AUTUMN DAY ON THE NORTH COAST
What else would you do, when you're two retail workers who get an extremely rare full day off together?
Well, visit the Northern Ireland’s north coast, of course!
Hey, my name is Sasha (Insta @sashaferg).
I love adventuring, traveling, urbex, photography, drawing (@sashafergart - hoping to land a an illustration job someday) and cheese. Super-love cheese.
Matt (@matt.culbert), Mollie (our cute wee staffy, she’s not on Instagram) and I like to go on adventures all round Ireland and beyond.
Here we are, the 3 amigos >
At the beginning of the year we were away to Asia for 3 months, then Eastern Europe for a month.
Now we’re both broke :) and working ridiculous hours to save for the next adventure and a house.
Recently we took a trip up the North Coast, ‘on the cheap’, trying not spending big amounts on the ‘typical tourist things’.
Here’s what we got up to!
(There’s a map at the very bottom of this page to try this road trip yourself)
1 - The Dark Hedges
Made famous by Game of Thrones, this was our first time visiting since the vehicle ban on the road - definitely a plus. At this time of year (end of peak visitor season to NI) there are fewer people on the road…perfect for that clear shot!
2 - Pit stop at Bothy Coffee
(@bothywhiteparkbay) This was my first time here - had a great hot chocolate and a HUGE ‘Fifteen’ bun. If you’re lucky, you’ll get to see the bulls chilling on the beach at White Park Bay.
Have a nosey first from the lookout point before you hike down - you’ll be able see from there if they’re out!
3 - Magheracross Car Park
You’re probably thinking, ‘why is this headcase telling me to stop at a carpark?’ Well, if you stop here and walk in the direction of Portrush (west), you’ll find some of the most beautiful sea arches in all of Ireland.
A quick stop, but breathtaking.
4 - Whiterocks Strand
Personally, to me this is the second most stunning beach in Northern Ireland (we’ll get to the first in a moment). You’re best to go when the tide is out and walk to your left - you’ll find some more amazing sea arches and caves!
5 - Mussenden Temple
We skipped a fair bit of the central part of the Causeway Coast and went straight to Mussenden Temple, an old library that balances on the cliff edge above Downhill Beach.
Unfortunately it was closed when we got there (not sure why) but we were still able to see the amazing views of the beach below. Keep back if you’re afraid of heights!
6 - Benone Beach
My very favourite beach in Northern Ireland - pure golden sand, park the car right on it and enjoy. We had a second pit stop at Sea Shed (@seashedcoffee) - a class little coffee shop perched on the edge of the sand dunes.
They have my favourite hot chocolate in all of NI, ‘Spanish hot chocolate with cream and marshmallows’.
We parked the car on the beach, chilled on the boot edge and let Mollie run through the waves.
7 - Portstewart Strand
Heading back on ourselves (going east again), we stopped at Portstewart Stand. It has some pretty cool overhanging rocks.
My tip for here would be not to park on the beach - that’ll cost you £10 - just park in the street and walk for 2 minutes down again. (Benone is free entry for cars by the way).
8 - Elephant Rock
To finish off our day, we went further east to Ballintoy and the Elephant Rock. The grey sky finally broke - but that didn’t stop us as we still ventured to the Rock (got completely soaked) and climbed the nearby archway before darkness fell.
Time to head off home. Roll on the next day off!
Thanks for reading,
PS - here’s our route, click on the image and try it yourself!