Causeway Coast Self guided Walking Holidays – Hiking along the Causeway Coast in Northern Ireland
The Causeway Coast Self Guided Walking Holidays in Northern Ireland (including baggage transfers) follow the dramatic Giant Causeway coastline from Ballycastle to Portstewart.
Giant Causeway Self Guided Walking Holidays
Your hikes will take you through forests, sandy white beaches as well as rocky bays, high cliffs, quaint seaside resorts and small fishing villages. Visit the World Heritage Site and National Nature Reserve of the Giant’s Causeway, the ruins of Dunluce, Dunseverick and Kinbane Castles and if you dare cross the Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge.
Visiting Rathlin Island just six miles north of Ballycastle is a must for all outdoor and nature lovers. It is no wonder that it is so popular with birdwatchers, geologists and anyone with a love of wild and rugged landscapes. The island is ideal for both walking and cycling (rent a bike on the Island) and enjoys puffins, guillemots and razorbills that make the cliffs and sea stacks their nesting sites from early spring to summer.
Rambling the Causeway Coast Route
The Giant Causeway coast with its rugged and windswept cliffs, gorgeous scenery and unspoilt beaches is best known for the hexagonal basalt columns. But there are many interesting and beautiful places to visit while hiking along this coastline, for instance, the cliffs of Torr Head, Fair Head and Benbane Head, the vanishing lake of Loughareema and the fishermen’s rope bridge across to Carrickarede Island.
8-day Itinerary Giant Causeway Coast Walking Holiday
Day 1: Arrival in Ballycastle
Make your way to the seaside town of Ballycastle where our host will welcome you at your first accommodation.
Overnight in Ballycastle.
Day 2: Murlough Bay & Fairhead to Ballycastle
After a hearty Irish breakfast, we bring you to Murlough Bay (famous of many Game of Thrones scenes) and a Cliff-top walk across Fairhead before returning along the coast to Ballycastle. Overnight in Ballycastle.
Walk: 14 km | 4 hours | Grass tracks and minor roads.
Day 3: Rathlin Island
From your B&B it is a short walk to the Ferry which will take you to Rathlin Island (Tickets are not included and need to be pre-booked, weather-dependent). The island with its colonies of seabirds (puffins, guillemots and razorbills along with kittiwakes and fulmars) is L-shaped and offers a variety of walks. You can also rent a bike if you prefer to visit the RSPB lighthouse and see the puffins up close. Returning to your B&B in Ballycastle for the night.
Walk: 4-8 km. | 2–3 hours | Max. height: 100m. | Roads, beach and grassy tracks.
Day 4: Walk from Ballycastle to Ballintoy
From your B&B in Ballycastle you will walk out of the town and follow quiet country roads, and forest tracks make your way to Carrick-a-rede, and it’s rope bridge before ending in Ballintoy.
The bridge spans an 80-foot deep gorge that renders Carrick-a-Rede island; a must do for every visitor and gives a fitting exciting culmination to an easy day’s walk. Overnight at Ballintoy.
Walk: 14 km. | 4 hours. | Max. Height: 120m. | Grass & Forest tracks and some road walking.
Day 5: Walk from Ballintoy to the Giant Causeway and Bushmills
We walk back to the Carrick-a-rede car park to continue along the best coastal walk in Ireland by far! With its diverse geology and spectacular views across to Scotland and walks along cliffs and white sandy beaches, the Giant Causeway coastal route is truly in a class of its own! Not far from Ballintoy Harbour you come to the beautiful beach of White Park Bay and Portbraddan, with Ireland’s tiniest church. Next is Dunseverick Castle leading to the cliff-top path and on to the Giant’s Causeway.
Overnight at Portballintrae/Bushmills.
Walk: 18 km | 5 hours | Max. Height: 120m. | Grass tracks, beach and road walking.
(Some parts of this walk are tidal so please take note of high tide – See walking route notes)
Day 6: Giant Causeway & Bushmills Distillery
Return for a visit to the Giant Causeway and explore the many sights around the coast and/or visit the Bushmills distillery in the town.
Overnight in Bushmills.
Day 7: Hike from Portballintrae to Portstewart
On your final walk in Northern Ireland, you follow the coastal road to Portrush via Magheracross viewpoint and Dunluce Castle. Shortly after the castle, you continue on to Whiterocks beach, and a path leads around Ramore Head and Portrush Harbour. Following the last part of the way marked way and along Mill Strand you continue along the coastline ending in Portstewart. Overnight at Portstewart.
Walk: 18 km. | 5 hours | Max. Height: 120m. | Walking along; roads, beach and grassy tracks.
Day 8: Departure
After breakfast and farewell at Portstewart, you commence your homeward journey.
Below you will find our options and highlights for our 5 to 7+ day walking tours
Plus we can always adjust the program to suit your needs so please contact us should you want to make any changes that are not specifically listed.
5 Day Program:
Day 1 Arrival in Ballycastle
Day 2 Walk from Ballycastle to Carrick-a-rede Rope Bridge (Ballintoy). Walk: 16 km
Day 3 Walk from Ballintoy to Giant Causeway (Bushmills). Walk: 19 km
Day 4 Walk from Bushmills to Portstewart. Walk: 18 km
Day 5 Departure from Portstewart
(+Day): Spend a day (or two) visiting Belfast and the Titanic Visitors Centre. This day can also be booked at the start of your walking holiday in ireland.
6/7 Day Program:
Day 1: Arrival in Ballycastle
Extra Day: Walk from Murlough Bay & Fairhead to Ballycastle. Walk: 14 km
Day 2: Visit Rathlin Island. Walk: 4-7 km
Day 3: Walk from Ballycastle to Carrick-a-rede Rope Bridge (Ballintoy). Walk: 16 km
Day 4: Walk from Ballintoy to Giant Causeway (Bushmills). Walk: 19 km
Day 5: Walk from Bushmills to Portstewart. Walk: 18 km
Day 6: Departure from Portstewart
(+Day) Spend a day (or two) visiting Belfast and the Titanic Visitors Centre. This day can also be booked at the start of your walking holiday in ireland.
Nice company, everything was well organised. Beautiful walking tours
Everything was very well organised on our walking holiday and we loved our experience!
We’ll be back for sure!
It was a great hiking/walking holiday. B&B’s were good and the people were friendly. The routes were alternate, sometimes challenging. Most important was, when we needed Cliff, he was there for us and solved our problem. He did a great job! I’m already making plans for my next walking holiday in Ireland 🙂
For our walking holiday in the Cooley & Mournes we advise the following airport(s):
Alternatives: Dublin Airport
For advise on public transport in Northern Ireland please visit: http://translink.co.uk
Glens of Antrim and Giant Causeway Coast Self Guided Walking Holidays in Ireland
Start: Every Day
Season: 10 Jan – 20 Dec
Walk with Dogs: No
* Price per person based on 2 people sharing a double or twin room.
We always recommend that you buy travel insurance!