The most northern tip of Northern Ireland is one of the more scenic places we have visited from a photographic viewpoint. Part of that can be attributed to a visit from a photographer friend who made me get ‘out and about’ more than I normally would have, so thanks, Doug! This is also the place where the well-known Dark Hedges and the Giant’s Causeway are located. We visited each multiple times in different lighting conditions.
When you click on “Continue Reading” a slide show of ten photos will play at the TOP of this article.
However, our visit did not start out on a high note. Upon arrival and stepping out of the car at our lodging place for the week, we were greeted with a very strong smell of cow manure. This was no “I think I might smell some manure” smell, it was more like a “let’s get the heck out of here” smell. So we retreated into the very small cottage, only to find the toilet did not work. We tried to call the landlord after a discussion regarding how to dial since our phone had a chip from Italy and we were now in Northern Ireland, a different country code. Simple tasks can be difficult on the road. None of this mattered as no phone signal was available. So into town we drove to find a working phone. Our landlord, Clem, (really) was not all that sympathetic and advised me the toilet was working properly yesterday. I explained to him that fact did me little good today….. We had to flush using a bucket of water until the plumber could be scheduled. Since no more could be done regarding the plumbing, we tried to go to dinner. However, we could not eat at either of the two restaurants in town. One was not serving that night and the other was only serving guests who were staying at the hotel, so down the road we drove. The manure stench would come and go during the week, but overall, not a terrible place to stay.
(Photos in the slide show includes photographs of Dark Hedges, Giants Causeway and the Carrick-a-Rede Bridge)
Several times we visited the locally well-known Dark Hedges in different lighting conditions. This site consists of many 400-year-old beech trees lining a small country lane, which were planted by a wealthy family to impress their arriving guests. Their mansion is now the main clubhouse at the local golf course and the trees have become a major draw for tourists in the area. It is not easy to get photos free of people posing for photos, very early and late evening are the best times.
Giant’s Causeway is a National Park near Bushmills, where the whiskey is distilled. This geologic formation consists of over 40,000 pentagon shaped basalt columns formed from volcanic activity. This is a great playground for kids and photographers, scampering about the columns and watching the sunset.
Also nearby was the exciting Carrick-a-Rede rope bridge which was used by Atlantic salmon fishermen to get to the island where they strung their gill nets. They would cross the 60 foot span to the island by way of a single rope, hand over hand while carrying fish and equipment.