The above picture is of Mill Street taken during the Heart of the Glens Festival held in the first week of August each year.
What to do at Ballymacdoe Cottage?
What to do at Ballymacdoe Cottage?
- 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.
- 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: contact Mr T O'Neill Tel: 028 2177 2009 25 Mills Street, Cushendall. 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.
- 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: 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
- 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 £90. 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.
- 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.
- Restaurants: 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. Not sure on quality. For tea coffee and a fry visit Arthurs Tea & Coffee Warehouse in Shore Street. The Glens Hotel.
- 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 Rory) 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 Glens Hotel on the Coast Road is good for breakfast lunch and dinner.
- Glens of Antrim Medical Centre: Glens Of Antrim Medical Centre 2 Gortaclee Road 028 2177 1411 http://www.glensofantrimmedicalcentre.co.uk/index.aspx.
- 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, fruit & veg shop, pharmacist, cloth shop, crafts shop, Mary D’s Hairdresser and barbers (very good), McAlister’s Hard ware shop, Celtic Crafts, Charity shop, Northern Bank, The Pepper Mill carry out, Archie Kinney butchers, Half Door Chip Shop, Spar Grocer Shop, Mace Grocer Shop, Nursing Home, WineFlair near the cottage at Dalriada Ave.
- Red By Boats Ltd see www.redbayboats.com/ 02821771331. Charter our Stormforce Explorer-X 11m Cabin RIB “Integrity”. Available
- 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
- 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
- Watertop Open Farm: Great place for children to enjoy 188 Cushendall Rd Ballypatrick, Ballycastle BT54 6RN 028 2076 2576
- Places to visit: Glenarriffe Water Falls, Bushmills Whiskey Distillery at 2 Distillery Road Bushmills, County Antrim BT57 8XH 028 2073 3218, Giants Causeway, Carrick-a-Rede is a famous rope bridge near Ballintoy in County Antrim, Cushendun Village, Whitepark Bay, Carrickfergus Castle, Rathlin Island ferry from Ballycastle, Dunluce Castle, Kinbane Castle.
- Next village going south is Waterfoot: A good fish and chip shop is Stevies Take Out. Adjacent to Stevies is O’Boyles restaurant 02821772378. Bars in the village are ‘The Mariners and The Saffron’. There is a Chinese restaurant open daily 4.30 to midnight 02821771700. A good beach and a excellent childrens play ground.
- 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.
- 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 028 21771105. 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/
- 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.
- 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.
- Cushendall Golf Club http://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).
- 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.
- 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.