Rathlin Island lies just over six miles from Ballycastle and fourteen miles from the Mull of Kintyre, Scotland. Rathlin Island is situated within the Antrim Coast and Glens Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Rathlin is popular with bird watchers, geologists, botanists, divers and sea anglers – and anyone with a love for wild rugged scenery. It includes several important natural heritage sites and is particularly internationally important for its flora, seabird colonies and in some cases its unique underwater marine life. In addition to this it has many interesting listed buildings and a strong cultural heritage, with story telling, songs, and music. Legend has it that Rathlin Island was the stopping place for Robert the Bruce and the famed spider.
To reach the Island, take the ferry from Ballycastle across Rathlin to the harbour at Church Bay, the trip takes about 25 minutes on the Rathlin Express. As you sail along, you can identify the main features of the North Antrim Coast with Fair Head towering above the sea marking the topmost corner of Ulster. Slough na Morra, ‘swallow of the sea’, is a whirlpool in the sea south of Rue Point, the southern tip of Rathlin. You don’t have to do the round trip in one day: there are places to stay and a pub and café at the harbour. Visitors’ cars are restricted, so the roads are quiet and ideal for walking and cycling. On the island you can follow the Sustrans National Cycle Network Route 93 to the West Lighthouse, East Lighthouse and Rue Lighthouse.
Rathlin Island Ferry
(Prior booking essential)
028 2076 9299
Information supplied by Moyle District Council © 2012 | www.moyle-council.org
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