This is a list of interesting places to visit, things to do, places to eat and some general information about the Glens. So please read it carefully as it will help you plan your holiday. On arrival please ask Triona our very helpful house keeper more questions about what you plan to do. Triona lives in the village and will be aware of other events taking place.

Find out about events

When you first arrive at the cottage check out the events that will be taking place in the village during the week of your stay. To do this visit Kearney’s butchers shop at Mill Street. In the window of the shop events are advertised. Also ask the butcher for more details. Visit the Cushendall development office at the top end of Mill street they will have more information. In addition visit the hardware shop at Shore Street they also have adds in their window.

Playgrounds

There are three play grounds for children in the village. At the far side of the beach which is at the end of Shore Road, Hill street (Ballybrack Road) and beside the Hurling pitch.

Cushendall Golf Club Restaurant & Bar

The golf club has a great restaurant and bar. You do not have to be a member to drink or eat there or watch a sporting event on TV. Children are welcome. The quality of the food is superb and the cost is reasonable. The restaurant has a fabulous aspect situated overlooking red bay at the foot of Lurig Mountain. Just press the busser at the front door and head upstairs to the bar. Opening times    The bar opens every day from 12 noon until 11pm. Catering:  Our resident caters George and Para Craig offer an excellent and comprehensive menu to accommodate all tastes. Monday Tuesday Wednesday- Closed. Thursday – 12:30pm – 3:00pm and 6:00pm – 9pm (Bar Food and A La Carte) Friday – 12:30pm – 3:00pm and 6:00pm – 9pm (Bar Food and A La Carte) Saturday – 12:30pm – 3:00pm and 6:00pm – 9pm (Bar Food and A La Carte) Sunday – 12:30pm – 3:30pm (Lunch) and 4:30pm – 8:30pm (Bar Food and A La Carte) For bookings Telephone: 02821771318 / 07825908464. Visitors Welcome most major credit cards welcome.

Cushendall Sailing and Boating Club

There are weekly sailing courses for children and adults for the months of July and August. Needs to be booked on line prior to the starting week. Safe thrilling challenging week of excellent sailing tuition, in spectacular surroundings of Red Bay. Costs about £150. Duration 10am to 4pm each day from Mon to Fri. Need: wet suit, sailing boots and buoyancy aid. Find out more at www.csbc.co.uk/. The sailing club has events at the weekend during summer.

Hurling

The owner of the butchers shop Mr Kearney is heavily involved in hurling so you could ask him where you could see a hurling match. Could vary as there are several clubs within driving distance. The local club Ruari Og (Young Roger) is situated on the edge of the village on the right hand side on the road on the way to Waterfoot. Hurling is played from April to Sept. www.ruairiog.com. The hurley pitch is at Pairc Mhuire on the coast road going south.

The Village facilities

A library, St Mary’s Catholic Church, Layd Church of Ireland, Cushendall Presbyterian church, tourist office, development group, village tea rooms, McAlister’s Estate Agent, Golden Fry Chinese’s take out, pharmacist, crafts shop, Hairdresser and barbers (very good), McAlister’s Hard ware shop, Celtic Crafts, Northern bank ATM at Mace Shop in Shore Street, The Pepper Mill carry out, Archie Kinney butchers, Chip Shop, Spar Grocer Shop with ATM and Post Office, Nursing Home, WineFlair and Charity shop near the cottage at Dalriada Ave.

Ardclinis Outdoor Adventure

lots of things to do for children and adults find out at:  http://www.ardclinis.com/index.html. High Street Cushendall 0282171340

Watertop Open Farm

Great place for children to enjoy 188 Cushendall Rd  Ballypatrick, Ballycastle BT54 6RN 028 2076 2576

Next village going south is Waterfoot

A good fish and chip shop is Stevies Take Out. Bars in the village are ‘The Mariners and The Saffron’. A good beach and a excellent childrens play ground.

Newtown Crommelin

The Skerry Inn a good traditional music pub. Call this number to check for events 028 2175 8669.

Traditional Irish Music

Glens of Antrim Comhaltas Margaret Graham Cushendall Antrim. The Glens of Antrim Comhaltas branch is based in Cushendall area and promotes the playing of traditional music, song and dance by all age groups in the local community. The branch is affiliated to the Antrim County Board, the Ulster Council of CCE and the national organisation which is based in Dublin. Brief History The branch was formed in 1986 and named the Cushendall branch since at that time there was a Glens of Antrim branch in Carnlough. The name was changed to “Glinnte Aontroma” in 1999.The branch works closely with the Glens Traditions Group who organise weekly music classes. The branch organises sessions every Sunday (summer excluded) in the Old School House for musicians, of all ability levels, all ages and any instrument. There is also a weekly sessions on Friday nights in Joe McCollams Pub. Also, several times a year we run ‘Session & Ceili in the local Boat Club. These nights are always very enjoyable with the Christmas night being ‘special’. For information http://comhaltas.ie/locations/detail/glensofantrim/

Glens Cycling Club

Sunday Morning Cycles Glens Cycling Club holds regular Sunday cycles throughout the year. All cycles start at Glens Hotel, Cushendall. Meet at 08.55 for 09.00 departures. All abilities of road riders welcome. Appropriate lighting and High Viz Gear essential.

Turnly's Tower

Turnly’s Tower or Curfew Tower. It’s the unusual looking tower at the village centre.
1809; a truly remarkable romantic building, providing at once the pivot and focus for the central crossing of the town, and built by Francis Turnly, the East India Company nabob, of Drumnasole and Richmond Lodge, Holywood. “Though eccentric, and perhaps demented, he erected extraordinary improvements in the buildings and roads on his property.” “The tower was the great object of Mr. Turnly’s thoughts; among his papers were instructions given to Dan McBride, an army pensioner, whom he appointed its guard. It was always to be provisioned for a year; it was to have a permanent ‘garrison of one man’, who was not to leave it night or day; it was to be armed with one musket, a bayonet, a case of pistols, and a pike, thirteen feet long, having a cross of wood or iron on its handle, so that it could not be pulled through the hole guarding the doorways.” It was erected “as a place of confinement for idlers and rioters”. When this Hibernian ornamental hermit retired, he was replaced in due course by a Mr Stewart, who was in the navy in the First World War and had a wooden leg, despite which he was an enthusiastic tree climber. He brought up a large family in the Tower, rang the curfew bell religiously. The traces of this fortified past are still to be found in the windowless dungeon, the massively heavy entrance door, ‘murder holes’ below the oriel windows, and an old well at the back door. Niches in the walls beside the upper level windows almost certainly housed heavy shutters for the windows, and a curfew bell has been reinstated on the parapet (the old one was missing, and the present one formerly graced a London fire station). A new lead roof was put on, floors were replaced, the old narrow steep staircase repaired, stonework repointed and repaired; and a new kitchen extension was added at the rear using stone salvaged from former outbuildings, contained within the walled garden and built into the rising hillside to minimise its impact. The Tower is 20 feet square, tapered, and rises four storeys to a height of 40 feet, topped by modest battlements; on each of its four faces there are projecting windows, with a murder-hole in the base of the lowest. It is built of rich red sandstone rubble, one wall being slate-hung. In the base of the east wall is inset a modest fountain capped by Mr Turnly’s initials. The doorway is narrow and round headed; the door itself is most medieval, sheathed in iron with knobs on it. Boyle, in 1835, wrote “It is not at all ornamental in its structure and is said to have been built after the model of some Chinese tower”. To a modern eye it appears entirely Romantic and Western European.

LIR Restaurant

LIR Restaurant is in Cushendall Golf Club. Visitors are welcome.
Opening Hours for July & August
Monday:Closed
Tuesday: 11am – 4pm
Wednesday: 11am – 4pm & 5pm – 8pm
Thursday: 11am – 4pm & 5pm – 9pm **Supper Club every Thursday served between 5-9pm, 3 courses only £12, menu changes every week
Friday: 11am – 4pm & 5pm – 9pm **Friday Supper Club £15 (same menu as Thursday)
Saturday: 11am – 4pm & 5pm – 9pm
Sunday: 1pm – 8pm
Visitors are always welcome. Please be advised that opening hours are subject to change depending on bookings / functions. Booking for evening menu is always advisable to avoid disappointment.
For bookings please telephone 028 21771318 during opening hours.

Giants Causeway

Legend of ‘Finn MacCool and the Giant’s Causeway’

Ireland is full of stories and Finn McCool’s is one of the best.

Our great Irish Giant, Finn MacCool, had some fearsome enemies in Scotland just across The Moyle Sea. One day Finn was so angry, and determined to get at them, that he built a whole causeway from Ulster across the sea to Scotland. He built it of unusual six-sided cobblestones, so they would fit neatly together like a honeycomb, and they made a very pretty pavement indeed!

One day he shouted a challenge to the Scottish giant Benandonner, The Red Man, to cross the causeway and fight him. But as soon as he saw the Scot getting closer and closer on the causeway, he realised Benandonner was much, much bigger than he had imagined! Finn skidaddled back home to the Fort-of-Allen in County Kildare, and told his wife he’d picked a fight but had thought better of it now.

Finn heard the stamping feet of Benandonner from Kilcock, and when those feet got to Robertstown, Finn had to stuff five pounds of moss into each ear. Red Man’s spear was as tall and thick as a Round-Tower, and he used it to knock on the door of the Fort-of-Allen. Finn would not answer the door, so his wife shoved him in the great bath with a couple of sheets over him.

Finn’s wife, Oonagh, thought quickly. She opened the door to Benandonner saying,
“Sure it’s a pity but Finn is away hunting deer in County Kerry. Would you like to come in anyway and wait? I’ll show you into the Great Hall to sit down after your journey.”
Oonagh invited Red Man to look around the room, and showed him what she said were some of Finn’s possessions.

“Would you like to put your spear down? Just there next to Finn’s” – It was a huge fir tree with a pointed stone at the top.
“Over there is Finn’s shield.” – It was a block of building-oak as big as four chariot-wheels.
“Finn’s late for his meal. Will you eat it if I cook his favourite?”

Oonagh cooked a cake of griddle-bread – baked with the iron griddle pressed inside it. Red Man bit it hungrily, and broke three front teeth. The meat was a strip of hard fat nailed to a block of red timber; two back teeth cracked. He was given a five-gallon bucket of honey-beer to drink.
“Would you like to say hello to the baby? Wait! – I’ll have to feed her first!”

Oonagh threw a loaf of bread to the huge baby in the bath-cradle and, peeping out from a huge sheet-like dress and bonnet was Finn MacCool himself, contentedly sucking his thumb. Benandonner said he wasn’t much good with babies. The honey-beer made him feel woozy, and he asked to go outside to clear his head.

Oonagh showed Red Man out, where the gardens were scattered about with boulders as tall as the giant.
“Finn and his friends play catch with these rocks. Finn practises by throwing one over the Fort, then running round to catch it before it falls.”

Of course Red Man tried, but it was so heavy he could only just lift it above his head before dropping it. The blow only ricked his neck – luckily the Scotsman’s head was very hard. But it was also full of good sense. He thanked Oonagh for her hospitality and said he would wait no longer, but return to Scotland before the tide came in.

Finn leapt from the cradle, thanked Oonagh for her shrewdness, and chased Benandonner out of Ireland. Passing Portadown, County Antrim, Finn scooped a huge clod of earth out of the ground to fling at the retreating Scot. The hole filled up with water and became the biggest Lough in Ireland – Lough Neagh! The clod he flung missed its target and landed in the middle of the Irish Sea – it became The Isle of Man!!

Fishing

Limerick Point About 200 metres from the cottage is a small pier to fish from but most people fish off the rocks to the left.  This place gets busy in winter so best to get down early.  There is a reef about 150 metres offshore so best not to over cast.  This location is very good for codling in winter to lugworm and crab baits will account for some flounder as well. Salmon Rock, Cushendun There’s a small car park with a gravel path leading along coast.  Follow it until you come to a section of shingle beach. Cross this to the right and you will find some high rocks – an ideal platform.  This is salmon rock and for the record it is to the left of the small beach. In winter codling, flounder and whiting will fall to lugworm. In summer the occasional plaice can be taken but there are plenty of flounder. Layd Church.  Layd church is on the coast road from Cusendall to Cushendun.  It is accessed from the sign posted car park for the old church you have to follow the path to the shore (10 min walk). You can fish anywhere of the rocks using rough ground tactics, with the mark good for cod in winter alongside conger and dogfish, with good wrasse available in the summer. Straid Fishery 0289303721 for fly fishing lessons. Fishing the Dun, Dall & Glenariff Rivers: Picturesque and charming, the Dun is the biggest of the Glens of Antrim rivers. Born on the upper slopes if dramatic Glendunn the river winds its way down to the Irish Sea at Cushendun where the sea trout fishing is excellent. A spate river the Dun nevertheless features good holding pools in the bottom reaches. Tidal at the town, the Dun produces great sport especially on an evening tide. Wild brown trout is abundant here and a three-pounder was caught recently. Salmon runs appear from August to October. The Dall and Glenariff are smaller but offer excellent sea trout fishing in a number of holding pools. Local fishing methods include worming, spinning and fly. Further information: Cottage wood is the name of the playpark at hill street. Species: Brown Trout, Sea Trout and Salmon Season:  1st March – 31st October Methods: All legal methods. Limits:  10 inch for Trout. Salmon: 2 fish bag limit per day. Licence: Fishery Conservancy Board Game Licence Permit:  Glens Anglers Permit. Permit Outlets:  O’Neill’s Country Sports, 25 Mills Street, Cushendall. Tel: 028 2177 2009.

Cushendall Golf Club

Is a nine hole links golf course. Great little course. To play go to the small hut at the start of the course. The attendant will explain when you can play and take fees. If he is not in attendance ask the bar man in the club house. You will need clubs and golf shoes. Tel 028 2177 1318. www.cushendallgolfclub.com

Adult visitor green fees: Weekday £15, Weekend £20, Bank Holiday £20,
Weekly Ticket £50, Monday-Friday only, Monthly Ticket £100 Monday-Friday
Juvenile visitor Green Fees: Weekday £5, Weekend – Not available,Bank Holiday – Not available, Weekly Ticket £15 Monthly Ticket £40 (Monday-Friday only).

Walking

There is a great walk from the cottage to Old Layd Church. From the cottage walk back up the cul-de-sac Dalriada Gardens turn left at Dalriada Avenue walking towards the sea there is a lane on the left takes you down to the beach. Walk to the far side of the beach and just keep walking. You will come a across another stony beach then a path. Follow this path it will lead to steps and another path. Follow coast line along path you will arrive at the church. You can take the road way back or follow the same path. Another good walk is up the Lurig. It requires boots and a good level of fitness. Opposite the Spar shop is the lane between the nursing home and a house. It is steep continue on this lane maybe a mile you will come to a road at the foot of Lurig. If you feel brave and are prepared with good boots make your way across the fields. You will meet zig zag path going up the hill, eventually it disappears and you have to climb up a steep grassy slope. When you overcome this slope you are near the top. Be careful on the way down. Every year on the second Saturday of August there is a race called the Lurig Run. From the small tower in the village to the top of Lurig and back to the tower.  There are other marked trails ask at the Tourist office it is situated at the end of Mill street in the village. They are very helpful.

Village Bars & Restaurants

There are three bars in the village: J. McCollan’s (locally known as Jonny Joe’s), The Central, and the Lurig. Joe’s is a comfortable home bar, good for traditional Irish music particularly on Sunday evening. With rooms like you are in mother’s home are heated with coal or turf fire and a range, very comfortable, TV & crisps absent. The Central has more locals in it again a good place for a quiet drink. Has a good TV shows matches. The Lurig has more of a younger group. At weekend bands play. It’s the Hurley bar.

Harry’s in Mill Street is a first rate restaurant. Quality of food excellent worth a visit. Upstairs at Joe’s is another restaurant recently changed management. Quality great. For breakfast visit Wee Joes in Shore Street. The Glens Hotel closed.

Glens of Antrim Medical Centre

Glens Of Antrim Medical Centre 2 Gortaclee Road 028 2177 1411

Red Bay Boats

Red By Boats Ltd see www.redbayboats.com/ 02821771331. Charter our Stormforce Explorer-X 11m Cabin RIB “Integrity”. Available

Deep Sea Fishing

Deep Sea Fishing out of Carnlough all equipment provided contact: Billy McCelland Causeway Fisher 07956586432 takes up to 10 people. Also Hamish Currie of Predator Charters at 9 Bellisk Drive Cushendall 0282177 1828

Cushendun

Great beach good parking. Theresa’s tea rooms for snacks lunches & afternoon teas. Good for Sunday dinner.  Also Mary McBride’s bar serves food 12.30 to 3pm and 5 to 8pm.

Places to visit

Glenariff Water Falls 9 miles 18 minutes in car. Bushmills Whiskey Distillery at 2 Distillery Road Bushmills 28 miles 46 minutes drive, tel 028 2073 3218, Giants Causeway 30 miles 48 minutes drive, Carrick-a-Rede is a famous rope bridge near Ballintoy 21 miles 35 minutes drive, Cushendun Village 5 miles 13 minutes drive, Whitemark Bay 23 miles 42 minutes drive, Carrickfergus Castle 35 miles 57 minutes drive, Rathlin Island ferry from Ballycastle 16 miles to Ballycastle 28 minutes drive ferry from Ballycastle to Rathlin, Dunce Castle 31 miles 52 minutes drive, Kinbane Castle. Glenarm Castle 14 miles 28 minutes drive. The Dark Hedges 17 miles 33 minutes drive. Titanic Belfast 48 miles 1hour and 5 minutes drive’.

Cushendun

Great beach good parking. Theresa’s tea rooms for snacks lunches & afternoon teas. Good for Sunday dinner.  Also Mary McBride’s bar serves food 12.30 to 3pm and 5 to 8pm.

Sheans Horse Farm

Sheans Horse Farm 38 Coolkeeran Road, Armoy, tel 077 5932 0434 Heritage and Historical Centre. The townland of Sheans is located close to the village of Armoy, adjacent to the Glens of Antrim on the famous North Coast of County Antrim. This area is steeped in history and heritage and the facility is based at the most extensive off road horse riding centre on Ireland’s north coast. The 400 acre McKinley family farm in the hills of north Antrim is located at the site of the battle of Aura which was fought between the Irish clans of McDonnell’s, McQuillans and O’Neill’s in 1583. Sheans Horse Farm offers top quality trekking and hacking on miles of off-road tracks that wind up into the beautiful North Antrim hills with panoramic views over 5 counties including stunning views of Lough Foyle, the Sperrin Mountains, Inishowen, Malin Head and to the counties of Tyrone and Fermanagh. The historical and heritage centres presentation offers excellent insights into the history of the area, the lives of the Irish clans, chieftains and the story of the great chieftain Sorely Boy McDonnell prior to the flight of the Earls in 1607. The traditional art of turf cutting is demonstrated out at the old turf banks on the hills above the farm and visitors are given the opportunity to participate in this, while taking in the dramatic views across Ulster. The story telling of the myths and legends of Ulster makes Sheans Horse farm the key centre for recounting the folklore and ancient tales of the area.

Ossian's Grave

2nd turning left off the Main Cushendall/Ballymoney Road about two miles from Cushendall, a megalithic court cairn on a hillside in Lubitavish townland, near the Glenaan River. Although dating from the Stone Age, it is traditionally believed to be the burial place of Ossian, the Celtic warrior poet.

Ballyeamon Barn

Every Saturday evening at 8pm Liz Weir, story teller of the Glens, hosts an evening of: music, story telling, poetry and craic at Ballyeamon Barn. Ballyeamon Barn is at 127 Ballyeamon Road, Cushendall BT44 0QP. Top of the Glen, travel up the road opposite the Spar Shop it is the white washed building walls with red doors and window frames. Tea and coffee is available. If you can make a contribution by for example telling a story it is much appreciated.

Game of Throne Locations

Cushendun

At Cushendun walk around the apartments on your right go as far as you can note the path follow it. You will find the cave where Melisandre (aka the red woman played by Carice van Houten) gives birth to the shadow creature.
Season 2 Episode 4 Garden of The Bones.

Carnlough

The stoney steps leading down to the sea where Ayra crawled up after being stabbed by the troublesome Waif.

The Dark Hedges

Kingroad for Thrones second season. This is the path where Ayra, Gentry and Hot Pie started their journey north on the back of a cart. The tree are haunted by the Grey Lady a lost spirit.
Season 2 Episode 1. The North Remembers.

Ballintoy Beach

From the Irish ‘Baile an Tuaigh’ meaning the northern downland, is a tiny fishing village that is Iron Island’s landmarks. It is Lordsport Harbour in season two.

Cushendall Beach

Walking time 5 minutes.

Legend of ‘The Children of Lir’ Cushendall Beach ‘Red Bay and the Sea Of Moyle’.

Many years ago in ancient Ireland lived a King and ruler of sea called Lir. He had a beautiful wife, called Eva, who gave him four children – eldest son Aodh, a daughter called Fionnula and twin boys, Fiachra and Conn. When children were young, their mother Eva died. Lir and children were very sad, and King wanted a new mother for his young sons and daughter, so he married Eva’s sister Aoife who, it was said, possessed magical powers.

Aoife loved children and Lir at first, but soon she became very jealous of time that King spent with Aodh, Fionnula, Fiachra and Conn. She wanted to have all of his attention for herself. One day, she took children to swim in a lake while sun was hot in sky. When they got there and children took to water, Aoife used her powers to cast a spell over children, which would turn them all into beautiful swans.

She knew that if she killed children, their ghosts would haunt her forever, so instead she cast this spell, forcing them to live as swans for 900 years; three hundred on Lake Derravaragh, three hundred on Straits of Moyle, and three hundred more on Isle of Inish Glora. The spell would only be broken when children heard ringing of a bell, and arrival of St Patrick in Ireland.

But Aoife’s spell had not taken away children’s voices, and so it was that these four beautiful swans could sing beautiful songs, and were able to tell their father what had happened to them. Lir, who had been searching for his children, came down to lake and saw Fionnuala, now a swan, who told him of spell cast on them by Aoife. Enraged, he banished Aoife into mist, and she was never seen again.

Although saddened by his children’s fate, Lir remained a good father, and spent his days faithfully by lake listening to their singing. Their three hundred years on Lake Derravaragh were filled with joy, but at end of this first part of their spell, children had to say goodbye to their father forever. They travelled to the sea of Moyle, where they spent three hundred years enduring fierce storms, and spent much time separated from each other. But they survived these three hundred years, and eventually traveled, together again, to fulfil final stage of their spell, on a small saltwater lake on Isle of Inish Glora.

The King by now had passed, and of his once glorious castle nothing but ruins remained. One day, they heard distant ringing of a bell – one of first Christian bells in all of Ireland – and swans followed sound, knowing that end of their spell was near. They followed bells to house of a holy man called Caomhog, who cared for them for last years of their fate.

One day though, disaster struck again, when a man appeared at house dressed in armor, saying he was King of Connacht, and he had come for now legendary and mystical swans with beautiful singing voices. He threatened to tear down and ruin Caomhog’s house if swans did not come with him, but just as he was laying his hands on them, bell tolled again, and mist of lake came and enveloped swans, turning them back into children they were nine hundred years before. The frightened King of Connacht fled immediately, and children in their human form started to age rapidly. Caomhog knew that they soon would die, so he quickly christened them before their human bodies passed away, so that their legend and their names could live on forever, for these were Children of Lir.