Slightly less than only 200 people call Ballintoy home and it is located very close to Carrick a Rede Rope Bridge on the north coast of Northern Ireland. Ballintoy’s harbour has changed little in centuries which makes it the perfect setting for recreating a medieval saga. This is one of the reasons why this location was used to film part of the highly popular Game of Thrones television series.
Ballintoy Beach cottage has recently installed central heating, making it ideal as an all-year-round destination.
Located on the Causeway Coastal Route between the Giant’s Causeway and Ballycastle, Ballintoy is a small village with only about 200 inhabitants. It lies 5 miles west of Ballycastle and 17 miles northeast of Coleraine, both of which are only a short drive away. This makes a Ballintoy beach cottage the perfect base from which to explore the rest of the Causeway Coast, including places like Carrick a Rede Rope Bridge, Dunluce Castle, Giants Causeway, Dark Hedges, and Royal Portrush.
The village was originally built with only a single street. In Irish, Ballintoy means “the northern townland” (Baile an Tuaigh), and the village is one of the locations at which the HBO television series, Game of Thrones was filmed.
Ballintoy is situated in the area covered by Causeway Coast Glens Council, formerly Moyle district council. Ballintoy beach is well sheltered, making it ideal for swimming.
Immersed in History
Enjoy the trip down to the small Ballintoy fishing harbor, which can be found less than a mile from the village and is steeped in Northern Ireland history. Access is via a steep winding road to the harbour which passes the white Ballintoy Parish Church standing proudly on the hill.
There is ample parking, but in the height of summer, you may have to search for a spot. Take the time out to sample homemade Irish fare in the picturesque and quaint Ballintoy Harbour Café, or simply enjoy some coffee with cake.
Ballintoy Harbour will take you on a trip back in time. Explore the rocks with your kids, relax while watching birds and boats go by, go walking along the cliff path, or get your feet wet at the water steps.
Birds, Orchids, and Butterflies
Located close to Portbradden hamlet, with access gained via a short walk along the coastal rocks, Whitepark Bay boasts a magical white sandy beach on a curve that is 3 miles long, with it its rocky west side bordered by massive limestone cliffs. The beach is well worth a visit.
The sand dunes and rolling green hills provide an impressive location for guests who visit the area and provide homes for fauna and wildlife. This beach is very popular for its swimming and surfing and has stunning views towards the Scottish Island of Islay and Rathlin Island. This whole area is also great for bike riding and walks.
This area is protected by the National Trust of Northern Ireland and it provides online information about the orchids, butterflies, birds, and wildlife of Whitepark Bay. ((((http://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/white-park-bay/wildlife/))))
One of the bird species found at Whitepark Bay is the Spring Fulmar, which patrols the cliffs while entertaining guests with their very distinctive cry. They only come to land during the breeding season and spend the rest of the year out at sea. They are related to the albatross and are identified easily by their stiff winged flight.
There are 9 different orchid species that can be found at White Park Bay.
17 Butterfly species will be seen fluttering from flower to flower during the butterfly season that lasts from April to September.
Help With Conservation Efforts
The National Trust uses members of the public and visitors to help record special bird species along this part of the coast. They see White Park Bay as a valuable conservation site for and there are several bird species that they are keen to record as some of them are Species of Conservation Concern. These included the meadow pipit, fulmar, and ringed plover. Others are even at greater risk and are classified as Priority species, including the song thrush, grasshopper warbler, skylark, and linnet.
One of the most relaxing locations along the entire Causeway coast must surely be Portbraddon close to Ballintoy. It is located on Whitepark Bay’s west side and Ballintoy Harbour is at its east end.
Many individuals from across the world and Northern Ireland have totally fallen in love with the outstanding natural beauty of this secluded and beautiful tiny hamlet and harbour that nestle under the cliffs.
Although the drive down to the harbor is windy and steep, it provides spectacular views of Whitepark Bay.
The gorgeous church at Portbraddon is believed to be Ireland’s smallest church.
As there is no parking, you won’t be able to stay too long, unless of course, you are fortunate enough to stay at a self catering seaside cottage.