The New Giant’s Causeway Visitor Experience – Have you been yet?
It’s no surprise that the Giant’s Causeway is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a geological wonder, with over 40,000 interlocking basalt columns. One theory is that the Giant’s Causeway was formed by intense volcanic and geological activity and provides a glimpse into the Earth’s most ancient past and an epic 60 million year-old legacy to the cooling and shrinking of successive lava flows.
The Giant’s Causeway is steeped in myth and legend. Some say it was carved from the coast by the mighty giant, Finn McCool who left behind an ancient home full of folklore. Look out for clues of the existence of the mighty giant, Finn McCool – including Giant’s Boot, The Wishing Chair, The Camel, Giant’s Granny and The Organ. On a clear day, you might even catch a glimpse of Finn’s Scottish opponent, Benandonner’s homeland of Scotland.
The New Giant’s Causeway Visitor Centre
Rising and blending into the landscape, with walls of glass, basalt columns and a state of the art interior designed by award winning architects Heneghan-Peng, the Giant’s Causeway Visitor Centre is truly innovative. The energy efficient building boasts a number of exhibition areas and a grass roof with 360 degree views of the Causeway coastline. Explore the interactive spaces, watch Finn McCool on the big screen and unlock the secrets of this inspirational landscape.
Conservation is at the heart of the project and the new visitor facilities complement the surrounding landscape, ensuring the sustainable management of this important heritage asset. Innovative interpretation will help to enhance your experience and take you through a journey of discovery learning about the area’s history, geology, biodiversity and myths and legends. The new multi-media guide, is one of the most advanced audio and multi-media handsets available and will be offered to all visitors to the centre. It will provide high quality interpretation in a variety of languages as well as services for people with hearing and sight difficulties. This will ensure a unique visitor experience and perspective on the Giant’s Causeway.
The visitor experience includes:
• A new state of the art visitor centre featuring an illuminating exhibition showcasing the stories and the science behind the Giant's Causeway
• Innovative pocket size audio guide in a variety of languages
• A grab and go style café
• A new retail facility introducing new and exclusive local products
• Tourist Information - FREE
• Fully accessible toilets and a Changing Places facility for people with disabilities
Please note, the Tourist Information service at the centre is free to access.
Booking and Prices
Visitors wishing to avail of the fantastic new visitor experience can buy tickets in the following ways: pre purchase online at www.nationaltrust.org.uk/giantscauseway from the end of June, at the park and ride facility in Bushmills village (March - October), or upon entry to the visitor centre.
Ticket prices are £8.50 (adults), £4.25 (child), £21 (family) with discounts available for green travel and pre-purchasing online. Groups visits (15 people plus) can pre book by contacting (028) 2073 3419. National Trust members will enjoy free entry.
To further enhance the overall visitor experience, the new Giant’s Causeway Visitor Centre will operate extended opening hours during peak holiday periods, from 9am – 9pm.
2013 Centre opening hours
Jan: 9am - 5pm
Feb, Mar: 9am - 6pm
Apr, May, Jun: 9am - 7pm
Jul, Aug: 9am - 9pm
Sep: 9am - 7pm
Oct: 9am - 6pm
Nov, Dec: 9am - 5pm
Closed 24th, 25th, 26th Dec
There are four stunning trails at the Giant’s Causeway. Recently upgraded, all are colour coded and awash with breathtaking views of jagged cliffs and bays lashed by wind and waves. There’s a trail for every ability, from a pram friendly jaunt to a challenging coastal hike and in addition, a new accessible cliff top walk for families and people with disabilities. It might even be possible to glimpse Northern Ireland’s favourite giant, Finn McCool whilst walking around these new trails!
Places To Visit
The world famous Giant's Causeway, renowned for its polygonal columns of layered basalt is the only World Heritage Site in Northern Ireland and is a must see for visitors.