Portrush, County Antrim
One of the top favourite Northern Ireland holiday destinations, Portrush is a small seaside resort in County Antrim.
Situated on a mile-long peninsula extending into the Atlantic Ocean on the North Coast of Ireland, it affords panoramic views over the ocean of the Causeway Coast towards Scotland and the Donegal hills.
Well known for its three sandy beaches, West Strand, East Strand and White Rocks, it also boasts the only golf club outside of Britain that has hosted the Open Championship – the Royal Portrush Golf Club.
A lively destination, Portrush has a wealth of restaurants and bars, hotels, a Waterworld swimming complex, a harbour, an amusement park where actor, James Nesbitt, once worked, and some of Northern Ireland’s most popular nightclubs.
It also hosts an annual air show at the beginning of September, as well as an RNLI raft race and beach party, also held annually.
Life and Legend
Portrush Whiterocks Beach was recently awarded the prestigious 2009 Blue Flag Award and is a favourite for locals and tourists alike.
The limestone cliffs of the White Rocks stretch from Curran Strand to Dunluce Castle. These soft, sedimentary rocks have been carved through centuries into a labyrinth of caves and arches. Shelagh’s Head, the Wishing Arch, Elephant Rock and the Lion’s Paw are headlands of distinguishable forms which rise out of the ocean. Under the road, there are cavernous caves, accessible only from the sea, home to seabirds and a hunting ground for hawks.
On the main coast road, you will find pull-in areas and a large car park where you can take in the incredible views of the headlands to the Giant’s Causeway and back to Portrush and Donegal. Along the beach, there are grassy knolls with sea views and ideal for picnics.
The beach attracts water sports enthusiasts as regular surfers and body boarders can be seen in the surf and there are many shops and services nearby that can organise the hire of such equipment.
There are many accommodation providers in the nearby area, ranging from caravans to luxury self-catering homes.
Car parking and toilet facilities are also located close to the beach.
Another popular seaside destination is Portrush East Strand Beach, particularly in summer months.
Backed by glorious sand dunes and the nearby Royal Portrush Golf Course, its golden sands are lined by dramatic cliffs that have been weatherworn over the centuries into a spectacle of caves waiting to be explored and superb views over the Skerries to the Scottish Islands.
Video produced by Ambient Light Productions