The limestone cliffs of the White Rocks ends abruptly against a dark basalt outcrop which is majestically crowned by Dunluce Castle and joined to the mainland by an arched walkway. Underneath lies the Mermaid’s Cave with its legend of a lost soldier taken to the deep by a beautiful mermaid, other stories tell of smugglers and Spanish treasure.
Dunluce Castle is one of our heritage gems, its outline provides an iconic view of this part of the Causeway Coastal Route. It is frequently quoted as being one of Ireland most romantic castle locations.
The castle has seen many additions to its original structure over the centuries, it fell into disrepair after the last resident, Randall McDonnell, the second Earl of Antrim moved to Ballymagarry House in the mid 1600s. In the 1745 Ballymagarry House was destroyed by fire and the seat of the Earl’s of Antrim moved to its present location at Glenarm Castle.
Close by is the ancient ruins of St. Cuthbert’s named after a Northumbrian monk, it is also the possible burying place of sailors and noblemen from the Spanish Armada. On a clear day you can look over an expanse of ocean from here to Donegal and round to Islay, it was within this vista that the tragedy of the emigrant ship the Exmouth took place in April, 1857, bound for Quebec, she spent three days in horrendous sea conditions before finally breaking up on rocks off Islay with the loss of 240 lives. — at Bushmills, Co. Antrim, Ireland.