General Beach Description
Ballycastle Beach is a popular tourist destination located on the Causeway Coastal Route on the Antrim Coast. It is approximately 1.2 kilometres in length and runs from the pier at Ballycastle Marina at the western end, to Pans Rock in the east. The beach is predominately comprised of sand with some shingle. It backs on to Ballycastle Golf Course for most of its length. There is a promenade at the western end. It is located about 5 minutes from the town centre.
There are no restrictions on swimming at this beach and a seasonal lifeguard service is provided by RNLI Beach Lifeguards. This beach attained the Seaside Award in 2020.
- Car parking
- Child friendly areas,
- Visitor Information Centre
- Seasonal RNLI Beach Lifeguards Service (July & August 11am - 7pm daily)
- Dogs are permitted (restrictions apply 1st June - 15th Sept)
- wheelchair access
- disabled toilets and disabled parking
Did you know?
The eastern end of Ballycastle Beach is part of Ballycastle Coalfield ASSI. Ballycastle Coalfield is the best exposure of a coalfield sequence in Ireland. It contains a series of Carboniferous sedimentary rocks (335-330 million years old) with contemporary lavas and younger Tertiary Igneous rocks (60 million years old). The sedimentary rocks were deposited in a shallow marine bay which gradually developed into a vegetated coastal swamp subject to periodic flooding by the sea. The vegetation was preserved as seams of coal.
Fossils that have been found include goniatites (shellfish), fish remains, giant clubmosses and arthropod insects. The Tertiary dykes have metamorphosed the carboniferous shales to produce porcellanite and a range of minerals. The site also contains evidence of early industrial activity: the coals and iron ores were mined between the 16th and 19th centuries. The underlying geology and the spoil heaps give rise to both base rich and acidic habitats, including wet grassland, base-rich flushes and maritime heath. Limited saltmarsh occurs on some of the beaches.