The house is located in the Antrim Coast and Glens Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty
The picturesque Ballygally village with its sandy beach is only a few minutes drive away and is on the Causeway coastal route, making it popular with tourists. The beach is 1.2 km long. There are no restrictions on swimming and a seasonal lifeguard service is provided by RNLI Beach Lifeguards (July-August 11am-7pm). The 'Polar Bear of Ballygally' rock feature is a local attraction that can be seen on the Antrim coast road just south of the beach. The locals paint the rock yearly with a touch up of fresh paint to keep the bear looking his best!
Carnfunnock country park also close by on the coast road makes for a great, local, fun family day out as it's packed full of attractions and activities for all ages e.g. a maze, a putting green, golf, gardens, playgrounds, fitness and walking trails and a cafe. Larne town park is another lovely park close to Larne town centre. It has a fantastic winding path that leads down to the sea with amazing views looking out to Scotland, as well as public tennis courts (which are in good condition and free of charge) and a fantastic playpark.
For golf enthusiasts, the local Cairndhu Golf Club is one of Northern Ireland's premier venues providing a coastal headland course and also a warm welcome for members, visitors and golf societies alike. The club was host of the 2021 NI Open and the 2021 ISPS HANDA World Invitational Qualifier.
The Antrim coast around Ballygally is an important centre for coastal offshore rowing, with several clubs, including Cairndhu Rowing Club and Castle Rowing Club. Ballygally hosted the 2019 Irish Offshore Rowing Championships, and the local clubs have participated in the Ballygally Beach Bonanza, providing stand-up paddle boarding, sea kayaking and offshore rowing.
The local countryside, hills and mountains around Ballygally and nearby Cairncastle form part of the Antrim Hills Way and Ulster Way walking trails and offer plenty of scope for walking, from the casual stroll to the more serious hill climbing (https://walkni.com). Slightly further afield (approximately 40 minutes), is Ronan's Way in Glendun - a beautiful and accessible walk with different grades for different levels of fitness and experience.
This beautiful landscape and area was used for filming Game of Thrones and contains archaeological sites of interest such as the Linford Barrows on the Knockdhu Hill Trek and the Larne Standing Stone. For a dramatic coastal walk, make a visit to the Gobbins Cliff Path in Islandmagee (30 minutes drive from Ballygally). The Gobbins is a dramatic, two-mile-long cliff-face path which includes spectacular tubular and suspension bridges, a staircase, caves and tunnels carved through the rock. It is a fully accessible cliff-top path which provides breathtaking views of the rugged North Coast.
There are a number of magnificent waterfalls in the Antrim glens nearby that are well worth a visit such as Cranny Falls near Carnlough and Gleno Waterfalls. The latter is owned by the National Trust and is situated only a short stroll from its designated car park, making it very accessible. Slightly further away (40 minutes drive), Glenariff Forest Park is home to another three spectacular waterfalls which can be found by following marked trails. The park also provides visitors with an abundance of panoramic landscapes and peaceful riverside walks.
The town of Larne - only 10 minutes drive away and has an Asda superstore, a Tescos Express and many good cafes and restaurants, the details of which are provided in the house's local information folder.
The Antrim Coast Half Marathon - The IAAF certified P&O Antrim Coast Half marathon is the fastest half-marathon in Ireland, and one of the fastest courses in Europe. It takes place yearly at the end of August. The course starts at the beginning of the Antrim coast road, sweeps into Larne Harbour and through Larne town before returning onto the coast road. The turnaround point is Ballygally. Sir Mo Farah won the 2020 race and a new women's world record was achieved by Yalemzerf Yehualaw at this year's event on Sunday 29th August 2021.
Belfast - only 35 minutes drive away, a visit to Northern Ireland's capital city with all its attractions and shopping opportunities makes for a great day out on a rainy day.