Today marks Winter Solstice, the shortest day of the year. With just 8 hours of sunshine- where will you go?

Take a stroll at the Giant's Causeway on the shortest day of the year_SHT1275

Brighten up the shortest day with National Trust

While Sunday 21December may bring the shortest day of the year, the National Trust is bringing you lots of bright ideas to fill your festive break with fun and adventure!

Sinead Kelly, National Trust said: “The National Trust’s North Coast places will be open throughout the holiday period, so why not take up the challenge of crossing the famous rope bridge to Carrick-a-Rede island and enjoy a truly cliff-top experience?”

The island until recently was an active salmon fishery, with an old fisherman’s bothy, old ropes, and nets still visible. The exhilarating coastal path offers stunning views of Rathlin Island, and on a clear day the Scottish Isles and Mull of Kintyre.

Sinead went on to say: “Combine this with a visit to the world-famous basalt columns of the Giant’s Causeway, Northern Ireland’s only World Heritage Site. A place that has inspired artists, scientists and all who visit it for generations. Stop off at the Giant’s Causeway Visitor Centre and take a tour of the site with the people who know it the best, our dedicated Visitor Experience Rangers. They are sure to entertain and inspire, retelling the myths and legends that surround this natural phenomenon.”

Sean McLaughlin, Manager of the Causeway Hotel added:  “After blowing away the cobwebs with some fresh Atlantic air, we have the perfect place to warm up and settle in by the fire. Visitors can enjoy fresh locally sourced produce in the restaurant whilst enjoying stunning views across the Atlantic. Favourites include homemade Causeway chowder served with wheaten bread. You may even want to stay over in one of the newly refurbished guest rooms.”

There are plenty of opportunities to walk off the festive frivolities with family and friends over the Christmas holidays. So why not start your New Year’s Resolution early? Wrap up warm and get out and about this festive period and enjoy some of the wonderful places that the conservation charity has to offer on the North Coast.

Blow away the cobwebs of the past year and celebrate the arrival of the new at some of Northern Ireland’s most special places, as the days start lengthening once again.

The Giant’s Causeway Visitor Centre is open from 9am to 5pm (closed 24, 25, 26 December) with tours available on the hour.

The Causeway Hotel is open every day excluding 25 December.

Carrick-a-Rede rope bridge is open from 9.30am to 3.30pm (closed 24, 25, 26 December).

Carrick-a Rede rope bridge

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