Built with sustainability at the forefront of design

Picture shows the Giants Causeway Visitor Centre and coast beyond
Published : 28 Nov 2016 Last update : 04 Nov 2021

The Giant’s Causeway has shaped the imagination and the storytelling of the Causeway Coast for centuries so what better way to welcome visitors to this iconic part of the world than to a building which sustainably stands the test of time. The striking, yet sympathetically designed Visitor Centre at the Giant's Causeway helps share this rich heritage of folklore and science of Northern Ireland's only UNESCO World Heritage site.

Who designed the Giant's Causeway Visitor Centre?

The Visitor Centre at the Giant's Causeway, which was designed by Irish firm Heneghan Peng Architects. Opened in July 2012, it was designed to blend with the landscape while also reflecting the towering basalt columns of the volcanically formed Giant's Causeway. The building has been ingeniously engineered with sustainability at the forefront of the design.

Construction of the new Visitor Centre in 2011
Construction of the Giant's Causeway Visitor Centre in progress in 2011
Construction of the new Visitor Centre in 2011

Did you know?

Almost 5km (3 miles) of pipe runs underneath the car park to provide the centre with ground source heat

1km (0.6 miles) of pipes, as wide as a meter in places are buried underground, drawing in air to cool the centre.

Water is collected from the green roof in an underground tank which is used for the toilets within the centre.

View from the side of the Giants Causeway Visitor Centre's sloping grass roof
Picture shows Giants Causeway Visitor Centre car park and Causeway School beyond
View from the side of the Giants Causeway Visitor Centre's sloping grass roof

How was the Giant's Causeway Visitor Centre constructed?

The materials used to build the enormous construction were sourced from a mix of local and recycled materials. The striking stone columns of the building were built using Kilrea basalt which was formed from the same lava flow that created the Causeway itself. Even more astonishingly, the entire build only took 18 months to erect and has been designed to last at least 100 years.

 

The Visitor Centre's striking stone columns were built using Kilrea basalt which was formed from the same lava flow that created the Causeway itself
The picture shows the entrance to the Giants Causeway Visitor Centre and Causeway Hotel in far distance
The Visitor Centre's striking stone columns were built using Kilrea basalt which was formed from the same lava flow that created the Causeway itself

Learn more

Narrated by the local actor and Game of Thrones star, Conleth Hill, hear all about the building by listening to an audio guide on a visit. Visits can be booked online from the What's On section of the Giant's Causeway website. 

Take a behind-the-scenes virtual tour to see some of the sustainable features of this award-winning building.

Upcoming events

Timed entry to Giant's Causeway (17 Jan - 23 Jan)

Mon 17 Jan 2022
10:00-16:00
Book your timed entry to visit Giant's Causeway.