Top 3 best waterfalls in County Antrim

Searching for a scenic route with the ultimate payoff? Then check out the top three best waterfalls in County Antrim.

Home of the famous nine glens, County Antrim is well-known for its picturesque landscape and hidden gems. From cliff walks to ocean views and fairy-tale woodland escapes to magical waterfalls, Antrim has it all.

A hit for people of all ages, examples of this gorgeous and highly photographic natural phenomenon are rife throughout the Emerald Isle, meaning visitors will be spoiled for choice.

So, whether in search of natural views or simply looking to snap a selfie somewhere different, a trip to one of these waterfalls is a perfect choice.

Read on to discover the top three best waterfalls in County Antrim.

3. Cranny Falls – scenic and suitable for all

Cranny Falls is one of the best waterfalls in County Antrim.
Credit: Instagram / @gillianwasson7

Cranny Falls is situated near the quaint seaside village of Carnlough, which lies along the Antrim coastline.

Home to one of Northern Ireland’s most scenic harbours, Carnlough is famed amongst locals for its stint doubling as ‘Braavos’ in HBO’s highly successful fantasy drama Game of Thrones.

The spectacular waterfall is the endpoint of a 2 km (1.2 miles) one-way trail along an old limestone railway track to the since-abandoned Gortin Quarry.

You need to visit Cranny Falls.
Credit: Instagram / @mattxhunter

This is suitable for all skill levels; those embarking on the walk can garner a sense of the site’s history from informational displays dotted along the way.

Undoubtedly one of the best waterfalls in County Antrim. Cranny Falls is reportedly the only known site for Wood Barley in Ireland – a small amount of which is located above the waterfall.

Facilities in the nearby village include toilets and a car park plus various accommodation and eateries. The site is also close to Glenarm Castle, Carnfunnock Country Park, and several sandy beaches.

Address: Larne, Ballymena BT44 0LJ

2. Glenoe Waterfall – a hidden gem

Gleno Waterfall is one of the best waterfalls in County Antrim.

Located near a small historic village of the same name, the Glenoe (sometimes Gleno) Waterfall is undoubtedly one of the top three best waterfalls and one of the best things to do in County Antrim. 

Part of the official Causeway Coastal Driving Route, Glenoe Waterfall invites visitors from all over to visit the site and take some stunning pictures.

Situated on land owned by The National Trust, this short and secluded one-mile walk consists of a bridge, river, and many steep steps. These steps carry visitors through the valley to great views of the main feature: a gorgeous 30 ft (9 m) waterfall.

Gleno Waterfall is a hidden gem.
Credit: Instagram / @mdevinpatterson

However, it should be noted that the ground can be uneven in parts. The terrain can also be slippery due to spray and remnants of running water.

Alongside being the perfect place to clear your head, it is also a popular choice for cold water swimming!

Onsite facilities include a small, free car park plus a picnic and BBQ area. There are also numerous attractions nearby, including Olderfleet Castle, Killylane Reservoir, and Clements Wood.

Address: Waterfall Rd, Gleno, Larne BT40 3LE

1. Glenariff Waterfall Walk – Queen of the Glens

Glenariff Waterfall is one of the best waterfalls in County Antrim.
Credit: Instagram / @the.empty.nester

Shaped by giant glaciers during the Ice Age, the valley of Glenariff (sometimes Glenariffe) is the largest and most frequented of the Antrim Glens.

Overseen by the Northern Ireland Forest Service, its forest park is a popular spot amongst locals and tourists alike.

Within the park’s 1,000 hectares of woodland, lakes, conservation areas, and outdoor recreational spaces, visitors will find the Glenariff Nature Reserve Waterfall Walk.

This scenic and photogenic site consists of native flora and fauna, streams, rocky gorges, and three waterfalls. Visitors can access these via a range of boardwalks, steep steps, and pathways cut into cliffs.

You need to visit Glenariff Waterfall.
Credit: Instagram / @mcgovern.marie

Split by the Inver and Glenariff Rivers, the park is home to several different species. You can spot Irish hares, red squirrels, and hen harriers.

Furthermore, the damp conditions produced by the waterfalls have enabled the growth of several rare plant species, including moss, fern, and liverworts.

The park also offers four main routes. Choose from the 1 km (0.6 miles) Viewpoint trail, 0.6 km (0.4 miles) Rainbow trail, 8.9 km (5.5 miles) Scenic trail, or the 3 km (1.9 miles) Waterfall Walk trail.

Glenariff tops our list of the best waterfalls in County Antrim.
Credit: Instagram / @rexlor2020

The Waterfall Walk trail allows visitors to witness three of the best waterfalls in County Antrim. This includes Glenariff’s main waterfall, which is said to be the largest and most picturesque of them all.

Onsite facilities include the Laragh Lodge restaurant, picnic tables, public toilets, and a car park. Other attractions nearby include the Old Bushmills Distillery, Giant’s Causeway, and the Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge.

Address: Glenariffe Road, Ballymena

That concludes our list of the top three best waterfalls in County Antrim. Which ones have you visited?

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