Giant’s Causeway rocks into world heritage sites list
The Giant’s Causeway, Northern Ireland’s famous World Heritage Site, has been ranked one of the most beautiful heritage sites in the world.
The natural wonder has been included at number six on a list of the 20 most beautiful UNESCO World Heritage Sites by internationally influential travel magazine, Condé Nast Traveler.
UNESCO has over 1,000 locations on its prestigious World Heritage list.
For centuries the Giant’s Causeway’s polygonal stones have inspired artists, stirred scientific debate and captured the imagination of all who see them.
Managed by the National Trust, last year the site welcomed more than 750,000 visitors from across the world to experience the famous basalt columns and to follow in the legendary footsteps of the giant, Finn McCool.
The studded beach of columns protruding from the coast and water were caused by a volcanic eruption 60 million years ago, although one local legend claims that the columns were carved by Finn McCool.
The story of the Causeway’s formation is told in the attraction’s state-of-the-art visitors’ centre, which is built with walls of glass and basalt columns to fit seamlessly into the landscape.
Inside the award-winning building, the latest interactive technology allows visitors to explore the fascinating geological history of the site and also hear the myths and legends around Finn McCool, who is said to have created the Causeway as a stepping stone to reach his enemy in Scotland.
The giant’s influence, and the locals’ love of a good story, is reflected in the names of a number of the Causeway’s most popular and unusual rock formations including The Giant’s Boot, The Wishing Chair, The Camel, Giant’s Granny and The Organ.
The Giant’s Causeway is part of the magnificent Causeway Coastal Route in Northern Ireland, which is regarded as an area of outstanding natural beauty and one of the world’s great road trips.
There are four colour-coded trails at the Giant’s Causeway, to suit walkers of every ability and families with young children. All afford breath-taking views of the spectacular north Antrim coastline.