Northern Ireland (Co. Antrim)

Whats Antrim? Well its the country at the very top of Ireland if looking at a map but most importantly its home to one of the most impressive natural wonders the Giants Causeway. To top it all off there is so much more, as if driving along the coastal road wouldn’t be enough there is also Dunluce Castle, Carrick-A-Rede Rope bridge, Bushmills and the Dark Hedges. I find Antrim so impressive that I’ve went up more than twice and would definitely go again as it just doesn’t get old!!! 20160619_174616

Bushmills

Now to me Bushmills is Whiskey, I was not aware that there is a town in Antrim called Bushmills. I know its obvious that the whiskey must have come from somewhere, I just didn’t realise it was in Antrim. Its a quiet little town with some lovely pubs, restaurants, b&b’s and obviously the Old Bushmills Distillery itself!!! You can go for a tour of the distillery for just 7.50 pounds per person, now that is a bargain compared to Jameson Distillery tour. Most Distillery tours are the same but I still find them interesting to visit and the taster at the end is also worth it.

Giants Causeway

The main attraction itself and the purpose of every trip I’ve taken up to Antrim. Once you pay your 8.50 pounds per adult at the visitor center you can walk around and get more information on the place within the center. Once you get your audio guide you can be on your way. There is a bus available that will drive you down to the giants causeway basalt stones, however if you can walk then DO. As you walk down the scenery just gets more and more impressive, between the cliffs and the through the windiest gap in Ireland you step out to the rocks themselves. 20160619_174635Formed due to volcanic eruptions or the giant Finn, which ever story you believe the stones are like nothing you have ever seen and much much bigger than I expected anyhow. If you think this is the end of the tour you are very wrong. As you continue to follow the path you can reach the Organ of Reostan, the Organ like rocks are massive and just as impressive from up close as afar. If you continue your adventure up to the top of the cliff following the path you get a stunning view of the coast as well as some sheep. The trip is at least a half day venture but can be stretched to a full day with a lovely meal in the hotel right beside the visitor center.

Dunluce Castle1656394_10151955450872513_2033110700_n

We actually accidentally stumbled on this medieval castle. Perhaps i should have done some research before our trip because I’m really glad we came across it. Located along the coastal road the castle is accessible to the public for 5 pounds per adult which allows you to walk around the grounds while guided tours are also available. The castle is in great condition as far as medieval castles go and the size is very impressive.

Carrick-a-Rede rope bridge

1794769_10151955470392513_861980680_nI will not lie, it disappointed me a little bit. I guess i was just expecting a proper old school rope bridge that’s just about holding on and i might plummet to my death at any moment. I guess if that was the case they wouldn’t have tourists visit, so perhaps my disappointment is more so a problem with my wild imagination. The one thing I will say is, expect a walk. You cant just drive up to the bridge itself so you need to walk a few Km to it but the walk is along the cliff tops so pretty scenic none the less. The experience of the bridge itself lasts about 2 mins, also depends on how many tourists there are.

Dark Hedges1796600_10151955467622513_580622271_n

Mystical and enticing!! Makes for a lovely picture too. Made famous by the t.v. show Game of Thrones this tree alley is pretty cool. Its also in the middle of nowhere and that its a road to a farm which is pretty much it. Drive up, stop, get out, take a picture and off you go. Don’t get me wrong I’m not disappointed with the trees but don’t get your hopes up if you think there is more to them then meets the eye.

All in all going to Antrim is definitely a weekend trip, between the time it would take you to drive between all the places you wont fit into one day especially if you want to properly enjoy all that Antrim has got to offer.

 

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