Carnlough, at the foot of Glencloy, is notable for its connection to the Londonderry family, after whom the village's distinctive hotel, the Londonderry Arms, is named. Another distinctive building in the village is McAuley's Bridge Inn, its architecture apparently skewed.
In bygone times Carnlough, like other small villages in coastal locations, maintained a strong seafaring tradition. Limestone from the village quarries was exported on small schooners to Scotland, and the distinctive bridge across Carnlough High Street was built to facilitate a narrow gauge railway from the quarry to the harbour. The village maintains this seafaring tradition, as it is one of only a handful in Ireland to compete in the sport of coastal rowing or 'gig racing'. The biggest event in the local sporting calendar is the annual 'Round the Rock' challenge in May, when teams complete the gruelling return journey from Carnlough Harbour to the Black Rock on the far side of Carnlough Bay.
Today Carnlough remains a firm favourite with tourists who can retrace the steps of the old mineral railway to the beautiful Cranny Waterfalls and Gortin Glen Quarry, now a local nature reserve.
Carnlough also offers a habour facility for yachtsmen.