See the oldest site of human settlement in Ireland and stroll along the river in this charming town near the sea.
Coleraine is a large and well-connected modern town on the Bann River. It has a rich history and stands in the heart of a picturesque region near beaches and the iconic Giant’s Causeway. Explore the town center on foot for a sense of the local culture and interesting past.
Relax in the cafés that line the quaint streets of the town center. Gaze up at the golden sandstone façade of the Coleraine Town Hall, which holds an exhibition hall. Browse the stalls of the monthly Coleraine Specialty Market on the Diamond central square.
Walk south along the Bann River on the occasional dry and sunny summer days and reach Mountsandel Fort in its namesake forest. The landmark is considered Ireland’s oldest site of human settlement, occupied in 7600 B.C.
Northwest of town is the Mussenden Temple, a circular cliff-top structure with scenic views of the sea. Capture photos of the 18th-century Romanesque building. Enjoy a picnic atop the 120-foot-high (36-meter) cliffs and amble along the sheltered garden paths.
The building is part of the Downhill Demesne complex, which comprises a former private garden with such structures as Bishop’s Gate, the Black Glen and a mausoleum. Relax in the gorgeous surroundings of the Bog Garden and see the Dovecote and Icehouse. Among the highlights are Hezlett House and Downhill House.
Golf at the champion links Castlerock Golf Course and visit the adjacent Castlerock Beach.
The town is in the Causeway Coast and Glens borough in the northern part of Northern Ireland, about 55 miles (90 kilometers) northwest of Belfast and 30 miles (50 kilometers) east of Londonderry. Arrive at the Belfast International Airport or take a train to the Coleraine Railway Station near the town center.
Coleraine is a contemporary and cultured town surrounded by spectacular natural and historic landmarks.