We spend as much time here as possible with our family of 3 children and our dog Lily. Time stands still in Portballintrae and the world seems a million miles away. Our bungalow is decorated cape code style, the kitchen is well equipped with all the necessary appliances. A car is great to explore the Giants Causeway but get your walking shoes on to ramble along the beach and dunes. Relax in the conservatory overlooking endless fields while the kids play on the 12' trampoline and swing set in the garden.
Highlights for us are spending lazy days on the beach counting the crabs we catch, jumping in the harbour, kayaking with our kayak on the harbour, cycling to the nook for a drink, a fry up in the copper kettle on a Sunday with the papers, going to Barry's and eating dinky doughnuts on the beach, boogie boarding on portstewart strand, telling spooky stories in the Bushmills Inn, swimming in the large rock pools at the local beach, walking Lily (our dog) along beautiful Runkerry strand while the kids run through the sand dunes, tea at the golf club with 'the view' , walking Whiterocks beach to get a hot chocolate in the restaurant 55 degrees north, surfing with Ricky from alive surf school, coasteering with Matthew for an adrenaline rush - the list is endless !
Welcome to the Causeway Coast and Glens
The beautiful Causeway Coast has something for everyone ... including the Giant's Causeway!
If water is your element, plunge into the Blue Flag breakers at Ballycastle and Portrush, or the bracing waters of Portballintrae. Cliff-topped beaches stretch for miles. Watersports abound; sailing, surfing, sea angling and scuba, with many charter hire and marina facilities. Dive deep into the clear waters around Rathlin Island with Aquaholics Dive Centre. Or walk above the waves on the Carrick-a-Rede rope bridge.
Plenty for families too: safe sandy shores, open farms, rides and amusements, and the Dunluce Centre with viewing tower and 3 adventure areas - even an indoor Waterworld at Portrush.
Whatever your resort requirements, the Causeway Coast has it. Tiny hamlets, family places like Ballycastle and bustling Portrush teeming with nightlife, or Portballintrae for a quieter, adult break. Why not cruise to Rathlin and commune with nature?
It's not all surf, sand and castles crumbling off clifftops (Dunluce Castle). The Causeway Coast has some of the world's best golf - 30 top courses with the links at Royal Portrush being the granddaddy of them all which is 3 miles from the house. After 18 holes, head inland to Ireland's oldest working distillery, Bushmills. Bushfoot Golf Club is 200m from the house you are spoilt for choice! The local town of Bushmills is a 20m walk or hop on one of our bicycles. There are many sites to be seen along the Antrim Coast including Duncluce Castle, the Carrickrede rope bridge and the Bushmills distillery.
As one of Ireland's top tourist areas, there's plenty happening. Just for starters, the Seniors' Open, the Ould Lammas Fair, Rathlin Festival and the North West 200.
The Glens of Antrim
From the County Antrim town of Larne, rugged cliffs stretch north for 80 miles, broken only by 9 deep green glens.
Winding on past spectacular scenery, solve the mystery of the beech maze at Carnfunnock Country Park. Splash down at the beaches of Ballygally, Glenarm, Carnlough, Cushendall or Cushendun. The Glenarm Estate is certainly worth viewing on its open days. Not far inland is Slemish Mountain, where St. Patrick tended sheep as a young slave.
The coast road becomes even more tortuous, but the views of Scotland are worth it. Glenariff, Queen of the Glens, is fairest of them all with the wild beauty of its waterfalls and trail skirting a sheer plunging gorge.
Cushendall, capital of the Glens, is a lively centre of music, dance and craic. Next stop is Cushendun, a National Trust preserved village, famed for its Cornish cottages.
The Glens are equally famous for their festivals, exemplified by the Heart of the Glens festival at Cushendall in August. Not to be outdone, Glenarm, Carnlough and Cushendun have festival weeks in July.
For further information on the area visit www.causewaycoastandglens.com