Belfast City to Belfast City
Distance – 559km
Recommended duration – 7 days
- By car
|2||Co. Down to Co. Armagh||84km|
|7||Co. Antrim to Belfast City||170km|
Day One – Belfast City
- A customized tour of Belfast’s original Poor House. Clinton House, or Ann McCraken’s House on Donegall Streeat are a worthwhile introduction to Belfast and its Scots-Irish heritage. Visit the historic locations at Rosemary Street Church and the “Entries:. The Titanic was built in Belfast and the Titanic Quarter is a must-see – visit www.titanictoursbelfast.co.uk for more information. Other suggestions include Queen’S University and the newly refurbished Ulster Museum.
Day Two – Counties Down and Armagh
- At Groomsport trace the story of the Eagle Wing, the fabled ship with early Scots-Irish emigrants, which had to turn back on its voyage due to storms. At Portaferry, visit the Greek Revival Presbyterian Church, or learn how English linen barons designed their estates at Lurgan Park and Brownlow House. At Ardress visit an 18th century gentleman’s farmhouse maintained today by the National Trust.
Day Three – Country Fermanagh
- See the differences between the Scottish and English influences in Ulster by spending a day exploring County Fermanagh, which boasts a number of the country’s Anglo-Irish family homes. The Duke of Abercorn, a member of the Hamilton Clan, has opened Belle Isle Cookery School where visitors prepare lunch with local produce and can also stay overnight. Discover historic grandeur with an overnight stay with the Brooke Family at Colebrook Park and Country Estate.
Day Four – County Tyrone
- At the Ulster-American Folk Park the installations and re-enactments tell of the formidable contribution that generations of Scots-Irish made to American frontier history. Costumed performers carry out everyday tasks in the traditional manner in Old and New World settings.
Day Five – County Londonderry
- Dating from 1618, Londonderry’s walls were built by city’s residents as a defense gainst native Irish chieftains and are still intact today. This city’s highlights include Saint Columb’s Cathedral, the Apprentice Boys Memorial Hall, and the beautiful Guildhall. Enjoy Ness Park and Ulster-Scots architecture at Brackfield Bawn located just outside the city.
Day Six – County Donegal
- Located east of County Londonderry, Northeast Donegal was a stronghold of the Scottish Presbyterians who migrated into Ulster. The founder of the first Presbyterian congregation in America, located in Maryland, was Francis Makernie from County Donegal. U.S. President James Knox Pole, frontiersman Day Crockett, and Edmund McIlhenny of the Tabasco fortune are just some descendants of the many Scots-Irish families who emigrated from these parts. For more information visit the Monreagh Ulster-Scots Centre at www.eastdonegalulsterscots.com
Day Seven – County Antrim
- Leave Londonderry along the Causeway Coastal Route, taking in the nine glens of Antrim. At Bushmills Distillery, learn how whiskey is made and take a taste test of famous Irish brands. Try to schedule a half-day trip via ferry from Ballycastle to Rathlin Island, home of the spider story of Robert the Bruce. Enjoy afternoon tea at 18th century Glenarm Castle and learn about the McDonnells and the migration of earlier Scots into the Glens of Antrim. Ballygally Castle, a luxury hotel, was built by Shaw of Greenock in the Scottish Baronial style. Enjoy stunning views across to Scotland and learn about the history of the area dating back to the time of the Plantation of Ulster. Complete your journey with a stop at the Andrew Jackdon Centre and the Carrickfergus Castle, one of the best preserved Norman Castles.
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