From Flint Stones to Surfers – the History ofPortrushPortrush was inhabitedsince at least 4,000 BC according to archaeologists, but modernPortrush has a lot more yabba-dabba-doo thesedays, drawing daytrippers to town with its selection of amusement arcades andsurf schools.
Yet there are some heritage sites that are well worthseeing, particularly DunluceCastle which is a short distance from the sea front. The ruins ofDunluce Castle are perched on a cliff at the edge of the sea, a dramaticlocation guaranteed to capture visitors’ imaginations. It dates back to the14th century and was the home of the MacDonnell clan until part of it fell intothe sea in 1639. A fire destroyed the rest in 1641.
Seaside PortrushWhiterocks beach is a perfect location for familieswhen the sun shines, but the surf schools are out and about in all weather.Portrush is billed as “the surfing capital ofNorthern Ireland” and there is no shortage of instructors and surf shops tohelp novices catch their first wave. Portrush isalso great for windsurfing and other water sports – you can even take a trip ona fishing vessel to see how the professionals do it.
Sports and Leisure Pursuits in PortrushSerious golf fans need look no further than the RoyalPortrush Golf Club, which hosted the British Open championship in1951 and has plans underway to upgrade it again. Should the committed golferget bored, there are two other courses in town. There are two bowling greens onthe seafront, and several tennis courts. Cyclists will enjoy the 22-mile tourthat goes from the Giant’s Causeway throughPortrush to Benone Strand. And for children there is the pirate-themedWaterworld pool, complete with a Pirate’s Cove, rope bridge, water pistols andscramble net.
Shopping in PortrushPortrush has shops tocater for all tastes, from edgy surfwear shops and holistic beauty salons toclassic womenswear, handmade jewellery and antiques. The White House departmentstore is a well-known landmark which has stood for more than a century andcontinues to sell its wares to modern customers.
Eating and Nightlife in PortrushPortrush has no shortageof restaurants – the town boasts a variety of cuisines including stone-bakedpizza and Italian food, modern Irish restaurants, traditional pub grub andseafood. Among the pubs and cafes you’ll find a range of offerings from thegreasy spoon serving an Ulster Fry with black and white pudding to espressobars with the latest blends.
Kelly’s nightclub is a draw for people from aroundNorthern Ireland and has regular spots with big name international DJs, andthere are lots of other modern bars and traditional Irish pubs to choose fromand rest those dancing feet.
Enjoy PortrushPortrush will liven upany holiday with a host of distractions from extravagant landscapes to adynamic nightlife. It’s also an excellent place to begin exploring NorthernIreland’s famous Causeway Coast, and take in the internationally-renownedGiant’s Causeway World Heritage site and the breathtaking Carrick-a-Rede ropebridge to find out exactly where they filmed Game of Thrones.
Golf, Beaches and Friendly People
Ride a horse along the varied coastal terrain that features sand dunes and limestone cliffs. Appreciate the views of distant headlands.
The Giant’s Causeway is one of Northern Ireland’s most iconic and most photographed beauty spots, instantly recognisable the world over. It is the only UNESCO World Heritage Site in all of Ireland, having earned this rare distinction back in 1986. Yet only through personally experiencing the many moods and overlooked facets of the wild north-east coast’s ancient volcanic bays, cliffs and beaches is it possible to appreciate their true splendour as wonders of the natural world.
A visit to Northern Ireland would not be complete without sampling some of the Irish whiskey produced in the country. Old Bushmills Distillery takes you back through time and lets you see first-hand how this well-known whiskey is hand-crafted and produced in small batches.