belfast motorway and is well-served by bus and rail on the Northern line intercity and commuter services. Dublin Airport is just a 40 minute drive from Dundalk and both Belfast International Airport and George Best Belfast City Airport are just over an hour’s drive away. Both cities’ ports an also be reached within 90 minutes.
A number of international airlines operate regular flights to Dublin and Belfast. Dundalk is less than an hour’s drive from Dublin Airport and Belfast International Airport while Belfast City Airport is just over and hour’s drive. All airports provide flights all over Ireland, the UK, Europe and worldwide.
The Dundalk area has unique access to a wide variety of ports with state-of-the-art cargo handling and storage facilities readily available including Ro-Ro, container services/Lo-Lo, liquid, dry and break-bulk services. The area provides direct access to the main shipping routes to Europe and the UK and there are frequent scheduled shipments from the region to the UK (Stranraer, Lancashire, Holyhead, Liverpool), and the rest of Europe (Rotterdam, Zeebrugge, Radicatel, Le Harve) and Scandanivia. There are 6 ports within the region:
Dundalk Port (bulk cargo) is the fastest growing port in Ireland. The main cargo imports are plasterboard, feedstuff, oil, coal, timber and steel. Exports are scrap metal and turf.
Drogheda Port ((bulk cargo and LO/LO) is one of Ireland’s premier multi modal ports with current annual cargo throughputs of over one million tonnes. A wide range of commodities including paper, containers, LPG, petroleum, grains, timber and steel are handled. On average 700 vessels (max 6,000 dwt) visit the port each year, trading mainly to continental Europe, the Baltic’s and Scandinavia. See http://www.droghedaport.ie
Greenore (a deep sea port with LO/LO facilities) is the only privately owned port in Southern Ireland. It has three berths and can handle vessels of up to 39,999 gross tons. In 2005 Greenore was Ireland’s 10th port with 649,000 tonnes of goods handled.
Warrenpoint (Ro/Ro) in County Down has the largest market share of the island’s paper imports. In excess of 90% of the paper used for printing newspapers North and South of Ireland is imported through Warrenpoint Port. It also handles timber, which is regularly imported from Scandinavia, Canada and the Soviet Union and block stone from the continent. The port has a scheduled Ro/Ro Service with daily services to Heysham on the Lancashire Coast in the UK. The port also has a diverse range or scheduled services to continental Europe with a twice weekly container service to Rotterdam, a weekly container and general cargo service to Norway, Sweden and Denmark and regular sailings to the Baltic. See http://www.warrenpointharbour.co.uk
Dublin Port (Ro/Ro) Ireland’s largest port is nestled in the heart of the capital city. Dublin Port handles over two-thirds of containerised trade to and from Ireland and 50% of all Ireland’s imports and exports. Dublin Port also handles over 1.3 million tourists through the ferry companies operating at the port and through the cruise vessels calling to the port. See http://www.dublinport.ie
Belfast Port is Northern Ireland’s principal maritime gateway, serving the Northern Ireland economy and increasingly that of the Republic of Ireland. About 60% of Northern Ireland’s seaborne trade and 20% of the entire island’s is handled by the Port which receives over 6000 vessels each year. With 1.2 million passengers and half a million freight units annually, Belfast is Ireland’s busiest ferry port. It is also the island’s leading dry bulk port, dominating the market with regard to imports of grain and animal feeds, coal, fertilisers and cement, and exports of scrap and aggregates. See http://www.belfast-harbour.co.uk
Dundalk is a hub of activity for Ireland’s freight industry with a wide selection of road hauliers operating in the area. For more details see the Irish Road Haulage Association website at http://www.irha.ie
From Dublin: Take the M1 Motorway (northbound). Pass through the toll bridge at Drogheda heading north. Take exit sign-posted Dundalk South.
From Belfast: Take the M1 / A1Motorway southbound towards Newry. On entering Newry take the A1 (Newry Bypass) and then continue forward onto the M1 and exit at junction sign-posted Dundalk North, R173, Carlingford/Greenore.
Iarnród Éireann has services to and from Dundalk Station on the Belfast – Dublin Northern Line. See http://www.iarnrodeireann.ie for detailed timetables.