Situated in the verdant region of Northern Ireland, the county of Antrim boasts a rich cultural heritage and stunning natural beauty. In the shadow of Slemish mountain, where the patron saint of Ireland, St. Patrick, is said to have tended sheep, Antrim offers a unique blend of historical charm, modern amenities, and rural tranquility.

In our area guide, we delve into the allure of Antrim, from the bustling markets of Ballymena to the picturesque Glens of Antrim, and provide practical information for prospective residents. This includes education, transport options, key landmarks, property prices, and more.

History of Antrim

Antrim is steeped in history reaching back millennia. The region was populated by the ancient Celts, whose influence is evident in the numerous hill forts and stone circles. Romans and Vikings also left their mark, but the most significant historical impact came from the Normans in the 12th century. Antrim later played a pivotal role in the Plantation of Ulifoards and the famed Battle of the Boyne.

Besides the historic conflicts, Antrim was known for its linen industry in the 18th and 19th centuries. Today, its history can be experienced through numerous preserved sites that tell the tales of its rich heritage.


Experience the Giant's Causeway, one of nature's truly awe-inspiring phenomena, formed by an ancient volcanic eruption. The Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge in Ballintoy is a thrilling site, linking the mainland to the tiny island of Carrickarede. Meanwhile, Belfast Castle, an architectural gem nestled within the Cave Hill Country Park, offers breathtaking views of the city and lough.

Landmarks we love

  • Dunluce Castle, Portrush: A medieval castle, dramatically perched on a cliff, Dunluce Castle is a photographer’s delight with its stunning views.
  • The Dark Hedges, Ballymoney: A beautiful avenue of Beech trees planted in the 18th century, providing a natural corridor and a photographer’s paradise.
  • Carrickfergus Castle, Carrickfergus: This Norman fortress still stands proud and offers a unique glimpse into medieval life.
  • Old Bushmills Distillery, Bushmills: As the world's oldest licensed whiskey distillery, visitors can revel in the history and process of whiskey-making.
  • Glens of Antrim, County Antrim: With breath-taking landscapes, these nine 'Glens' are ideal for walkers and photographers.

Top 10 things to do in Antrim

  • Visit the bustling St George’s Market in Belfast for a sensory experience of food, crafts, and live music.
  • Stroll through the stunning Antrim Castle Gardens packed with historic features and stunning flora.
  • Hike the Moyle Way – a long distance footpath offering unrivaled landscapes.
  • Explore Lough Neagh – a haven for wildlife and a popular spot for water sports enthusiasts.
  • Cycle the Lagan Valley Towpath – an inspiring, traffic-free cycle path.
  • Visit the historic Linenhall Library in Belfast, a treasured reservoir of Irish literature.
  • Go bird watching at the RSPB Rathlin Island reserve - home to Northern Ireland's largest seabird colony.
  • Stroll through the Crumlin Road Gaol - a symbol of Belfast’s history now a popular tourist attraction.
  • Discover the iconic Harland and Wolff Shipyard, where the Titanic was built.
  • Spend a day at The Ulster Museum for an eclectic display of art, history and natural sciences.

Our recommended areas to live in Antrim

  • Belfast: As Northern Ireland’s capital, Belfast has seen a resurgence in recent years. Known for its vibrant culture, shopping scene, and top schools, it’s a perfect destination for families and young professionals.
  • Ballymena: Offering a more rural lifestyle, Ballymena is a bustling market town with easy access to both city amenities and the countryside. Lavished with shops, eateries, and a highly-regarded grammar school, it’s ideal for families and individuals looking for tranquility.
  • Carrickfergus: With historic charm and a close-knit community, Carrickfergus boasts a stunning marina area, excellent schools, and the iconic medieval castle.
  • Antrim: Enjoying a rural setting, Antrim Town provides affordable properties with easy access to both Belfast and the International Airport.
  • Randalstown: Known for its classic Georgian architecture and small-town charm, Randalstown offers a range of property types and a friendly community spirit.

Best schools in Antrim

Education in Antrim includes a diverse mix of excellent public and independent schools. Antrim Grammar School and Ballymena Academy consistently rank highly for GCSE and A-level results. In Belfast, the Royal Belfast Academical Institution and Methodist College Belfast are revered for their rich traditions and academic prowess. St Oliver Plunkett's Nursery School in west Belfast is one of the outstanding nursery schools in Antrim county. Special mention also to Belfast Royal Academy for its impressive sports facilities, coupled with strong academic standards.

Transport links in Antrim

Antrim benefits from an efficient network of transport links. Belfast International Airport, located near Antrim Town, offers various domestic and international flights. Regular train services connect Antrim to Belfast and other major towns across Northern Ireland. The county is well-served by a network of roads, with the notable M2 motorway providing quick access to Belfast. Moreover, many picturesque cycle routes add to the commuting options. In Belfast, the Glider bus service facilitates cross-city travel. The ports of Larne and Belfast provide ferry services to Britain and beyond.

In conclusion, Antrim offers an exceptional living comfort for individuals, families, and professionals. The blend of rich history, thrilling landmarks, exciting culture, and close-knit communities create a unique charm. Add to this the excellent schools, efficient transport infrastructure, and the choice of urban or rural living, Antrim is indeed an attractive choice for those looking for a new place to call home.

Buy A Home

With thousands of homes for sale, find your RealMove today.

Buy A Home in Antrim

Rent A Home

With thousands of homes for Rent, find your RealMove today.

Rent A Home in Antrim

Create alerts and save properties & searches

We've created a new tool to help you easily find the areas that match your budget and needs.

Creat an Account


Whether you're looking to buy your dream home, rent your very first apartment or want home design inspiration, we have everything you’re looking for just one click away.

Latest property news

Everything you need to know about the housing market, explained by our experts.

Subscribe for Newsletter

We've created a new tool to help you easily find the areas that match your budget and needs.