If you travel by train, bus or car between Holywood and Bangor in County Down, you pass through the townland of Ballycultra, which stretches from the shore of Belfast Lough up into the Craigantlet hills.
The name is abbreviated to Cultra (pronounced cul-TRAW) everywhere, including this pub…..
…..and this sign for the North Down Coastal Path along Belfast Lough.
The Cultra section of the Coastal Path offers excellent bird-watching opportunities. I saw oystercatchers, common redshanks and turnstones there last year, and shared my photos on my Distant Drumlin blog in March 2014. I took the next photo of light-bellied Brent geese on the lough in April 2015.
According to the PLACENAMESNI website, the name Ballycultra comes from the Baile Chúl Trá meaning “townland of the back of the strand”. I guess the strand refers to the loughshore.