Drive the spectacular Causeway Coastal Route
The Causeway Coastal Route covers eighty miles of coastline across two counties, beginning in Belfast in the south-east of Antrim and ending in the Walled City in County Londonderry, in the north-west.
Along the way, there are fishing villages, quiet beaches, mountains and landscapes which poets and artists have celebrated in words and colour. Compare your visits to Carrickfergus and Cushendun with Louis MacNeice’s poems of the same names.
The route is easy to follow and the highlights include Giant’s Causeway, Carrick-a-rede Rope Bridge, Dunluce Castle, Glenariff Forest Park, White Rocks Beach and Londonderry. These places always bring thrills and memorable experiences but don’t just stay on the route. There are seven scenic and interesting loops to make off the path which take in areas of outstanding natural beauty: Torr Head, Slemish Mountain, Rathlin Island, Benone Beach, Cushendun and Binevenagh Mountain with remarkable views will inspire great memories.
Giant’s Causeway, Co. Antrim
The Giant’s Causeway is proof that Mother Nature provides the most dramatic tourist attractions. The natural wonder is comprised of around 40,000 polygonal basalt rock columns, formed by the ancient volcanic landscape and stretching along the coastline like a series of gigantic stepping stones. A Giants Causeway Day Trip from Belfast is one of the country’s most popular excursions, with visitors taking the unique opportunity to walk one of nature’s most peculiar pathways.
Dunluce Castle is located dramatically close to a headland that plunges straight into the sea, along the North Antrim coast, and was the headquarters of the MacDonnell Clan. There is archaeological evidence of a village that surrounded the castle which was destroyed by fire in 1641. The site was also witness to the sinking of a colony ship that broke up on the rocks off Islay in 1857 with the loss of 240 lives.
Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge
Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge, Co. Antrim. It is a famous rope bridge near Ballintoy. The bridge links the mainland to the tiny island of Carrickarede. It spans 20 metres (66 ft) and is 30 metres (98 ft) above the rocks below. The bridge is mainly a tourist attraction and is owned and maintained by the National Trust. In 2009 it had 247,000 visitors. The bridge is open all year round (subject to weather) and people may cross it for a fee.
Explore Game of Thrones Territory
You don’t have to travel far to see why HBO chose Northern Ireland as the perfect place to film Game of Thrones®. From authentic medieval buildings, to beautiful landscapes and far-reaching views, Northern Ireland is the picture perfect filming location. In Part 1 of our Game of Thrones Filming Locations series we look at some of the best spots to visit along the Causeway Coast and Glens and further inland to Lough Neagh and its Waterways to bring your Westeros journey to life. Warning: contains spoilers!
Northern Ireland Golf
Founded in 1888, the legendary Royal Portrush Golf Club has two Championship Courses – the renowned Dunluce Course and the smaller but equally enjoyable Valley Course. Both command impressive views across the North Atlantic with breathtaking views of Scotland and Donegal but the golf is even more spectacular.
Bushmills Irish Whiskey is made at Ireland’s oldest working distillery in County Antrim, Northern Ireland on the beautiful North Coast. Our original grant to distil was signed in 1608 by King James 1st and there has been distillation on this site since then, using the unique water from our own stream and Irish barley. The Bushmills Brand Experience encompasses guided tours around a working distillery with all the associated sights and smells, tutored whiskey tastings, a specialist whiskey shop and a well stocked gift shop with exclusive Bushmills merchandise. At the conclusion of your tour you will be offered a whiskey or a soft drink in our 1608 Bar. There is also a restaurant serving lunches and Bushmills inspired treats throughout the day. The Distillery Tour Centre is open 7 days a week.
Originally opened in 1902, the path has been restored and is now enjoyed by visitors from across the world who come to experience the dramatic scenery that awaits them along this stretch of coastline. Weaving its way along the basalt cliffs of the famous Causeway Coast, you will walk suspension bridges, through a tunnel and along pathways and see the ever-changing flora and fauna along the cliff face. Be amazed by the closeness of Scotland as you peer across the Irish Sea to the East. You will learn about the geology and biodiversity of the area, as well as its amazing history. Looking down to the sheltered waters, an abundance of wildlife is often visible and the suspension bridge provides an expansive viewing point over a nesting place for seabirds.
White Rocks Beach
The beach, situated just off the Causeway Coastal Route, enjoys a stunning natural coastal location, with the limestone cliffs of the White Rocks stretching from Curran Strand to Dunluce Castle. These soft, sedimentary rocks have been carved through centuries into a labyrinth of caves and arches. Shelagh’s Head, the Wishing Arch, Elephant Rock and the Lion’s Paw are headlands of distinguishable forms which rise out of the ocean. Under the road, there are cavernous caves, accessible only from the sea, home to seabirds and a hunting ground for hawks