Giant’s Causeway – Northern Ireland

So far, my Ireland travels with my sister in May 2019 took me to Dublin where I once lived for a summer in college and I studied at Trinity College Library. (read about it here). We also visited the last resting place of St. Patrick at Down Cathedral in County Down.  Our travels also took us to Belfast, a vibrant city now but a city I didn’t dare travel to back in those dangerous days due to the “Trouble”.  And an interesting stop in the town of Carnlough was the subject of the previous blog.

But now we are traveling to Giant’s Causeway which is located in County Antrim along the coast of Northern Ireland. To get there we took a 3 mile (4.8 km) bus ride on a winding, narrow two-lane road northeast from Bushmills.

View of the coastline as you approach the causeway.

The Giant’s Causeway is a large area made up of about 40,000 basalt columns  along the sea coast on the edge of County Antrim in Northern Ireland.  These basalt columns were the result of intense volcanic activity around 50-60 million years ago.

Giants Causeway Columns
Geologic Studies of Giant’s Causeway and other similar formations have contributed to the development of earth sciences.

The name, Giant’s Causeway, comes from an old legend of a giant named Finn MacCool who used the blocks as stepping stones to walk across the sea to Scotland where he would challenge his Scottish rival.  It makes sense that people might have believed a giant had built the causeway because the large stones look like an interlocking walkway similar to what is manufactured today in bricks.

The basalt columns are worn flat and appear to be hexagonal bricks.

The geologic features at the causeway are impressive but there are similar column formations at Devil’s tower in USA and elsewhere.

Giants Causeway Columns
Volcanic activity from 50 million years ago caused the unusual formation of basalt columns in Giant’s Causeway.

The Causeway is a World Heritage Site since 1986. The stone in the following photo commemorates the World Heritage Designation.  The site is owned and managed by the National Trust.

Giants Causeway is designated as a World Heritage Site in County Antrim, Northern Ireland. It is owned by the National Trust.

The Giant’s Causeway is the most popular destination in Northern Ireland and access is still free. Tourists are allowed to walk on the basalt columns and take as many selfies as they can possibly take.  I would highly recommend a visit to this impressive place. It’s worth making a trip to the coast to see it.

Some take selfies. Other’s just take photos or take in the spectacular view. (My sister, Louise, is in white jacket.)
The author and photographer at the Giant’s Causeway. (Photo by Louise Brodnitz)
Louise at Giant’s Causeway!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Check back to my site and read the previous posts mentioned earlier in this blog.

Thanks for visiting my site. Look for the next blog of my Northern Ireland Adventure to Derry, also known as Londonderry.

Thanks to Louise Brodnitz for some of the photos contained in this blogpost.