Day 195 White Park Bay, Northern Ireland

We woke in one of the most beautiful locations in the world.  I even managed to get away whilst the boys were all still sleeping for a run on the beach.  To get to the beach you have to walk through a large grassy area and past the local herd of cows.  The last couple of times we’d gone to the beach they weren’t on the paths but this morning they were blocking both of the paths which I needed to use to access the beach.  I had to detour to the other end of the beach to avoid the 23 cows.  I didn’t really want to come around a corner face-to-face with a cow.

Once on the beach I had it all to myself for an hour.  What did I see? Just a beautiful sandy beach speckled with smooth pebbles, seaweed and a lonely washed up jellyfish.

We started our day by heading into Ballycastle and found a carpark beside the esplanade.  There was a cool playground for the boys and seating for adults so we sat and enjoyed our picnic and walked down to the beach.  It was a pretty cold in the breeze particularly when the sun disappeared behind clouds. 

Along the beach was a statue with four flying swans; part of another Irish fairy tale that we had read in the little book I bought in Dublin. The story is the called the Children of Lir.  Four children are turned into swans by their evil step mother and are banished for 900 years.  For 300 years they are sent to the Sea of Moyle which amazingly was right near Ballycastle and when we were standing at Kinbane Castle we looked out to the Sea of Moyle.

The boys went off together on a journey of discovery whilst I went to one of the local cafes so I could use the internet to do some bookings. I grabbed one of the last tables at Cafe Boyle and ordered one of their 2 pound hot chocolates.  It was one of the best hot chocolates I have ever had and I enjoyed 2 hours of research.  Well, I say enjoyed but the airline booking system was giving me a headache as it took me 4 attempts with 3 different credit cards before I could book the flight I needed to book!

The boys journey took them to Kinbane Castle; a spectacularly located ruin on a headland.  Buses can’t drive down the road so the boys had the place to themselves.  When Steve picked me up in town we returned to the castle so I could have a look. Wow!

We drove to the tiny village of Port Bradden next and then returned to relax in the hostel.  We had a walk along the beach and searched for fossils and flints … don’t think we found anything of interest but we had fun.  What an amazing place to be and a great way to end the day.


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