Tourist Attractions Beyond Belfast, Northern Ireland
Saint Patrick’s Trian Visitor Complex. Saint Patrick's Trian Visitor Complex is a City Centre attraction offering three excellent exhibitions: The Armagh Story, Saint Patrick's Testament and the Land of Lilliput. Since the coming of Saint Patrick, Armagh, known as Ard Macha has been steeped in religious history. Saint Patrick's Trian is the ideal place to start your tour to discover Armagh's history, architecture, famous people, fine churches, buildings and historic sites. Saint Patrick's Trian also offers tourist information, education, genealogical service, Bureau de Change and excellent conference facilities.
Exploris Aquarium. Exploris is Northern Ireland's Aquarium and Seal Sanctuary. Located in Portaferry, on the shores of the Marine Nature Reserve of Strangford Lough, the Aquarium presents the wonders of the Irish Sea through an enjoyable, interactive experience. Discovery pool demonstrations, run by experienced guides, give you the opportunity to interact with a variety of living marine animals. You can view how Exploris rehabilitates Northern Ireland's sick, injured or orphaned seals back to health in the seal sanctuary. Exploris provides an enjoyable and educational experience through changing marine exhibits, exhibitions and activities for kids of all ages. Visit www.exploris.org.uk.
Navan Centre and Fort. Navan Centre and Fort at Malone Lodge Hotel, Northern Ireland Navan Centre interprets one of Northern Ireland’s most important ancient monuments, Navan Fort - once the royal seat of the Kings of Ulster and the province’s ancient capital. Start your tour in the Vanished World of lost myths, travel into the Real World of archaeology and enter the Other World to hear the legends of the Ulster Cycle. Visit the Iron Age/Early Christian period dwelling and learn about that way of life through Living History interpretation. Walk the path of history to the great Ancient Seat of Kings, Navan Fort. Visit www.navancentre.com.
Saint Patrick Centre. The St. Patrick exhibition is an exciting 21st century interactive experience which tells the fascinating story of Northern Ireland’s Patron Saint. Through Patrick’s own words a light is shone on the arrival of Christianity in Northern Ireland and its development through his mission. Bold graphics, sculptures, video and audio techniques allow visitors to explore how Patrick’s legacy developed in early Christian times and reveals the fabulous artwork which was produced during this golden age. The centre also examines the major impact of many missionaries in dark-age Europe - a legacy which remains to this day. Visit www.saintpatrickcentre.com.
Castle Coole. A 1-hour drive from Belfast, Castle Coole is one of the finest neo-classical houses in Ireland. Built by architect James Wyatt, it has exceptionally fine interior decoration and furnishings. Take a guided tour that includes the 1821 state bedroom, the surrounding landscaped park, the coach house and a cup of tea. The hall in the heart of the castle is available for private events, and is a fabulous setting for Champagne receptions. Open April - September.
Carrick-a- Rede Rope Bridge. Carrick-a- Rede Rope Bridge at Malone Lodge Hotel, Northern Ireland Along the North Coast, Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge - one of Northern Ireland’s most popular attractions - is not for the faint hearted. After walking along the beautiful coastal path, you will find yourself confronted by a precarious rope bridge, which crosses a 24 meter deep and 18 meter wide chasm from the rocky cliffs to the tiny Carrick Island. Originally a link for fishermen to Carrick Island, the bridge is a test of bravery even for the most intrepid. There’s only one way back! http://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/main/w-vh/w-visits
Bushmills Distillery. Take a tour of the Old Bushmills Distillery, the world’s oldest licensed whiskey distillery, which has produced the finest Irish whiskey for over 400 years. Whiskey making at Bushmills draws on centuries-old distilling history, including the first licence to distil whiskey granted for the county of Antrim in 1608 by King James I. These skills and traditions live on at the Old Bushmills Distillery, and shine through every drop. Experience the craft of making Irish single malt, and discover the secrets of the special water from St. Columb’s Rill, the malted Irish barley, triple distillation in copper stills and ageing for long years in Oak Casks. The end product has to be sampled. Visit www.bushmills.com.