Thursday, 28 June 2018

Islandmagee - A to Z of Places I have Visited


I am writing about some places I have visited in alphabetical order.
Still wondering what I will do for the more unusual letters like Q and X etc. but maybe I will have a brilliant idea later.





A few years ago we went on a little birthday trip of a couple of days around some places in the Antrim Coast in Northern Ireland (which is part of the Causeway Coastal Route)




and on the drive home we passed signs for Islandmagee.

I had always heard of this name before and just assumed it was a town somewhere in Northern Ireland but on this day I discovered it wasn't a town it was a peninsula.  So since then I have thought someday we should go and drive round to investigate what it is like.


So that day finally came on Monday of this week.





Ok so yes one of the reasons we went this week was because I could not think of anywhere I had visited that started with the letter "I" but it has been absolutely splendid hot sunny weather here with unusually high temperatures and we had previously agreed to try to take one day or afternoon out somewhere each week for relaxation and exercise.


So off to Islandmagee we went for the afternoon on Monday.

Parts of it are owned or at least looked after by the National Trust and we had become members last year but where we went in Islandmagee on this first trip we only saw their sign once and there were no fees or car parking to be paid for so being members was of no advantage to us there.

We do love the Antrim Coast but have not visited that area as much as we should have in the past and driving along beside Belfast Lough along the route to our destination was just beautiful with the sun gleaming off the water.

The most famous part of this peninsula to us was The Gobbins Cliffs which we had heard a lot about in the past few years due to the work that had been done in making a complete walking path around them.

There are good signposts for The Gobbins Visitors Centre which is attractive from the outside





and also on the inside and is free to go in to find out about the Gobbins Trail,



have something to eat in the cafe or have a look around the gift shop.  This is where you book for the walking tours which must be done in advance and you need to be aware of the health and safety considerations before you decide to go on the walk.  Not for the fainthearted or anyone with any fitness problems.








The thing I noticed most about the Centre was the family friendly atmosphere both inside and out with a couple of things to specifically amuse the children while the grownups would be reading and finding out more about the area and a good play park outside.




After looking around here we drove along some of the wider roads and followed Google Maps directions on the phone for Port Muck.  This took us on to some rather narrow roads as we got closer to our destination.

The advantage of these narrower roads was the great view out to sea and we found an ideal spot to stop and take a huge amount of photographs as we were on the height looking down over the land and sea.

Fred was trying to get a panoramic picture of the coast and the Irish Sea while I was taking individual pictures.





We spied a rocky headland jutting out into the sea




and I tried to zoom in more




but the distance was too great to give a true picture of it.

But I'll come back to that later.


We drove on down to Port Muck Harbour which you can see on the map above is on the NE of Islandmagee.

Again it was time to take a lot of photographs.

It consists of a little harbour with some sand,





rocks and more rocks





and more rocks which we love - there is just something about rocky coves in Northern Ireland it is hard to find better ones in the rest of the world that I have been to (or am I just biased?).





People were fishing from the jetty, sitting on the jetty, sitting on the grass area and some on the small beach.  It was not crowded and felt very peaceful.


Other people were going for walks in two different directions from the harbour both led uphill the first with steps and the second on a grassy hillside path.





While I was taking pictures of the harbour and sea Fred was already on the steps waiting for me to come for a walk.

At the top of the steps there was another set of steps to take you down to some rocks but then we spied the headland we had seen earlier - I did say I would get back to this.



Islandmagee - When is an Island not an Island?

The headland wasn't a headland it was an island





but is it an Island that is at certain times connected to Islandmagee?




When the tide is low could anyone walk across?

That is the big question I have yet to have time to investigate.









If you missed any of the previous places in this series just click on the Titles below:

A for Alicante
B for Bratislava
C for Calpe
D for Durbuy
E for Ennis
F for Florida
G for Gran Canaria
H for Hong Kong





2 comments:

  1. You have certainly traveled to some interesting and beautiful places!

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  2. Those are some really fantastic pictures. I too have often used my blog as an excuse to travel even more. It's one really great perk!

    ReplyDelete