Nestled high along the Antrim coastline, Dunluce Castle offers dramatic views and insight into the life and legends of old Irish clans. Explore ancient ruins, discover township remains, or descend into a hidden cave to experience the site that inspired CS Lewis’ Cair Paravel and served as a filming location for HBO’s Game of Thrones.
The cliffside Dunluce Castle features on the itinerary of many round-trip day tours from Belfast and Dublin. Combine it with a visit to the UNESCO-listed Giant’s Causeway, or take a Game of Thrones tour to discover the show’s many filming locations throughout Northern Ireland. If you have more time and a passion for the great outdoors, discover the ruins and the rest of the picturesque coastline on a comprehensive multi-day walking tour of the region.
Things to Know Before You Go
- This is a must for Game of Thrones fans, as well as anyone interested in Irish history and legends.
- The castle is perched on top of a cliff above the sea, so children should be kept away from the edge.
- Bring a raincoat and an umbrella, as the weather can be brisk and the ruins provide minimal protection.
- The site has limited wheelchair access.
How to Get There
The castle is best reached by road, with most tours offering round-trip transfer to the rural location. Otherwise, visitors can take a train to Portrush or Coleraine, then finish the journey by bus. There is some parking available on-site.
When to Get There
The castle is open daily. While autumn and winter tend to bring harsher weather, their clear days offer a stunning early sunset and atmospheric photo opportunities. Summer months bring longer opening hours and less exposure to winds and rain.
Ghosts of Dunluce Castle
With a curious history, including a burnt-out village and rumors of a kitchen full of staff that fell into the sea, Dunluce Castle has its fair share of ghost stories. A popular site with paranormal enthusiasts, the grounds are said to be haunted by a mysterious maiden who calls out on the winds for the love she lost at sea.