Giants Causeway and the Coastal Road

Giants Causeway and the coastal road

I wanted to travel to Belfast to visit the Titanic museum as part of my Top 10 UK museums series. My husband suggested we should visit Giants Causeway and the coastal road there too.

So I booked our flights and apartment in Belfast. Then we hired a car and took a day trip to enjoy the Giants Causeway and the coastal road.  There are a few routes you can take but I decided to take an early drive and head straight to the causeway. Then take a scenic drive back along the coast.  I’ve never really hired a car whilst travelling before but it gave us a lot of freedom especially with an eight-month-old child in tow.

Driving and Dunluce Castle

Dunluce Castle - Giants Causeway and the coastal road

The drive there took around an hour and a half taking the M2 then the A26 to Ballymoney before diverting down Balleybogey Road to see Dunluce Castle.  An unplanned detour but well worth a stop and a visit for seeing the rugged cliffs and ruined castle grounds. If you take Dunluce road there is a viewpoint which offers great photo opportunities. See the castle from a unique perspective outlined along the cliffs.

Giants Causeway

Giants causeway and the coastal road

We parked at the visitor centre and bought tickets on arrival. Walking down to the causeway rather than taking the bus was a good idea. We had an amazing view of the bay and it built up the excitement seeing the rocks come into focus. It wasn’t easy underfoot walking on the hexagonal rocks. Nearer the water was a little slippy, but I managed. Even with a baby attached to me in a K’tan, I managed to climb to some great viewpoints!

It was quite windy and cold so we didn’t spend a great deal of time hiking the area. But we managed to experience the beautiful National Trust site.

Driving the Coastal Road

Giants Causeway and the coastal roadTo be honest we didn’t really visit during the right season so it was a bit quiet on the way back.  This didn’t distract from the spectacular views we got to see along the road.

Top Tip: research the places where you want to stop. We picked a point on the map en route only to find there was no town or village there at all.

We did stop at a village pub for a quick drink and were treated to some complimentary pancakes! People were friendly but I think it helps that we have a cute baby with us too.

No place stood out in particular along the route but we did pass some quaint houses, farms and lovely looking beaches.

Have you visited the Giants Causeway and the Coastal Road?

What do you think about visiting the Giants Causeway and the coastal road? Have you been before or is it on your bucket list? I think it is definitely worth a visit and driving means you have the freedom and flexibility to enjoy the area.

Top UK Museums – Titanic Belfast

Titanic Belfast

About Titanic Belfast

Next, on my Top UK museums adventure, is Titanic Belfast. We visited as a family in February this year and really enjoyed the whole experience. Located on Belfast docks, it is the largest Titanic experience in the world and offers a unique and interactive way to learn about the history of the Titanic.

Titanic BelfastThe Star of the Show.

One of the most talked-about exhibits in the museum is the shipyard ride. This short electronic ride allows you to immerse yourself in the conditions and what went on when the ship was built. It breaks up walking around the museum and grabs the attention of visitors especially the kids.

My Favourite place

I enjoyed the end of the museum when the stories of the passengers you have been following throughout the tour come to an end, and you find out what became of them. The mixing of sad and happy stories and also a way to remember individuals who were affected by the tragedy.

Some other great exhibits

From the Launch experience, the decor and insides of the ship through the decks and classes to the sinking and the aftermath. The museum takes you on a journey of the life of the ship.

Titanic Belfast - Tara Bruton
Second Class Cabin Titanic Belfast – Tara Bruton

Facilities

Excellent facilities are available for visitors. There’s free Wi-Fi
throughout the building,  locker storage facility where you can leave your bags for just £1.  Car and Coach Parking is available so it’s an easy place to drive to during your trip.
You’ll find two restaurants with a wide range of options,  Bistro 401 restaurant and the Galley Café. There’s also a souvenir shop to pick up memorabilia from your visit.

Getting there and when to visit.

Titanic Belfast is open daily all year round, excluding 24th – 26th December from 10 am to 5 pm off peak and 9 am to 7 pm during peak season.  Entrance fees are £18 for adults and £8 for children aged 5 to 16 years.

Check out some of my posts on other Top UK museums, The British Museum and The Victoria and Albert.

Have you been to Titanic Belfast? What did you think?