1. Carrick-A-Rede Rope Bridge, County Antrim (@neil.anderson.photo)
One for all the thrill-seekers in life, the Carrick-A-Rede Rope Bridge in County Antrim is a must-visit attraction along the epic landscape and crashing waves of the Causeway Coastal Route, which winds its way from Belfast to the historic Walled City of Derry~Londonderry. Hanging over 30 metres above the turquoise waters of the North Channel, this rickety rope bridge has been around for over 250 years and was once considered the best place to fish for the salmon below. You’ll need a steady hand to capture the beauty from here!
2. Dunluce Castle, County Antrim
At the tip of the Antrim coast sits the sprawling Dunluce Castle, looming over the sea atop a dark basalt outcrop. Once home to the feuding McQuillan and MacDonnell clans, this is the quintessential medieval Irish castle. From rebellion to fire, mermaids to banshees, Dunluce has seen its fair share of drama. No wonder, then, that this storied pile is said to have inspired CS Lewis to create Narnia’s hallowed Cair Paravel. With the white chalk cliffs of Portrush sweeping away to the west, you could be forgiven for thinking you’d stepped back in time. But don’t get too close to the edge – local legend says the castle kitchen once collapsed into the sea, dragging seven cooks with it.
3. The Mourne Mountains, County Down
Set amongst winding trails in County Down, the Mourne Mountains richly deserve its Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty status! Stretching some 35km between the peaks, which were said to have provided inspiration again to young CS Lewis’ vision of Narnia, is the Mourne Wall. Take a hike, marvel at its majesty and remember how the Belfast author expected to see “a giant… raise his head over the next ridge”.
4. Stairway to Heaven, County Fermanagh
The name of this hidden gem just says it all. With your head grazing the clouds, discover jaw-dropping views of the rolling, peatland-covered Fermanagh landscape. Winding up Cuilcagh Mountain, the highest summit in the county, it’s not hard to see why this has become a social media star!
5. The Giant's Causeway, County Antrim
The 40,000 basalt columns of the Giant's Causeway – a UNESCO World Heritage Site – are one of Northern Ireland’s most instantly recognisable places. The story goes that the giant, Fionn mac Cumhaill, tore up chunks of the Antrim coastline as he made his way to pick a fight with Scottish big man Benandonner. Or, if you prefer the science, these stones were formed by a volcanic eruption 60 million years ago. Whichever you believe, your photo will be legendary!
6. Mussenden Temple, County Londonderry
Mussenden Temple is a domed treasure to be found along the Causeway Coastal Route – aka, Lonely Planet’s top pick for 2018. Hovering cliffside above Downhill Beach, Mussenden’s original 18th century design was based on the Temple of Vesta in Italy, and for a time was the private library of the Earl Bishop. Still engraved on its stones are the words, "Tis pleasant, safely to behold, from shore, the rolling ship and hear the tempest roar”. So, why not "behold, from the shore" these panoramic views yourself?