A bed for the night in Northern Ireland

The location

On the harbour front in Portballintrae, a small village on Northern Ireland's north coast, 90 minutes' drive from Belfast. It is in an ideal location for visiting some of Northern Ireland's most notable attractions.


The view from the rooms at the front. Looking directly down at the harbour, you get to see the storms blowing in, the occasional boat being landed and a wide range of birdlife. Ask for a junior suite, where the view comes with a lounge opening on to a wide-angle bay window. The rooms at the back are just as smart but overlook Ballintrae's back gardens.

The comfort factor

This friendly hotel is modern and swish in a no-nonsense sort of way. The beds are comfortable and the furniture includes armchairs, smart tables and desks.

The bathroom

The junior suites have spa baths and walk-in power-jet showers. Superior rooms have whirlpool baths.

The food and drink

The hotel's Porthole restaurant, which has good views of the harbour, serves hearty portions of meat and fish. The wine list is wide-ranging.

The people

A mixture of well-to-do visitors from Dublin and Belfast, the occasional American and families.

The area

The extraordinary spectacle of the Giant's Causeway is around two miles away, reached by a gorgeous coastal path. The Bushmills distillery - home to the famous whiskey - is just one mile away.

The access

Children are welcome and there are two rooms designed for people with disabilities who require the assistance of a carer.

The damage

Standard doubles start at £110 per room; the suites cost £160 per room. There are deals involving longer stays and dinner.

The address

Bayview Hotel, Portballintrae, Co Antrim, Northern Ireland (028 207 34100; www.bayview hotelni.com).