Belfast Telegraph

Giants Causeway beats Buckingham Palace for TripAdvisor bookings

NI landmark is a bigger visitor attraction than Royal Family's London home

The Giant’s Causeway was the UK’s third most booked destination in TripAdvisor’s research
The Giant’s Causeway was the UK’s third most booked destination in TripAdvisor’s research
Allan Preston

By Allan Preston

The Giant's Causeway has been named as the third most booked visitor destination in the UK during 2019 by TripAdvisor.

Only the Tower of London and Stonehenge received more bookings, with the Co Antrim heritage site finishing ahead of the likes of famous tourist magnets such as Buckingham Palace and Edinburgh Castle.

TripAdvisor said the world's most booked attraction in 2019 was the Colosseum in Rome.

The research was compiled using analysis of the travel website's 250,000 bookable visitor excursions.

Out of nearly 11,000 reviews for the Causeway on the TripAdvisor site, there was an overall rating of 4.5 stars with 72% rating the experience as excellent.

One US tourist, Melissa from Colorado, proclaimed it to be "the most beautiful place in the world".

"You know how there are destinations that are touristy for seemingly no reason? This is not one of those places," she wrote.

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"I visited in November, and even in the less than ideal season, this place was mind- blowing. Although, of course, the basalt rock formations are the main attraction, honestly the cliff walks are what took my breath away.

"Lastly, I would just say the drive here is amazing - the icing on the cake."

Another visitor, Artemis from Michigan, said: "Worth the trip, but be ready for tourists.

"We visited in the middle of September and were surprised with how many tourists we encountered. There were about 200 people walking around on the pillars and this made it virtually impossible to get a picture free from people.

"I would definitely visit again and try to get here earlier to beat the crowds."

A spokesperson for Tourism NI said: "The Giant's Causeway is one of Northern Ireland's stand-out attractions, along with Titanic Belfast and the Ulster Museum.

"According to the latest figures from NISRA, one million people visited the Giant's Causeway in 2018, an increase of 3%.

"The Giant's Causeway is also listed as a key reason to visit Northern Ireland by 54% of out of state visitors."

TripAdvisor spokesperson Laurel Greatrix said: "Iconic and historic sites from around the world will always be popular destinations for travellers, but they're popular for a reason.

"These are some of the most historic and memorable sites in the world.

"Whether it's your first visit or your 50th, there are plenty of interesting ways to see these sites, like an underground tour of the Colosseum, a family treasure hunt at the Louvre, or even a prime view of the Pope's weekly address."

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