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The Giants Causeway One of Irelands greatest enigmas

A car trip to Ireland can bring you to the best places in the country without the pressure of commercialised tours. It also affords you the opportunity to see a place at your own leisure – soak up what it has to offer without worrying about schedules. One of the most famous landmarks in Ireland is thye Giant’s Causeway in Northern Ireland. It was recently declared a World Heritage Site. The name was taken from the legend of Finn MacCool and the beauty of the place has been drawing people from both all over the country – and from abroad too. North Antrim has always been known for its beauty, but the center of it all this magnificence is Giant’s Causeway itself. In fact, the Irish love to call it the 8th wonder of the world. The place can be best described as a promontory packed neatly with jagged columns of hexagonally-shaped rocks. These formations were created more than 6 million years ago from the flow of basaltic lava. The distinctive hexagon shapes were formed when the lava cooled – in much the same way that dried mud in a riverbed would crack into geometric shapes. The almost symmetrical patterns of these ancient formations would understandably be viewed as coming from an otherworldly source when viewed from the eyes of the ancient Irish and this has led to the rise of various legends that attempt to explain the existence of these natural wonders. One legend surrounds the Irish giant Finn MacCool who was said to have built the causeway in order to reach Scotland to battle another giant called Benandonner. But when he reached the place he found the giant sleeping and realized that Benandonner was so much bigger than himself so he turned back. Benandonner then saw the causeway when he woke up and proceeded to Ireland to fight Finn. Finn’s wife then decided to dress up her husband as a baby and when the Scottish giant arrived she said that Finn was away and that he be quiet because he will wake up the baby. Benandonner, upon seeing a baby that huge, inferred that Finn must be a really huge giant. He got afraid and ran back towards Scotland damaging the causeway in the process. All that remains of the causeway were the ends – the Giant’s Causeway in Ireland and similar formations on the Scottish island of Staffa.