Carrick-A-Rede rope bridge is one of the many sightseeing locations in Northern Ireland. It is located not far from the Giants Causeway thus it is one of the popular locations to visit.
This rope bridge is located near Giant’s Causeway. It is about 8 miles (12 km) away. You need around 15 minutes to get from one location to the other by car. The only thing you should consider is that it is not a short visit. The bridge is located rather far away form a car park (please see the map below).
And if you are a fan of Games of Thrones you don’t want to skip this location. Although the bridge was not featured in the show, but the cliffs were.
Location of the Carrick-A-Rede rope bridge
Post code: BT S4 6LS
- Car park
- Tea room
- Lime Kiln
- Knocksoghey Sill
- Wooden Bridge
- Viewing platform
- Steep steps
- Steep steps
- Rope Bridge
- Carrick Island
- Sheep Island
- Limestone Quarry
- Causeway Coast Way
What does Carrick-A-Rede mean?
Carrick-A-Rede means the rock in the road. It refers to the sea route that migrating salmon fish make as they swim past the island.
Carrick-A-Rede connects the mainland to a small island. It is a 20 meter bridge over a 30 meter drop over beautiful blue water of Atlantic Ocean. It was used by salmon fishermen to get to the island.
Atlantic salmon has been fished here for more than 300 years. Up until 2002 when the last fish was caught. There’s not much fish here anymore. Thus the rope bridge is now a tourist attraction offering great views from the small island.
Things you need to know before your visit
- It is not a quick visit, as you might hope. The walk to the bridge is 1 km long
- There are uneven surfaces and steep steps along the way
- Only 8 people are allowed on a bridge at a time
- You are not allowed to stop, while you are crossing it
- The bridge is always closed in a bad weather. It will be closed if the winds are strong
The bridge is a rather long distance away from the car park. You would need about 30 minutes (or even more) to get to the bridge itself. The walk is long and strenuous and it can get slippery after the rain. But you will see amazing coastal scenery along the way. Although it might not be worth spending so much time to see this little bridge. If you don’t plan to cross it you can see it from one of the viewing points along the coast.
If you plan to hike along the coastline just to explore the area and enjoy the views without crossing the bridge you don’t need to buy a ticket. You only need a ticket to cross this bridge. Ticket prices are around 9 pounds. We personally didn’t think it was worth it to cross this tiny bridge to the small island as you can see it without actually crossing it.
But if you are a National Trust member or the price is included in your tour you should definitely do it. It is an interesting experience and the views are stunning. Unless you are afraid of heights than this is definitely not for you.
You can find more about the ticket prices here>> nationaltrust.org.uk
We would recommend to get there as early as possible to avoid long queues. The bridge is scary but short. You can cross it in just a few minutes. Just remember that the bridge is small and only several people are allowed on it at a time (only 8 people). Also you are not allowed to stop while crossing this bridge.
There are actually several different ways you can see the bridge. As we didn’t plan to cross the bridge the best option for us was to look at it from one of the viewing points. But this might not be the case for you. Below is the list of all the options you have and why you might choose one over the other.
How to save time when visiting Carrick-A-Rede bridge
If you don’t have all day to explore this beautiful location there are several ways you can see the bridge without wasting much of your time. You can come to the location early int he morning before it is even open just to see the bridge up close. Alternatively you can enjoy the views of the bridge from far away.
Coming close to the bridge without crossing it
If you want to see the bridge up close but want to avoid large crowds of people you can visit the bridge early in the morning. There are several benefits to it. First of all you will have the location all to yourself avoiding crowds and tourists. Also you can enjoy the sunrise over the beautiful Atlantic Ocean. And it is unforgettable.
Of course, you won’t be able to walk on the bridge as it will be closed. But this is a great way to see this gorgeous little bridge and to enjoy the location and the views.
Looking at the rope bridge from a distance
In case you are not an early bird but still want to save some time there is another way to see Carrick-A-Rede bridge. You can actually see it from one of the viewing locations along the coastline. This is a great way to see this gorgeous sightseeing. You will save tons of time as you don’t have to walk up close to it to see it (which saves you minimum of 30 minutes) and there are no tourists and no waiting lines.