Travels in Geology: Basalt cliffs and columns along Nothern Ireland's Causeway Coast Way

Like its neighbor to the south, Northern Ireland is renowned for its green vegetation, but the rocks that underlie this part of the Emerald Isle are also legendary. The Antrim Coast famously hosts a fantastic hike along the coast to one of the most striking examples of columnar basalt in the world, the Giant’s Causeway

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Between rocks and hard places

If you are interested in exploring Northern Ireland but are unsure about going it alone, the Geological Survey of Northern Ireland offers custom-guided landscape tours to any and all of Northern Ireland’s natural attractions, including the Causeway Coast, Mourne Mountains and Sperrin Mountains. Experienced guides will take you on half-day or all-day trips highlighting the region’s geology, history and folklore. The “Between Rocks and Hard Places” tours can be scheduled seven days a week, year-round, for groups of up to 29 people. For more information, email gsni@detini.gov.uk and see www.bgs.ac.uk/gsni/landscape.

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Mary Caperton Morton

Mary Caperton Morton

Morton (https://theblondecoyote.com/) is a freelance science and travel writer based in Big Sky, Mont., and an EARTH roving correspondent.  

Thursday, July 3, 2014 - 03:00

The legend of Finn Maccool's Causeway

A long time ago, when giants ruled the Earth, a massive Irishman named Finn MacCool was challenged to a fight by the Scottish giant Benandonner. Now, as everybody knows, giants can’t swim, so MacCool, an expert mason and not one to back down from a fight, built a walkway of hexagonal stones across the North Channel to the coast of Scotland so the two behemoths could meet.

Full content for EARTH is available to subscribers. If you would like to gain access to the full version of this article, as well as all EARTH content, please subscribe today.

If you are connecting using a Library (IP-based) Subscription, please access full issues of the magazine through our Library Access portal.

Mary Caperton Morton

Mary Caperton Morton

Morton (https://theblondecoyote.com/) is a freelance science and travel writer based in Big Sky, Mont., and an EARTH roving correspondent.  

Thursday, July 3, 2014 - 03:00

Getting there and getting around the Causeway Coast

To visit the Causeway Coast, fly into Dublin or Belfast and rent a car or take a bus to Ballycastle, Bushmills or Portstewart. During the summer tourism season, public buses run on a regular schedule up and down the coast. Accommodations are available in most of the small towns, ranging from high-end hotel rooms in Portstewart to quaint bed-and-breakfasts to budget hostels. More information on the Causeway Coast Kayak Association’s Port Moon Bothy hut can be found at: www.canoeni.com/canoe-trails/north-coast-sea-kayak-trail/access-point/po....

Full content for EARTH is available to subscribers. If you would like to gain access to the full version of this article, as well as all EARTH content, please subscribe today.

If you are connecting using a Library (IP-based) Subscription, please access full issues of the magazine through our Library Access portal.

Mary Caperton Morton

Mary Caperton Morton

Morton (https://theblondecoyote.com/) is a freelance science and travel writer based in Big Sky, Mont., and an EARTH roving correspondent.  

Thursday, July 3, 2014 - 03:00

Mary Caperton Morton

Mary Caperton Morton

Morton (https://theblondecoyote.com/) is a freelance science and travel writer based in Big Sky, Mont., and an EARTH roving correspondent.  

Thursday, July 3, 2014 - 03:00

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