Antrim Hills WayLinear, 22 miles
Uneven, hilly and usually wet
The North Coast and Antrim area is justifiably famous for the Giant’s Causeway, wonderful coastlines and a unique natural beauty.
The area includes three designated areas of outstanding natural beauty. Benbane Head on the Causeway Coast Way was voted ‘Most Epic View’ in the inaugural WalkNI awards.
The area has nine glens including Glenariff the ‘Queen of the Glens’, lush forest parks, secluded coastal tracks and numerous quaint fishing villages.
Walking routes exploring this world famous landscape are linear with good transport and accommodation options.
The Glens of Antrim in particular will appeal to hillwalkers and offer some stunning views towards Scotland, the Isle of Man and England.
The Causeway Coast way is 33 miles (52 km) in length and is widely regarded as one of the finest coastal walks in Ireland. The routes passes by Dunluce Castle, The Giant’s Causeway and Carrick-a-rede Rope Bridge.
Now standing as one of Northern Ireland’s best loved attractions, local fishermen first erected the famous rope bridge to Carrick-a-Rede island over a 23m-deep and 20m-wide chasm to enable them to safely check their salmon nets.
The L-shaped Rathlin Island, sits just 6 miles off the North Antrim coast. The island itself is 6 miles long and 1 mile wide. In the 18th Century 1,200 people lived permanently on Rathlin Island. This number has dwindled significantly over the years and the most recent census recorded the population on the island to be 82. The island is most famous for its vast array of bird life, seal colonies and panoramic views. All this can be seen on one of Rathlin’s spectacular coastal walks.
The Giant’s Causeway UNESCO World Heritage Site was created from a volcanic eruption which occurred approximately 60 million years ago, the result of which created over 40,000 intriguing hexagonal columns which have attracted visitors for centuries.
A dedicated “rambler” bus service operates through the North Coast from April – September. This service runs in both directions from Coleraine to Carrick-a-rede and picks walkers up at 9 points along the Causeway Coast Way. Please see the Useful Information section for more details.
There are 2 walking festivals in this area; The Castlerock Walkfest and the Walk the Glens Walking Festival. The Castlerock Walkfest is organised by the Castlerock Community Association and is Northern Ireland’s newest walking festival. As it is only in it’s infancy this is still a relatively small walking festival. The Walk the Glens Festival, based around the Glenariff, Cushendall & Cushendun areas, offers walking in breath taking surroundings. The main attraction of this festival is simply spectacular walks led by knowledgeable locals. Find out more about both these walking festivals here.
This guide is written by walkers for walkers.
It is designed to give an informative insight into walking in one of Northern Ireland’s most renowned areas of outstanding natural beauty.
Included in the guide are detailed itineraries, images and route descriptions plus local information such as ‘best places to eat’ and ‘walker friendly’ accommodation options.
Download this Walker’s Guide below.
Away A Wee Walk is a tour guiding and walking company offering day trips to the Causeway Coast from Belfast. You will be transported from Belfast via bus (departing from Belfast International Youth Hostel at 9.30am) to the Causeway Coast where you will experience a tour along a stunning 5 mile cliff path walk. It is a unique way to visit the world famous coastline and also means that you don’t have to miss out on this spectacular area of Northern Ireland if you are staying in Belfast.
Cavehill Walking tours are also available. A guided walk from the front doors of the Belfast Castle to McArt’s Fort on Cavehill is by far the most unique experience available in Belfast. Witness amazing scenery across Belfast and all its surrounding areas and hear about the fascinating history.
The company also organise private walking tours for small groups to the Causeway Coast and other beautiful walking areas in Northern Ireland.
We offer bespoke walking activities tailored to the interests, fitness levels and time available to walkers. These must be booked by prior arrangement but can be available any day mostly before noon and can include a picnic lunch for small groups if requested. Walks ranging from 15 mins village trails to 1 hour coastal, forest or river walks to 2-3 hours hillwalking are on offer as are themed heritage walks on archaeology, industrial heritage, nature and wildlife and exploration of an old friary ruins and church trail. Costs range from £3 – £10, with lunch extra.
Rathlin Walking Tours offers an interesting and informative day out. If you want we can offer expert advice on island flora and fauna, although many groups are happy to settle for an alll round experience
We organise self-guided walking holidays on the Causeway Coastal Way and in other areas of Northern Ireland.
We offer “guest house to guest house” walking with luggage transfers or “single centre” walking with transfers to the start of and from the end of each daily walk.