Millisle is a village on the east coast of the Ards Peninsula – 3 miles from Donaghadee and 7 miles from Newtownards. It has a history of once being a fishing village; then a holiday area with a lots of caravan sites and rental homes. Nowdays there are a few caravan sites left and, like other areas on the peninsula, housing developments are increasing the population and Millisle is now considered a small town.
There are various suggestions as to how Millisle got its name. Two things are certain - there have been various mill’s here, and there is plenty of water hence Mill Isle. About one mile west of Millisle we have the Ballycopland Windmill the only fully functional windmill in Northern Ireland. See the History Section for more information.
The coastal area around Millisle is variable - ranging from long exposed stretches of sandy beaches to small sheltered inlets sheltered by rock formations. From April to October Brent Geese can be seen on the shoreline and Grey Seals can be spotted lying on the rocks. There is also a good variety of shore birds seen feeding daily at the waterline or resting on the rocks.
Beside the large car park on the Ballywalter Road is the only vehicle access to the Beach Park, which expands along the shoreline length of the village. Close by is a newly refurbished children’s play park and also a Trim Trail initially set up for adults to use for some fun exercise. Beside these facilities is the tranquil Village Community Garden created by members of the Millisle Community Association, which has seats, picnic tables and an area where disposable BBQ’s can be used.
Millisle was recently on RTE, check it out now at http://www.rte.ie/player/gb/show/10167842/