Even as an adult I find it hard to believe that Giant’s Causeway on the north coast of Northern Ireland is natural.
I just can’t get my head around it – it just looks too uniform to be made in nature, even though all scientific evidence tells me it is.
There’s no denying that it’s beautiful though and should be on most people’s must-visit locations in Britain, if not Europe. You can also add in to the fact that it’s a short drive outside of Belfast, one of the best cities in the world.
Unfortunately though, none of us can go there and visit at the moment. So step in the National Trust, who have created virtual tours of some of their sites, including Giant’s Causeway.
Legend had it that the columns were the remains of a causeway built by the Irish giant Finn MacCool. He was challenged by the Scottish giant Benandonner to build it so that they could meet and presumably fight to see who was the hardest.
There are a couple of endings to the story, one of which sees the Irish giant win the fight and the other see the Scottish giant run away scared just by seeing the size of MacCool. Both are complete rubbish, but nice nonetheless.
The columns are actually the result of a boring ancient volcanic fissure eruption, with the lava that burst through the Earth’s crust cooling and contracting much like when mud dries. As they cooled, the ‘cracks’ created columns, which then shifted down back into the ground by various degrees of depth due to the speed of the cooling.
I actually think I prefer the giant story – it’s easier to get my head around and would probably make a great Disney film. Regardless, it’s undeniable that the Causeway is beautiful and awe-inspiring, and even though it’s only a virtual tour, the National Trust’s Virtual Tours are all we have at the moment.
Click below to visit…