Local Borough Attractions
There are plenty of attractions and leisure facilities within the borough to keep you busy on any visit.
Ballymena is one of the major retail centres in the province with many big name high street shops supported by local independent retailers. If any of your group fancy some retail therapy a visit to The Tower Centre (www.towercentre.com) or The Fairhill Centre ( www.fairhill-shopping-centre.co.uk) is a must.
Situated two miles from Ballymena along the A42 is the village of Broughshane. Known as the ‘garden village of Ulster’, Broughshane has won numerous prizes for it’s floral displays and is well worth a visit.
Famous for its connection with St. Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland, who is supposed to have tended herds here during his time in Ireland. Access to the mountain is available all year round with directions signposted from the village of Broughshane
ECOS Millenium Environmental Centre
The ECOS centre, which is built on a 150-acre site adjacent to the Showgrounds complex, is a visitor centre and country park that includes educational tools teaching visitors about environmental studies. The park includes a number of walks and there is also a touring caravan site incorporated into the park. (www.ecoscentre.com)
There are plenty of amenities to suite all the family within the borough, for example:
Two golf courses, Ballymena Golf Club, 128 Raceview Road, Ballymena (TEL: (028) 25861207 & Galgorm Castle Golf and Country Club, Galgorm Road, Ballymena (www.Galgormcastle.com)
Raceview Karting – indoor karting arena, kid karts for children from 9 years old. (www.raceviewkarting.com)
Sportsbowl – ten-pin bowling, snooker and pool, indoor kiddies play area and restaurant (www.sportsbowl.com)
IMC Ballymena – 7-screen cinema featuring all the latest movie releases (www.imc-cinema.com)
Seven Towers Leisure Centre – indoor swimming pool and kids fun pool, including water slides, Trostan Avenue, Ballymena TEL: (028) 25641427
If you are staying a few days and wish to visit more of Northern Ireland, Ballymena is an ideal base for exploring the province.
Known as the 'Gateway to the Glens' it is a short journey from Ballymena into the beautiful scenery of the Glens of Antrim or enjoy a drive along the scenic A2 Coast Road from Larne to Ballycastle through the picturesque villages of Carnlough, Waterfoot, Cushendall and Cushendun.
The North Coast is only a thirty-mile drive away where you can visit the World famous Giants Causeway or sample the local whiskey at the Bushmills Distillery. The sandy beeches of Portrush make this seaside town a favourite destination for visitors.
Twenty-five miles to the South of Ballymena is the capital city, Belfast. Exciting developments over the passed decade like the Odyssey complex have transformed the capital into a vibrant, exciting city.
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