Date of Trip: May 2008
“The eighth wonder of the world” – The Giants Causeway Area – County Antrim, Northern Ireland
On my recent vacation to Northern Ireland, I had the chance to see the breath taking scenery – water, hills, greenery, rocks, cliffs etc in the Giants Causeway and Glens of Antrim area.
I highly recommend a bus tour and there are several reputable companies in Belfast (and other areas of Ireland). You can book online easily for the journey.
Wearing comfortable shoes is a must as there is a lot of walking involved. Depending on the time of year, it is a good idea to dress in layers as you may wish to shed them when you get warm during the day – casual clothing like jeans, etc is a good idea. Having a good bottle of water with you is a good idea as well. And of course, make sure to have your camera with you & some spare batteries for it to capture the amazing scenery.
The entire trip from start to finish will last for a good part of a day. But it is worth it, and there are stops for refreshments, rest, and bathroom breaks along the way.
The day I went on the trip with my best friend, the weather was warm & there was no rain either which was a bonus. We departed Belfast around 9:45 am in the morning and we would not get back to town till 5pm or a bit later. The driver takes the scenic route on the way there which is a bit longer but on the way back, the driver will use the motorways and getting back to Belfast City Centre is about 1.5 hours or so.
The driver informed us of the major stops we would make along the way during the journey and the amount of time devoted to each stop as well. Some stops were photo chances and not a chance to tour the area in depth for a long time. Carrick a Rede and Giants Causeway were the longest stops made as both areas have a lot of walking involved with them:
*Carrickfergus Castle (photos and quick viewing of the outer area)
*Antrim Coast and The Glens of Antrim (the scenery during the entire trip – with a few rest stops)
*Carrick-a-rede & Ropebridge (the Bridge crossing is optional and not for the faint of heart – 1.5 hour stop due to the walking involved)
*Bushmills Distillery (about a 1/2 hour stop to visit the gift shop and see a bit of the grounds, no tour of distillery though)
*Giants Causeway (including a meal break at the Causeway Hotel – the longest stop of the tour and the highlight – 2.5 hours visit)
*Dunluce Castle (photos and quick viewing of the outer area)
I have to say the area is full of natural beauty for sure along with history. I do want to return in the future to explore it more in depth. The tour gives you a taste of the area for sure, and it was well worth the all day trip out of the city to experience.
—MissRoseDarrensAngel (Janet S)