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Evening summer sun at the Giant's Causeway, Co. Antrim, Northern Ireland
UK

Having grown up in Northern Ireland, the Giant’s Causeway was the place you’d always take visitors. Internationally recognised (a UNESCO World Heritage site), visually impressive, geologically distinctive, culturally neutral: even at the height of the Troubles when other places may’ve been off-limits , the Causeway was the tourist destination. Rightly so: it’s a wonderous and crazy-looking place, with hexagonal columns formed by basalt cooling rapidly. No wonder in the days before we had an understanding of volcanology the locals believed it was built by the giant Fionn mac Cumhaill; a much more romantic explanation.

Trouble is, it’s (justifiably) extremely popular, and so viewing it without hordes of sightseeing visitors is nigh on impossible, except in publicity photographs. Apart from when I photographed this; on a Friday night when there’s a World Cup match on, so most people are either glued to the telly or going out for the night. Result…

I don’t think I’ve ever seen the bay around the main causeway look as magical. The sea was calm, there was hardly a cloud in the sky, and the sun slowly dropped towards the horizon, painting the vista with increasingly saturated colours.

With so few people around we felt like we had the place to ourselves, for which I was incredibly appreciative. Such emptiness made it easier to understand the scale and beauty of the natural features. Truly magical.

Copyright: Joby catto
Type: Spherical
Resolution: 12868x6434
Uploaded: 31/01/2014
Updated: 28/03/2014
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Tags: sunset; sun; summer; unesco; causeway; tourism; beach delete coast; coastline; stone; attraction; irish; basalt; volcanic; columns; heritage; evening; national trust
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