Tweety with umbrella and bowler hat in United Kingdom

United Kingdom

Giant causeway[Unesco][+]

In Northern Ireland, the Giant's Causeway is a place of both amazing geological phenomena and legends... A few dozen miles away, the bridge of Carrick-a-rede rope completes the visit : but not advisable for people suffering from vertigo.

Giant's causeway

Giant's causeway : basalt columns

Three causeways (little causeway, middle causeway and grand causeway) sink into the sea. They are composed of 37,000 basalt columns. These have been carved over millions of years by volcanic eruptions and glaciation followed by erosion. Most surprising are the hexagonal shapes of the columns and their evenness ! It has been the source of the legend of the giants.

According to the legend, the causeway linked Ireland to Scotland. The Irish giant Finn took the causeway to reach Scotland, but as the giant Benandonner who lived there was stronger than him, he preferred to retrace his steps. But the Scottish giant saw him and chased him to Ireland. Finn's wife had then the idea to dress up her husband as a baby and presented it to Benandonner telling him that his father would soon return from hunting. Seeing the greatness of the baby, Benandonner, afraid to face a giant taller than him, chose to flee, taking care to destroy the road to avoid being followed...

One thing feeds the legend : there is a geological phenomenon identical to Fingal's Cave on the Scottish island of Staffa.

On the middle causeway, the wishing chair would have been made for the giant Finn when he was a child. Wishes made here by looking at the sea are supposed to be granted.

One can have a stroll on the cliff along the coast and try to recognize many shapes carved by erosion.

Carrick-a-rede rope bridge

This is a bridge of fishermen, made with ropes and planks and suspended 25 m (80 feet) over the sea.

Rocks linked by the footbridge of Carrick-a-rede rope Bridge of Carrick-a-rede rope

More to see

The Antrim coast also offers beautiful views.

Antrim coast : from Carrick-a-rede rope side