IDEAS FOR A CAUSEWAY COASTAL ROUTE TOUR
Imagine yourself walking along high sea cliffs and taking in the sweeping views of the Causeway Coastal Route. You could also wander through ancient Celtic monuments, walk along green hills, and learn about Gaelic culture. Sit in a typical pub tasting the local brew and listen to live Irish music.
Pick one of our tailor-made tours of Ireland to immerse yourself in the stunning scenery and historic sights. The ideal Irish holiday consists of exploring the cities as well as the countryside, to take in the culture, history and beauty of the Emerald Isle.
Good to know: All of Nordic Visitor’s Ireland self-drive tour packages can be tailored by our regional experts. They can add extra nights at select locations or modify the driving routes if you have any particular attractions in mind. Just ask!
What is the Causeway Coastal Route?
The Causeway Coastal Route is a scenic itinerary starting in Belfast. It follows the coast and its many highlights until it reaches the city of Derry (also known as Londonderry). You can make this journey in a day, or take longer to explore as much as you wish.
You’re sure to find plenty of stops to catch your interest to fill your days. The jewel of Northern Ireland and most famous sight along the coast is the Giant’s Causeway. These basalt cliffs are not to be missed!
From the Causeway Coast there are also 10 other points or routes of interests you could follow. These include Torr Head, a rugged outcrop with dramatic sea cliffs, and Rathlin Island to the north.
Want to go on a Northern Ireland road trip?
One of the best ways to see Northern Ireland’s natural beauty and the Causeway Coastal Route is by driving. Take the wheel in Ireland and you’ll have the freedom to pull the car over at any attractions or breathtaking views.
With a long weekend, you could see all the highlights of the area. Here’s our suggestion for a 4-day self-drive itinerary for Northern Ireland:
Day 1 – Arrival in Northern Ireland
You may arrive by ferry from Scotland, by road from Dublin, or by plane into Belfast. Make your way to your accommodation and spend the rest of the day at leisure around the capital city.
Belfast is an exciting city which you can easily explore on foot. We recommend you to pop into some cafés or restaurants to experience the up-and-coming food scene.
Visit the Titanic Belfast museum to learn all about the famous “unsinkable” ship, which was built here in 1909. Take a walk to see the murals splayed on the Peace Walls, which once divided the Protestant and Catholic communities during “The Troubles”.
Day 2 – The Antrim Coast and Glens
Leave the city behind and make for the Antrim Coast. For a more scenic drive, take the coastal road where you could stop at Glenarm Castle estate for a visit.
We do recommend heading inland for some worthwhile stops too. Spend some quiet time in Glenariff Forest Park. And fans of Game of Thrones will want to stop at the Dark Hedges. This striking avenue is lined with twisting beech trees and served as a backdrop in the hit TV series.
End your day by taking a stroll along the coast at the Carrick-a-Rede rope bridge and enjoying views of the craggy cliffs.
Day 3 – The Giant’s Causeway
This morning, spend time at the majestic Giant’s Causeway, Northern Ireland’s most unmissable attraction. Admire the basalt columns of this UNESCO World Heritage Site, lapped by the Atlantic Ocean’s waters.
To make it a full day of exploration, nearby you could stop at the Bushmills Distillery and Dunluce Castle.
Day 4 – Travel to Derry
Stops for today include the Mussenden Temple and Downhill Demesne as well as the end of the Causeway Coastal Route, the historic city of Londonderry. It sits by the boundary with County Donegal in Ireland.
From here you can return to Belfast or continue on the unforgettable Wild Atlantic Way route into the Republic of Ireland.
Interested in visiting the Republic of Ireland too?
As you may already know, the island of Ireland is separated in 2 entities. The Republic of Ireland, which is an independent nation, and Northern Ireland, which is part of the United Kingdom (along with England, Scotland and Wales).
While they are two different countries, they share many similarities in their history, culture and, of course, their geography. For a complete tour of the island, we recommend including both the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland in your itinerary.
This way you could get to know the Emerald Isle and see all its beauty in depth.
The best part? You won’t have to worry about where you’re going or sleeping, because your Nordic Visitor travel consultant will plan your trip and sort all the details before you arrive.
We reserve your accommodation, rent a car for your trip, and can book activities to fill your days with more adventures. You’ll also have access to our 24/7 emergency helpline should you need to call us at any point.
Here’s an example of a two-week tour around Ireland, including the Causeway Coastal Route:
Day 1 – Arrive in Dublin and explore the city.
Day 2 – Pick up your rental car and drive into Northern Ireland. Overnight in Belfast.
Day 3 – Spend the day at your leisure in or around Belfast. Overnight in Belfast.
Day 4 – Causeway Coastal Route including the Giant’s Causeway. Overnight in Donegal.
Day 5 – Start your adventure on the Wild Atlantic Way coastal route. Overnight in Donegal.
Day 6 – Wander through a Stone Age cemetery and visit majestic sea cliffs. Overnight in Westport.
Day 7 – Explore the Connemara National Park. Overnight in Galway.
Day 8 – See the Cliffs of Moher. Overnight in Doolin.
Day 9 – Visit the highlights of the Killarney National Park. Overnight in Killarney.
Day 10 – Tour the Ring of Kerry. Overnight in Killarney.
Day 11 – Admire Ireland’s south coast and explore the city of Cork. Overnight in Cork.
Day 12 – Kiss the Blarney Stone and visit the Rock of Cashel. Overnight in Kilkenny.
Day 13 – Take in the Wicklow mountains before dropping off your rental car. Spend your last night in Dublin.
Day 14 – Depart from Dublin Airport.
When is the best time to visit Ireland to see the coast?
Ireland is a beautiful island to visit all year long. This means you can’t go wrong when you book your Irish getaway. That said, we recommend the summertime or its shoulder months for the best experience.
The summer, consisting of the months of June, July and August, is the high season. It is marked by long daylight hours and the best (and most stable) weather of the year. Attractions also operate under longer hours and more availability than in winter.
All of this means you can discover Ireland to your heart’s content.
However, you may find that top attractions are very popular at this time. Indeed, Ireland attracts visitors from around the world especially in summer.
If you would rather have a quieter holiday, visit during the spring or autumn. These shoulder months include April, May, September and October. During this time, you’ll find the best of both worlds: quieter attractions but plenty of good weather and daylight to explore.
Are you interested in exploring Scotland too?
Combine a tour of Ireland with a road trip around Scotland for an epic Celtic itinerary. We recommend a minimum of 10 days for this, however, so you can have enough time to have a taste of both countries.
To include the Causeway Coastal Route in your combination itinerary, we recommend our Ultimate Tour of Scotland and Ireland. This tour is 25 days long, giving you ample time to dive into both cultures and their magnificent landscapes.
You would spend the first 8 days in Scotland, touring the rugged Highlands and even discovering the Isle of Skye. Following that road trip, you would then fly to Dublin to drive around the entire island of Ireland.
First head up into Northern Ireland to visit the coast and the Giant’s Causeway before following the Wild Atlantic Way route south. Awaiting you is jaw-dropping coastal scenery and historic landmarks.
Scotland is a great destination to complement a tour to Ireland. Their cultures and history are so closely linked and you’ll be able to meet the locals and get immersed in both.
Nordic Visitor specialises in both these fantastic destinations, so we can offer tailor-made itineraries that combine the best of both.
Would you rather leave the driving to someone else?
Nordic Visitor will be setting up guided small group tours for Ireland in the future. Small groups and driver guides are a perfect addition to a foreign trip if you want to forego driving. You get to meet like-minded travellers and learn more about the country directly from local tour guides.
In the meantime, we recommend the small group tours of Ireland’s Celtic neighbour, Scotland. You could also book a private tour of Scotland to travel with your own group of friends or family and a dedicated private guide.
All tours to Ireland and Scotland can be made into a luxury tour for you. Just ask and we can tailor an itinerary with special castle stays, private airport transfers and more.
Scroll down to learn more about Nordic Visitor’s services.