Beachfront Seafood and Favourite B&Bs in Portstewart

Harry's Shack, Portstewart, Northern Ireland (Image: Sharon McAuley)

Seafood restaurant Harry’s Shack has quickly become one of the most popular dining spots in the Northern Ireland town of Portstewart. (Image: Sharon McAuley)

A few quick tips for golfers travelling to Northern Ireland ahead of the 2019 Open Championship at Royal Portrush, the first hosted by the British province since 1951.

There are few things I like more than fresh-caught seafood—especially when it’s served in a beachfront restaurant not more than a solid five-iron shot from one of the world’s great links.

Harry’s Shack, in the lively Northern Ireland town of Portstewart, serves everything from pork belly bites to prawn tails (in shell) to the whole grilled catch of the day. The décor is informal and the wait staff young and exuberant. If it weren’t for the lilting Irish accents, you might think you’ve been suddenly transported to a surfside resto in California.

It’s the perfect relaxing end to a day spent playing Portstewart Golf Club, just off the beach to the rear of Harry’s, or Royal Portrush Golf Club, in the neighbouring town of Portrush. Both communities are bracing for an avalanche of visitors ahead of the 2019 Open Championship at Royal Portrush, the first Open hosted by the British province since Englishman Max Faulkner lifted the Claret Jug at this same course in 1951.

If you go, try to book a room as far in advance as you can in Portstewart, my favourite of the two towns. Two B&B’s I’ve stayed at and loved are Strand House and Saltwater House, both ideally located down the street from Portstewart’s clubhouse.

Also be sure to make time to explore the shops, bakeries and eateries on Portstewart’s charming waterfront main street. And an essential walk, should you find yourself there on one of Northern Ireland’s rare sunny days, is along the winding coastal path leading to three kilometres of glorious white-sand beach known as the Portstewart Strand.

Just be careful not to wear yourself out for your next round of golf.

 

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