The world’s oldest legal distillery, Bushmills was first granted its whiskey-producing license back in 1608, though historical records suggest production began even earlier. Distillers used malted Irish barley, grains, and water from St. Columb’s Rill to produce their oak-aged Bushmills Original and their Black Bush blend.
Make your way to the Old Bushmills Distillery and explore the facility as part of a guided tour that concludes with a complimentary taste of Irish whiskey. Many organized day trips from Belfast stop at Bushmills, as well as other sites along the Antrim Coast, such as Giant’s Causeway, Carrick-a-Rede rope bridge, and Carrickfergus Castle. Some tours visit Game of Thrones filming locations, including Dunluce Castle. Longer Antrim Coast day tours from Dublin also stop at Bushmills.
Things to Know Before You Go
- A bar and gift shop are located at the Old Bushmills Distillery.
- Free Wi-Fi is available at the distillery.
- Children aged eight and older are welcome to join tours.
- Tours are not suitable for wheelchair users or visitors with any kind of mobility difficulty.
How to Get There
The Old Bushmills Distillery is located in the town of Bushmills in County Antrim, Northern Ireland. The quickest way to get there from Belfast is to drive along the M2 and A26, which will take about an hour and 10 minutes. Though longer, the Causeway Coastal Route is a more scenic journey. Visitors without access to a car would do best going as part of an organized tour.
When to Get There
The Old Bushmills Distillery is open year-round, except over the Christmas and New Year’s period and July 12. Tours are limited and subject to availability. During summer months, arrive early in the day to ensure a spot.
Exploring the Causeway Coastal Route
The Old Bushmills Distillery is just one of many attractions that lie along the 130-mile (209-kilometer) Coastal Causeway Route, which runs from Belfast to Derry (Londonderry). Other highlights of the route include Titanic Belfast; Giant’s Causeway, a UNESCO World Heritage Site; Carrick-a-Rede rope bridge; and the Norman-era Carrickfergus Castle, which overlooks Belfast Lough.