Tour Northern Ireland
Northern Ireland is a compact region which offers landscapes, castles, geology, lakes, wildlife, film locations, a whiskey distillery, Irish culture, hiking trails, gardens and much more.
|Visitors at Giant's Causeway|
The Province of Northern Ireland, which is part of the United Kingdom, has a population of 1.8 million. Historically, Northern Ireland formed part of the Ui Neill territory. The Anglo-Normans arrived in 1169 and took control. During the 16th and 17th centuries Protestant settlers from England and Scotland were introduced and allocated land confiscated from locals. Ireland was partitioned in 1920 and 1922 leaving Northern Ireland (Ulster) within the U.K. In 1999 the Good Friday Agreement re-set the relationship between Northern Ireland, Republic of Ireland and United Kingdom.
Following the 1999 settlement Northern Ireland has become a popular tourist destination and has much to offer in this respect.
Sightseeing in Northern Ireland.
The following is a highlights summary from east to west in an anti-clockwise direction:-
- Strangford Lough (lake): Birdwatching, hiking, canoeing, photography, heritage houses and gardens.
- Belfast:Capital city with museums, art galleries, parks, gardens, shopping and a broad spread of cultural life.
- Larne: Ferry port with rich and varied history.
- Antrim Glens (valleys): Includes Glenariff, Glenballyeamon, Glenaan.
- Antrim Round Tower: Early, round monastic tower from 7th century.
- Ballycastle: A small coastal town with a rich heritage and culture.
- Bonamargy Priory: Ruined Franciscan priory near Ballycastle
- Rathlin Island: Popular with walkers and birdwatchers.
- Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge:Spans a short chasm.
- Ballintoy Harbour: Quaint and historic harbour with caves.
- Giant's Causeway: A stunning geological site dating back 62m years.
- Causeway Coast Way: A hiking trail with bays, beaches and cliffs.
- Moyle Region: Beaches, harbours, cliffs, waterfalls.
- Bushmills Distillery: Triple distilled Irish Whiskey. Tours available.
- Dunluce Castle: Former power base of the MacDonnells. Now a ruin.
- Dark Hedges: Impressive, 300 year old avenue of beech trees.
- Londonderry:(Derry): History, heritage and 2013 U.K City of Culture.
- Fermanagh Lakelands: Enniskillen Castle, caves, canoeing, angling.
- Ring of Gullion, Armagh: Natural beauty with heritage and activities.
- Mourne Mountains: Spectacular scenery with historic communities.
- Gardens: Ulster Garden Trail and Ulster Gardens Scheme.
- Golf: About 28 courses to choose from.
- Game of Thrones: Visit sites associated with this popular TV series.
Visiting Northern Ireland
Northern Ireland is just a 2 hour 30 min ferry ride from Scotland (Cairnryan and Stranraer) There are flights from the mainland U.K.and other parts of the world to Belfast and Londonderry (Derry). A direct rail link operates between Belfast and Dublin in the Republic of Ireland.