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You’re spoilt for choice when you’re booking a flight to Carrickfergus. Not only does this laidback seaside town offer easy access to the spectacular Antrim coast, but the cosmopolitan pleasures of Belfast are also close by. Also, Belfast and its surrounding area is served by two major airports with regular flights to and from the mainland UK.
Both modern, well-appointed airports offer a variety of options to speed you on toward your destination. George Best Belfast City Airport is around 11 miles from Carrickfergus by road or rail, while Belfast international Airport is 16 miles away by road. The availability of both airports gives you the opportunity to find the cheapest flight, so you may be able to save some money.
Situated west of Belfast near Lough Neagh, Belfast International Airport offers domestic flights from an impressive list of domestic hubs, the most popular being Liverpool, London Gatwick and London Stansted, followed by Glasgow, Edinburgh, London Luton, Bristol, Newcastle, Manchester and Birmingham.
There are also plenty of scheduled flights available to George Best Belfast City Airport, within the city boundary on Belfast Lough, which serves no less than 21 other UK airports.
If you choose a flight to Belfast International, your option is to take a bus or coach to Belfast, then transfer to bus or rail for your onward journey up the coast. Alternatively, it is possible to get a taxi 16 miles direct to Carrickfergus. But perhaps the easiest and best option is to arrange a rental car, which will get you to your destination with the minimum fuss and also give you the freedom to explore the Causeway Coast Way, Belfast and Lough Neagh from your base.
Rental cars are also bookable in advance at George Best Belfast City Airport, leaving a straightforward journey on the coastal A2 through Belfast (where it magically becomes the M3 for a stretch) and on to Carrickfergus. The additional choice here is provided by the Northern Ireland Railways station at the airport, which links through to Carrickfergus at the very end of the northern suburban line.
The delights of a seaside town such as Carrickfergus really are best appreciated in the warmer months, especially if you are booking a flight with a young family. However, the grandeur of the Causeway Coast Way and all its natural attractions ensure that there’s a year-round demand for flights, so that visitors may enjoy the sombre moods and atmosphere of the coastal scenery.
With the heart of Northern Ireland’s capital city only 11 miles away down the A2, there’s absolutely no calendar restriction on staying in Carrickfergus and dipping into cosmopolitan Belfast. Festivals and events occur throughout the year in the realms of theatre and music, literature and sports. And in Northern Ireland, the restaurants and pubs are always something special.