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Giants Causeway

nr Bushmills, Co. Antrim

Quick Guide
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"A World Heritage Site"

Probably the best known landmark of Northern Ireland and a World Heritage site, on the north coast of County Antrim. It consists of around 40,000 interlocking polygonal basalt columns, jutting out into the sea amid a spectacular coastal landscape of cliffs, headlands and crashing waves.  It is also a site of international importance for flora and fauna.

It is believed that the Causeway was created during a period of volcanic activity some 60 million years ago. The columns being created when lava cooled quickly upon flowing into the sea. The surrounding cliffs also demonstrate the many lava flows that have shaped the North Antrim landscape.

Local folklore offers an alternative explanation for the Causeway’s creation. It is said that it was built by the Irish Giant Finn MacCool so that he could cross the Irish Sea to Scotland to challenge a rival giant, Benandoner. Finn is also credited with the creation of the Isle of Man, which is said to have been formed when he scooped a massive sod of earth to launch at his rival. The resulting hole filled with water to become Lough Neagh.

Although worldwide it is known as the Giants Causeway it has been given other names to describe the formations of rock, these are the Giant’s boot, camel, harp, the organ and the wishing chair.

There is a  bus service, 'Causeway Coaster', which runs from the visitor centre to the Grand Causeway throughout the year. The route, though steep, can also be walked.

The wider Causeway area offers other opportunities for walkers including the Causeway Coast Path which extends east for some 12 miles to the famous Carrick-a-rede Rope Bridge. Interpretative panels along the route provide information about the history, mythology and scientific interest of the area.

It is owned and managed by the National Trust.

Location: Giants Causeway, nr Bushmills, Co. Antrim, Northern Ireland

Grid Reference: C952452 Ceremonial County: Co. Antrim

Map Link: Multimap

Aerial photo: Multimap Aerial Photo

Getting there: From Bushmills take the B146 Causeway-Dunseverick road East for 2 miles.

Access: Car park and tourist information centre operated by Moyle District Council
Website: The Giants Causeway   Giants Causeway Visitor Centre     National Trust
Other Useful Websites: Wiki     www.causewaycoastandglens.com
Email: giantscauseway@nationaltrust.org.uk
Address: 44a Causeway Road, Bushmills, Co. Antrim
Postcode: BT57 8SU Telephone: 028 2073 1582
Opening Times: All year except 25/26 December

Charges: Free to access but there is a car park fee

Nearby Locations: Causeway & Bushmills Steam Railway 200 yards.

Other Location Pages: White Park Bay

Notes: Dogs on leads only. Tea room

World Heritage Sites

World Heritage Sites - Further Information

World Heritage Sites in the UK





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By: Tracey Park Section: Key:
Page Ref: giants_causeway Topic: Beaches, Bays and Coastal  Last Updated: 07/2009

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