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EVENTS : NB early notice

1.     The UK have secured its second start of a Grand cycling Tour in 2014.  The 2014 Giro d'Italia will start in Ireland. The Giro d'Italia is the second largest grand tour behind the Tour de France. The Grand Tour cycling race is one of the world’s biggest sporting events and The Grande Partenza or 'Big Start' of the Giro d'Italia will take place in Northern Ireland over three days from 9-11 May 2014.  Day 2 - tour of Co. Antrim passing through Carnlough on return to Belfast. 

2.  - A £6m project to restore an historic coastal path in east Antrim is due to begin summer 2013. The Gobbins cliff path on Islandmagee is about half a mile long. It was built in 1902 and in its heyday was more popular than the Giant's Causeway, but the attraction - with 15 bridges and a path carved into the cliffside - fell into disrepair after World War II.  It is hoped both the new visitors centre and the cliff face path will be completed and open to visitors by May 2014.

May 2014      Tulip Festival  in Glenarm Castle walled garden  

July 2014    Dalriada Festival Week - Culture Glenarm Castle

End July – beginning August 2014 to be confirmed -  Carnlough Festival week which includes Art Exhibition   

August  2014 -  Craft Fair  in walled garden Glenarm Castle

PLACES TO SEE:  The world famous Giants Causeway with its array of hexagonal basalt columns and tales of ancient Irish giants, and 'Old Bushmills' distillery are just two attractions which are a must for every itinerary.  The Giant's Causeway is a world heritage site and Old Bushmills is the world's oldest licensed whiskey distillery.

The dramatic Antrim Coast Road starting at Larne is dotted with romantically beautiful stretches of golden sand.

Just 45 minutes by boat from Ballycastle is the intriguing, L-shaped Rathlin Island with its 175 different species of birds.

This is where you can thrill to the ping of a well-struck tee-shot on miles of fabulous fairway at over 30 golf courses including the world famous Royal Portrush.  A number of golf courses offer reduced green fees for our residents.  This is a region catering for all activities, whatever your choice - sea fishing, fresh water fishing in the lakes and salmon fishing on the rivers, sailing, diving, golf, horse riding, cycling or walking ­ it's all here.  Many areas are suitable for walking however the Ulster Way provides miles of tracks for keen ramblers and hill walkers.

DUNLUCE CENTRE   Description: Family entertainment centre. The North Antrim Coast, Turbo Tours - motion simulation thrill-ride, Earthquest - interactive nature trail, Tumble Town - adventure play centre. Viewing tower, shops, cafe. Wheelchair access, except tower.

GLENARIFF FOREST PARK   -  Description: Spectacular glen walk with three waterfalls. Scenic path and trails to mountain viewpoints. Visitor centre. Shop, restaurant. Wheelchair access. Picnic and Barbecue areas,Tea House, Way-marked Trails, Horse riding routes, Disabled Facilities. 

OSSIAN’S GRAVE  Location : Off A2, 3 miles south of Cushenden. Signposted, carpark after half a mile. Description: A Neolithic court grave & Megalithic tomb on slopes of Tievebulliagh mountain. The warrior-bard Ossian was the son of the legendary Finn McCool. A cairn nearby commemorates John Hewitt, the 20th century Ulster poet.

ANTRIM ROUND TOWER: Remains of a Celtic monastic settlement. Off Steeple Rd, Antrim.  Description: Antrim Round Tower was built in the 9th century or early 10th century and is one of the finest of its kind in Ireland. It is 28 metres tall and may have served as a bell tower but it also protected the monks and their treasures during times of trouble.

CARRICKFERGUS CASTLE  -   Description: One of Irelands finest Medieval castles. Construction began in 1180 by John de Courcy, conqueror of East Ulster and remained garrisoned until 1928.  Guided tour, information boards and models well as an audio visual display. Shop, cafe and wheelchair access throughout the grounds. Last admission 30 minutes before closing time.

LAYDE OLD PARK: Cushendall, County Antrim Phone: (028) 20762225
Description: Located one mile from Cushendall are the delightful ruins of a 13th century Franciscan foundation. Chief burial place of the MacDonnells after Bonamargy which has been built at least three times and served as a parish church from 1306 to the end of the 18th century. Fine stones in the graveyard include a cross in memory of Doctor James MacDonnell, pioneer in the use of chloroform for surgical operations. Free access to the site all year round.

LARNE ROUND TOWER:  At the entrance to the seaport, looking exactly like one of Ireland's medieval monastic towers, it is 92ft high and built of granite.

OLDERFLEET CASTLE:  A 13th century ruin where stone age flint implements may still be found Larne on the Curran Point.

SLEMISH MOUNTAIN: Close to Broughshane this scenic mountain reflects the seasons splendidly (autumnal heathers snow capped in the winter, lush green in spring/summer) small enclosed exhibition centre on local geography history and folklore regarding Saint Patrick. Open all year round.

CARRICK-A-REDE ROPE BRIDGE  -  Description: This well-known precarious rope bridge that crosses an 80-foot deep chasm is a popular attraction for all ages, run by The National Trust. Just 20 minutes from the Giant's Causeway, it makes an excellent day-trip from Carnlough. Visitors walk one mile along the coastal path before crossing the bridge to the peaceful island with fabulous views over to Scotland.
The bridge is put up by local salmon fishermen every year.

    Dunluce Castle, County Antrim

DUNLUCE CASTLE:   -  Description: This spectacular castlecrowned crag on the famous north Antrim coast was shaped when the sea cut deep into the land, exploiting cracks on either side of the rock. Dunluce Castle was originally occupied by the O'Donnells and was set to seige by the British in the 16th Century. They eventually signed an accord with the British in the name of peace.  Dunluce Castle is thought by many to be the most picturesque and romantic of Irish castles.


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