Escape To The Country
Chances are you’ve been to Northern Ireland. You might even live there. If that’s the case, you’ll have to excuse my naive enthusiasm, but I’ve enjoyed my first visit only recently. I can’t wait to go back. My friends and I (there were eight of us in total) decided to enjoy a long weekend without breaking the bank. While I was sceptical that this was even possible, it turns out that the NI coastline has everything you could possibly want – and more.
We journeyed to Portrush, a charming coastal town nestled in County Antrim, about an hour and 15 minutes from Belfast. Our bolthole for the weekend was the Portrush Atlantic Hotel, which has spectacular sea views and some of the friendliest staff you’ll find – possibly ever. The local attractions include the Giant’s Causeway, an absolute necessity for any visitors thanks to its breathtaking, unspoilt beauty, and the Old Bushmills Distillery, which will make you an expert in the art of whiskey-making in under an hour.
Wend your way along the vertiginous coastal paths, stopping at cosy inns for a traditional pub lunch before exploring rope bridges, magnificent castles and some of the filming locations for Game Of Thrones. The food was some of the best we’d all had in a long time and, needless to say, the Guinness was on tap. If you’re looking for a weekend of pure escapism, Portrush has it all.
The unspoilt beauty of the Giant’s Causeway