Carrick-a-Rede coastal walk

Walking trail

Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge is currently closed. The coastal path is open for walkers but all facilities including car park and toilets remain closed at this time. Trace the line of coast over windswept grasslands and winding rocky paths to Carrick-a-Rede rope bridge. For those brave enough to cross the bridge, you get a bird’s-eye view of the clear green water and ancient caverns far below – if you dare to look down!

An aerial view of Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge


Route map for Carrick-a-Rede coastal walk


Harbour road, Ballintoy (A) or Larrybane & Carrick-a-Rede (1)


Step 1 assumes that you are beginning your walk from the car park at the Carrick-a-Rede and Larrybane site. For highlights of the longer route starting at Harbour Road, Ballintoy, and marked on the map A-C, jump to steps 7,8 & 9 before reading 1 thru 6.

Read more
Image shows view of reception hut, disused lime kiln and Larrybane


Beyond the reception hut, there is only one road leading to the Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge (roughly eastward). On your left will the wild Atlantic Ocean, and to the right, fields of coastal farmland. PLEASE NOTE: You will need to purchase tickets at the reception hut in order to cross the rope bridge (although there is no charge to park and walk down to the bridge's entrance).

Read more
Carrick a rede coastal walk 2 of 6 image


At this point along the path, you'll come to the top of many steps cut into the steep cliff-side. There are a couple of benches to rest along this section of the route - it can be challenging, depending on your ability. Once you have made your way down all of the steps, you will see a gate within an archway, manned by a National Trust ranger. The ranger will check your tickets and grant access through the gate, leading to the Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge.

Read more
Carrick a rede coastal walk 3 of 6 image


Descend the metal staircase and take your first tentative teps across this unique bridge (Many are surprised to learn that it moves ever-so- slightly!) Views of the stunning coastline are to each side and straight ahead as you step off the bridge and on to Carrick-a-Rede Island - the 'rock in the road' where fisherman came to catch migrating salmon.

Read more
A view of Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge from the water


Once you cross the Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge, you are on Carrick-a-Rede Island. Take time to admire the views and do a spot of bird watching. The most important feature of the island is the fisherman's cottage. On select weekends throughout the year the cottage is open to the public. Check the events on our website.

Salmon fisherman's cottage


Exit the bridge and follow the looping trail leading to the bottom of the steps you descended earlier. You can now follow the familiar track back to the car-park.

Cross back to the mainland on the rope bridge


Carrick a rede coastal walk A


Carrick a rede coastal walk B


Carrick a rede coastal walk C


Harbour road, Ballintoy (A) or Larrybane & Carrick-a-Rede (1)

You made it

Following this trail on mobile or tablet? Share your experience.

Carrick-a-Rede coastal walk


Formal path, hard core gravel surfaces and grass surface. Uneven in places; single track in places. Grass might become muddy after rain.  A section of steps cut into cliffside means a moderately steep descent just before the ropebridge. A steep steel staircase leads to the rope bridge itself. 
Please be aware of unfenced cliff edges, high winds and step ascents and descents. 
Carrick-a-Rede coastal walk

Contact us

Telephone: 028 2073 1855


Carrick-a-Rede coastal walk

How to get here

119a Whitepark Rd, Ballycastle, BT54 6LS
By road

The Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge is located on the B15 White Park road. The closest village is Ballintoy (1 mile / 1.6km). It is 2 miles (3.2km) from Ballycastle and 16 miles (26km)  from Coleraine and the nearest bus depot. 

Parking at Carrick-a-Rede is free of charge, but allocated on a first-come first-served basis. We strongly recommend arriving on foot or bicycle particularly during peak season.

Regular train and bus services travel to the north coast from Belfast and Londonderry and Coleraine is the closest train and bus depot. Always check services in advance (reduced bus services in winter). See Translink for more information.

Carrick-a-Rede coastal walk

Facilities and access

  • External public toilets
  • Weighbridge tea-room
  • Car & coach parking