Tips & Advices

The Final Causeway Coastal Route Itinerary, Northern Ireland

The Causeway Coastal Route of Northern Ireland is among the best road trips on the planet. The 120-mile route from Belfast to Londonderry (Derry) might not be the longest drive on earth however what it lacks in miles it makes up for in spectacular locations to go to. So sit again and calm down as a result of we’re going to present you the entire greatest stops on the Causeway Coastal Route.

Having pushed the Causeway Coastal Route thrice, we now have seen the entire stops on this stunning Irish street journey. When you go to Northern Ireland, likelihood is you’ll drive no less than a portion of this well-known scenic route that snakes its manner across the Northern Coast.

Stops on the Causeway Coastal Route

Click here to get your Causeway Coastal Route Map and comply with alongside on Google maps.

The Causeway Coastal Route is 120 miles (km) lengthy and takes 3-5 days. It begins in Belfast and winds its manner counterclockwise by means of the Antrim Coast ending in Londonderry.

Make certain to take your time as there are such a lot of issues to see and do on the coast street. We recommend spending 3-5 days driving the Causeway Coastal Route. Trust me, you want time to benefit from the scenic views, mountaineering trails, and prime sights.

In 2018, the Causeway Coastal route was voted the Number 1 Region on the planet by Lonely Planet. We give that ThePlanetD seal of approval as effectively. Check out our metropolis guides on each Belfast and Londonderry to profit from your journey.

Causeway Coastal Route Itinerary

If you spend 2 days in Belfast and sooner or later in Derry, you might have the proper 5-day itinerary for Northern Ireland seeing all of its spectacular landscapes, Game of Thrones filming areas, and the 9 Glens of Antrim most of that are situated alongside the Causeway Coast.

The coastal causeway route really is the final word Northern Ireland street journey that highlights one of the best the nation has to supply. We are going to spotlight the entire greatest stops that can assist you select which of the highest sights you must see whereas creating your individual street journey itinerary.

If you might have restricted time however nonetheless need to go to the highest sights alongside the Causeway Coast, you can book this guided tour from Belfast. It’s a full-day tour to the Giant’s Causeway driving by means of County Antrim and the northern coast of Ireland. You’ll cease on the Dark Hedges, and the Carrick a Rede Rope Bridge for pictures. You’ll then go to the superb Basalt Columns of the star sights which is commonly described because the eighth Wonder of the world earlier than heading again to Belfast with a cease for pictures at Dunluce Castle.


Causeway Coastal Route Itinerary  Belfast

Located simply two hours north of Dublin, Belfast is only a hop skip and a leap from probably the most iconic stops on the Causeway Coast. The capital metropolis of Northern Ireland is a good place to make a base or to spend a few days exploring earlier than setting out in your Causeway Coast street journey.

We stayed on the Ten Square Hotel Belfast and may extremely suggest it. Located instantly throughout from Belfast City Hall, we liked this resort. We had been inside strolling distance of many sights and the rooms had been trendy and stylish.

causeway coastal route itinerary titanic belfast

There are so many issues to do in Belfast City. You can immerse within the historical past of its most well-known ship on the Titanic Belfast Museum, study of The Troubles of Northern Ireland as you tour Shankhill and Falls Roads, or take pleasure in a pint whereas listening to conventional music at certainly one of its many native pubs.

There’s one thing for everybody in Belfast. Even film buffs will love following the trail of the Game of Thrones within the Glass of Thrones or spying on stars at Titanic Studios. Book tickets in advance for Titanic Belfast that features entry to Ocean Exploration Centre and the SS Nomadic. See our full Belfast City Guide for extra data.

If you need to go to the Causeway Coast on a guided tour from Belfast this popular Game of Thrones Tour takes you to a number of stops on the coastal route the place you’ll take pleasure in the fantastic thing about the Antrim Coast earlier than hitting the world-famous Giant’s Causeway. During this guided day tour you’ll cease at locations like Carrickfergus Castle, and the 9 Glens of Antrim earlier than seeing the coastal city of Ballycastle. It’s then time to see HBO’s Game of Thrones filming areas like Magharmorne Quarry which is the placement of Castle Black and the Dark Hedges to see King’s Road.

Causeway Coastal Route Itinerary Belfast Castle

On our manner out of Belfast, we stopped at Belfast Castle for a last view overlooking town from its stunning citadel. It is a bit out of town middle, so we waited till we hit the street to see it and it was the proper begin to a visit across the Antrim Coast.

Located in Cavehill Country Park, Belfast citadel stands excessive above Belfast on a hill throughout the grounds of Cave Hill Country Park. It is free to enter and inside you’ll be able to tour its rooms and seize a chew to eat on the cafe. There are loads of strolling trails across the citadel and you may stroll all the best way to Cave Hill Country Park,

When you go to Ireland, a visit to Belfast is a should. If you might have a short while, you must book a Black Taxi Tour to see the murals of Belfast and the neighborhoods of  Falls and Shankill Road that had been the epicentre of The Troubles. And see how the Peace Wall is preserving the peace immediately.

Carrickfergus Castle

Causeway Coastal Route Itinerary Carrickfergus Castle

Carrickfergus Castle is situated on the Northern Shore of Belfast Lough. There are many castles to select from on the Causeway Coastal Route, and it is a good choice since it will likely be your first cease as soon as you allow Belfast. Carrickfergus Castle has been standing for greater than 800 years and is an instance of one of many greatest preserved medieval buildings in Ireland.

It’s stunning it’s nonetheless standing because it has stood invasions from the English, French, and Scottish armies. It additionally performed a strategic function in World War II. This citadel is so picturesque that it’s a fashionable marriage ceremony venue.

  • Address: Marine Hwy, Carrickfergus BT38 7BG, UK

The Gobbins Cliff Walk

Causeway Coastal Route Itinerary Gobbins Cliff Walk

The subsequent cease on our Causeway Coastal Route is the Gobbins Cliffwalk. Adrenaline junkies will love following The Gobbins Cliff Path which is a community of walkways and bridges that hugs a dramatic basalt cliff. Take within the extraordinary views of the Irish sea as you cross bridges and enter sunken caves as you cling to sheer cliff faces.

  • Address: The Gobbins Visitor Centre, 68 Middle Road, Islandmagee, County Antrim, BT40 3SL

Slemish mountain

A slight detour off the principle Causeway Coastal Route will take you to an imposing mountain the place legend has it that Saint Patrick Tended Sheep. Located in County Antrim, Slemish Mountain is the place Saint Patrick himself spent 6 years working as a shepherd after his seize.

If you occur to be visiting the Antrim Coast on Saint Patrick’s Day, you’ll be able to be a part of a pilgrimage up the mountain the place it’s mentioned that St. Patrick turned to prayer giving him the braveness to flee. Even should you aren’t there on Saint Patrick’s Day, a hike to the highest presents stunning views of the Antrim Coast.

Glenarm Castle

Causeway Coastal Route Itinerary Glenarm Castle

You can’t actually see a lot of Glenarm Castle as it’s nonetheless a personal residence. The McDonnell household has owned the castles since 1636. But vacationers can go to the Walled Garden at Glenarm Castle to take pleasure in its stunning panorama.

The walled backyard was initially created to produce contemporary fruit and greens to the citadel and neighborhood. Today, you’ll be able to take pleasure in a stroll by means of the gardens or head out to its forest mountaineering path adopted by a cease on the restaurant for a slice of contemporary cake or a light-weight lunch. Glenarm Castle Garden is price a cease because it has been dwelling to the Earls of Antrim for greater than 400 years.

There is a cool auto museum showcasing the household’s modes of transportation through the years and one other museum that’s included in your go to making it a pleasant cease on the street rip.

  • 6 Castle St, Glenarm, Ballymena BT44 0BD, UK

Glenariff Forest Park

Causeway Coastal Route Itinerary Glenariff Forest Park

Located within the well-known Glens of Antrim, Glenariff Forest Park is commonly thought of probably the most stunning of the 9 Glens of Antrim. Get out into nature to take a stroll to its spectacular waterfalls, tranquil swimming pools, and steep gorges.

Carnlough, from the Irish Carnlach, which means ‘place of cairns’, is a village in County Antrim with a picturesque harbour on the shores of Carnlough Bay. The space presents many alternatives to get out on the ocean and freshwater for some sightseeing or fishing.

The Londonderry Arms Hotel located within the village was inbuilt 1848 as a training inn by Frances Anne Vane Tempest, Marchioness of Londonderry, nice grandmother of Winston Churchill. If you need to spend the evening, it is a sensible choice.

  • Directions: Glenariffe Rd, Ballymena BT44 0QX, UK

Torr Head Scenic Route

causeway coast route torr head scenic route

The Torr Head Scenic Route is a detour from the principle Causeway Coastal Route, however it’s not to be missed. Each time we’ve pushed this street, it’s been a wild trip by means of winding surroundings and tough climate, but it surely’s been price it.

This drive doesn’t see lots of site visitors due to its slender winding street however it’s a journey you gained’t overlook. We needed to again down a steep slender hill to make room for a big tractor coming our manner. From the automotive park, you’ll be able to hike as much as a ruined fort the place you’ll take pleasure in views up and down the Antrim Coast.

Located between Cushendun and Ballycastle, this route takes you as shut as you will get to Scotland and on a transparent day, you’ll be able to see clear over the water to Scotland at solely 12 miles away! You’ll additionally be capable to spy Fair Head, The Antrim Coast, and Rathlin Island the place you’ll be able to take a ferry to the one inhabited offshore island in Northern Ireland.

  • Address: Ballycastle BT54 6RQ, UK


Causeway Coastal Route Itinerary Ballycastle

Ballycastle is a small village situated alongside the causeway coastal route that dates again to the seventeenth century. It is right here which you can catch the ferry to Rathlin Island. There is a good looking 1.2 km lengthy sandy seashore to take a stroll and there are many eating places to seize lunch at throughout your journey across the Causeway Coast.

Rathlin Island

Rathlin Island is a well-liked day journey that may be visited by way of ferry. The island is simply six miles lengthy and one mile vast with a inhabitants of solely 140 individuals. What it lacks within the human inhabitants, it makes up for in seabirds. There are greater than 250,000 seabirds that return to breed on the island annually from puffins to kittiwakes and razorbills.

Legend has it that Robert the Bruce took refuge in a cave on Rathlin Island after he was pushed from Scotland by King Edward I of England.

Dark Hedges

causeway coastal route dark hedges

The world-famous Dark Hedges are situated on Bregagh Road and are probably the most photographed location in Northern Ireland. It was made much more well-known when HBO’s Game of Thrones popped over to this street to movie a scene in season 1 the place it was used because the King’s Road.

It isn’t precisely situated on the principle Causeway Coastal Route, however as a result of it’s only a brief detour, we’re including it. This placing scene with 90 Beech timber lining this street creating a cover of twisting branches overhead is to not be missed.

The Stuart household planted the timber within the eighteenth century to welcome company as they approached their Georgian mansion. Today the timber have grown into some of the spectacular views and some of the fashionable vacationer sights in Northern Ireland.

Read all about it at The Dark Hedges of Northern Ireland – Tips to Visit and What you Need to Know

Carrick-A-Rede Rope Bridge

causeway coastal route carrick a rede rope bridge

The Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge is a must-see cease in your drive alongside the Causeway Coastal Route Itinerary. The panorama alone is certainly one of Northern Ireland’s best. While we had been there, we noticed an infinite basking shark feeding within the waters under so be sure to maintain a watch out for wildlife.

The first rope bridge at Carrick a Rede was as soon as solely utilized by daring fishermen crossing the damaging rope dangling over the ocean. Today the brand new and improved Carrick a Rede Rope Bridge hyperlinks the island of Carrickarede to the mainland in a far much less harmful method. Albeit crossing the rope bridge continues to be somewhat hairraising. It might not be as precarious because it as soon as was, however it’s nonetheless very thrilling.

Visitors who traverse the 30-meter (90 ft) deep rope bridge are rewarded with unimaginable views of the North Coast.

Ballintoy Harbour

causeway coastal route Ballintoy Harbor

Ballintoy Harbour is a picturesque fishing village situated only a brief drive from the Carrick a Rede rope bridge. The waves are highly effective right here creating an awe-inspiring scene. This harbor is so picturesque that the harbour stood in because the Iron Islands within the Game of Thrones. It was used for the scene the place Theon Greyjoy returned to his boyhood dwelling of Pyke on the Iron Islands (Lordsport Harbour) and meets his sister Yara.

Ballintoy comes from the “Baile an Tuaigh” which means “the northern townland” and it positively feels that manner. It is northern, rugged, and wild. In city, you’ll discover an array of small retailers and two church buildings.

We liked stopping at Ballintoy Harbour as a result of tour buses can not get down. The slender winding street makes it an ideal cease away from the crowds. Read extra: A Game of Thrones Tour of Northern Ireland

Giant’s Causeway

causeway coastal route Giants Causeway sunset

Giant’s Causeway is probably the most extraordinary sight in all of Northern Ireland and is a geological surprise on the Causeway Coastal Route. If there may be one attraction on the Causeway Coast that it’s essential to see, that is it! This UNESCO World Heritage Site will blow you away as you might be awed by 40,000 hexagonal stone columns which are completely stacked beside one another main out to the ocean. Read extra: The Legend of the Giant’s Causeway – Do You Believe?

You can ebook day excursions to the Giant’s Causeway from Belfast should you aren’t doing a self drive across the Causeway Coastal Route. This highly rated tour takes you to see well-known sights alongside the Antrim coast earlier than reaching the Giant’s Causeway. Places you’ll see en path to the Giant’s Causeway are Cushendun Caves, Carnlough Harbour, and the Dark Hedges. Learn concerning the historical past from stay commentary on board.

causeway coastal route Giants Causeway

Legend has it that the Irish Giant, Finn McCool, constructed a large stone causeway to cross the ocean to battle the Scottish Giant, Bennandoner. It is simple to consider the legend because it is among the most uncommon sights we’ve ever seen. It appears as if a large constructed a patio of good stones making a causeway out to sea.

Science tells us that the Giant’s Causeway was really created by a volcanic eruption 60 million years in the past. As the new lava flowed to the ocean, the cool water turned them into basalt cliffs completely stacked upon each other. There are a number of mountaineering trails across the cliff edge and alongside the coast to view the extraordinary sight.

It’s a straightforward stroll all the way down to the Giant’s Causeway from the automotive park, however shuttles are provided for these with mobility points. Inside the customer middle is a present store, interpretive middle, cafe, and low store. We recommend staying on the Causeway Hotel to have all of it to your self at dawn and sundown.

You can book full day tours to the Giant’s Causeway from Belfast to see highlights of the Northern Coast together with the Causeway Coast and Visitor Centre, and Dark Hedges.


causeway coastal route Bushmills

Located only a few minutes from Giant’s Causeway is the stunning city of Bushmills. Located on the River Bush, Bushmills was fittingly named after the mills on the river. It dates again to the seventeenth century and has a excessive focus of heritage-listed buildings. It really does really feel such as you’ve stepped again in time.

This can be a preferred base for individuals to go to the Giant’s Causeway. While we suggest staying on the Causeway Hotel, Bushmills Hotel is one other wonderful alternative. It is extra upscale than the Causeway Hotel with a superb restaurant situated within the coronary heart of city.

Bushmills Distillery

causeway coastal route Bushmills distillery

Bushmills Distillery is simply 5 minutes from the Giant’s Causeway and is a good cease on the Causeway Coast. It’s Northern Ireland’s premiere distillery and Ireland’s Oldest working distillery. King James I really granted the primary distilling license to Bushmills in 1608. You can take a distillery tour to see how Irish Whiskey is produced.

Even should you don’t need to take a tour, you’ll be able to enter the customer middle to take pleasure in a little bit of its grounds to see among the distilleries and you should purchase premium whiskey at its important store. Dave loves their 16-year-old.

Dunluce Castle

causeway coastal route Dunluce Castle

Dunluce Castle is an deserted medieval citadel situated proper on the north Antrim Coast on northern coast. The citadel was constructed within the thirteenth Century and was inhabited till the late 1600s. You additionally may acknowledge this citadel from the inside sleeve of the Led Zeppelin album, “Houses of the Holy.”

When driving to Dunluce Castle from the Giant’s Causeway, take a cease on the bend within the street for the proper postcard view of the picturesque ruins.

Tours may even be booked to the Causeway Coast from Dublin. This highly rated tour is the proper day journey for individuals with restricted time however who nonetheless need to take pleasure in among the prime Northern Ireland locations after they go to Ireland. Visit the Dark Hedges, Dunluce Castle, The Giant’s Causeway and spend a while in Belfast on a guided tour from Dublin.

Magheracross Viewpoint

causeway coastal route Wishing Arch

New to the Causeway Coast is the Maghercross Viewpoint strolling path. We didn’t even know this was right here however we determined to tug over into the parking zone. It is among the greatest views on all the Causeway Coast and you actually should cease to take pleasure in a stroll alongside its paths main out to 2 lookouts. One appears in direction of Dunluce Castle whereas the opposite overlooks Whiterocks seashore. It is right here that the well-known Wishing Arch rock formation as effectively. The huge sea cliffs that rival the Cliffs of Moher.

Portrush and Whiterocks Beach

causeway coastal route Portrush

Portrush is one other must-stop on the Causeway Coastal Route. The conventional seaside resort has a beautiful outdated city to discover that has loads of motels, eating places, and bars. Portrush is known for its three sandy seashores, the West Strand, East Strand, and White Rocks Beach, and boasts the world-renowned Royal Portrush Golf Club. If you want {golfing}, that is the place to do it, Royal Portrush Golf Club is the one golf membership exterior Great Britain that has hosted The Open Championship.

causeway coastal route Whiterocks beach

Just somewhat additional down from the Maghercross is the award-winning Whiterocks Beach which isn’t solely a should for these driving alongside the Causeway Coast, however it’s also a favourite with locals too! The seashore stretches from Curran Strand to Dunluce Castle with excessive limestone cliffs jutting up from the sand.

Mussenden Temple

causeway coastal route Mussenden Temple

Mussenden Temple is situated within the stunning environment of Downhill Demesne close to Castlerock in County Londonderry. The temple is dramatically perched on a 120 ft. cliff prime, excessive above the Atlantic Ocean on the north-western coast of Northern Ireland. It is run by the National Trust and while you stroll by means of its grounds from the ruined mansion to the cliff, you’ll be handled to spectacular in each instructions.

Mussenden Temple is one more excessive lookout situated on the coast that was used as a filming location for HBO’s Game of Thrones. Built within the 18th Century by Earl Bishop, the temple and 120-foot tower is a good spot from which to look out to sea. When strolling alongside the seashore at  Benone Strand, you’ll be handled to a postcard view.

Benon Strand

causeway coastal route Benon Strand

Another stunning seashore on the opposite facet of the Mussenden Temple is Benon Strand. To attain the seashore from the automotive park, you might want to take the tunnel below the practice tracks of The Derry Colerain Railway that travels between Derry~Londonderry and Coleraine. Benone Strand is taken into account certainly one of Ireland’s most stunning and unspoiled seashores and a stroll alongside this lengthy sandy stretch is a should.

Gortmore Scenic Viewpoint

If you haven’t had sufficient spectacular views in your causeway coastal route itinerary, comply with The Bishop’s Road from Downhill to Derry, for this detour off the Causeway Coastal Route. On a transparent day, you’ll be able to see all the best way to Donegal and the islands of Islay and Jura off the west coast of Scotland.

We spent an excessive amount of time on the seashore on our final journey right here and had been itching to get to Derry, so we skipped this view, however you’ll be able to hop on it at Benon Strand for an additional gorgeous coast street drive.

Derry (Londonderry)

causeway coastal route Derry Londonderry

Derry is our finish level of the Causeway Coastal route itinerary and is a superb metropolis to spend no less than one full day. Stay at The Hotel Maldran Derry  and park your automotive as you discover the historic sights of this vibrant metropolis.

Derry is the one remaining fully walled metropolis in Ireland and one of many best examples of Walled Cities in Europe. Built between 1613 and 1618, the partitions had been constructed as a protection in opposition to English and Scottish invasions. You can stroll across the 1.5 km of preserved partitions taking in all of the sights.

Make certain to go to the neighborhood of Free Derry to study all about The Troubles that engulfed Northern Ireland in civil unrest. A guided tour is very advisable to see the Murals of Derry,

Derry is simple to get round and should you keep within the metropolis middle, you’ll be able to simply stroll to all the highest sights of this vibrant metropolis. A strolling tour of the metropolis is a superb method to study concerning the historical past, tradition, and politics of Northern Ireland.

How to Get to the Causeway Coastal Route

causeway coastal route Getting there

The causeway coast street begins in Belfast and snakes its manner across the north of the nation on a scenic coast street by means of County Antrim. It passes by means of the 9 glens of Antrim, The Giant’s Causeway and

How to Get To Belfast

causeway coastal route How to get to Belfast

We drove to Belfast from Dublin as it is just a two-hour drive between the cities. There are even day excursions that may take you from Dublin do you have to solely have a brief period of time.

You may also get to Belfast by bus and practice. There is a direct practice that connects Dublin from Dublin Connolly and arrives at Belfast Central. International vacationers will fly into Belfast International Airport the place you’ll be able to hire a automotive to start your Causeway Coastal Route itinerary on the airport.

If you might be flying from Europe or wherever throughout the United Kingdom, you’ll land at George Best Belfast City Airport which is situated simply 5 minutes from Belfast City Centre.

How to Get Around the Coast Road

The greatest method to get across the Causeway Coastal Route is the hire a automotive rent and revel in your individual street journey. You can then discover the entire prime sights at your individual tempo.

You may also ebook day excursions on Get Your Guide. There are loads of stops on the Causeway Coastal Route which you can ebook from Belfast.

We as soon as discover the Causeway Coastal Route with Paddywagon Tours and had a good time.

Where is the Causeway Coast

causeway coastal route itinerary map of counties in northern ireland

The majority of the causeway coastal route is situated in County Antrim. County Antrim is certainly one of six counties in Northern Ireland. Within County Antrim, you’ll discover the Glens of Antrim, The Giant’s Causeway, Bushmills, Portrush, and Belfast.

Our journeys alongside the Causeway Coastal Route have been in partnership with Northern Ireland. For extra data on County Antrim, Causeway coastal sights, and knowledge on the Antrim coast, go to their web site.

Plan Your Trip to Northern Ireland With These Resources

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