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Welcome to Belfast

Welcome to Belfast, one of Ireland’s most exciting cities! Belfast grew up around its cottage industries. These industries were found in ‘quarters’. Today, there are still remnants of four quarters in Belfast – The Cathedral Quarter, with its trendy warehouse restaurants and traditional pubs. Here, the burgeoning arts and crafts scene hosts plenty of festivals throughout the year including the Out to Lunch festival in January, the Cathedral Quarter Arts Festival in April/May, the Open House Festival in June and Belsonic in August.

The famous Titanic Quarter is full of history, heritage and tradition. The entertaining Odyssey acts as the gateway to this Quarter and includes W5, the interactive Science Museum, alongside cinemas, ten-pin bowling, restaurants, bars and nightclubs, not forgetting the Arena itself, home to the Belfast Giants. From here various tours can be taken and of course the new Titanic Belfast building is an experience in itself where you can explore the shipyard, travel to the ocean depths and uncover the true legend of Titanic, in the city where it all began.  

Queen’s Quarter is the leafy area spread around Queen’s University in the south of the city and is the centre for culture and learning. Explore this area and find a treasure trove of eclectic shops, cafes, bars, galleries, live entertainment venues, the beautiful Botanic Gardens and the Ulster Museum. 

The Gaeltacht Quarter is found in the west of the city. It is the centre for Irish language and has a lively culture of music, debate and drama. This quarter also has great eateries and traditional pubs. The famous political murals and peace wall make this area part of the tourist trail for many visitors. If you like the great outdoors, make your way up Divis Mountain and discover a panorama of city and mountain views and well-designed walking trails.

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Things to See & Do

Things to Do

  • The Titanic Experience, Winner of the World's Leading Visitor Attraction (World Travel Awards, 2016) is a must see on your visit to Belfast. It is located in the heart of the city, right beside the historic Harland & Wolff Shipyard, site of this world-famous ship’s construction.

  • Black Taxi Tours are brought to you by drivers who have themselves lived through the tumultuous past of this now thriving city. You will be taken on a mural tour that includes east to west and north to south of the city taking in both sides of the community. The amazingly detailed murals depict the war efforts and the drivers will give you the history behind them whilst sharing their own experiences of living through the war years.

  • Crumlin Road Gaol dates back to 1845 and closed its doors as a working prison in 1996. The Gaol is now renovated and has opened as a visitor attraction. Guided tours can be taken where you can learn about the history of the site and you will see what prison life was like through the ages including the political segregation of republican and loyalist prisoners. Your guide will bring you to the underground tunnel that used to connect the gaol to the Courthouse and to other interesting areas including the ‘condemned man’s cell’.

  • Belfast City Hall, one of Belfast’s most iconic buildings, is the city’s civic building. It is located in Donegall Square, in the heart of the city centre. Free public tours are offered every day and last around an hour. A visitor exhibition can be found in the City Hall’s east wing which offers a journey from the city’s past to present. 16 separate rooms can be explored and the refurbished coffee shop offers lunch and refreshments. Also worth seeing are the beautifully maintained lawns surrounding the City Hall containing a wealth of memorials to the history, people and events associated with the City including the Titanic Memorial Gardens which contains a nine metre long plinth listing the names of the 1,512 people who perished on RMS Titanic.

  • Ulster Museum is Northern Ireland’s treasure house of the past and present. It is home to a rich collection of art, history and natural sciences and free to all visitors.

  • Antrim Castle Gardens are a historical gem. Walk into the past as you stroll through these magnificent 400 year old gardens. The gardens contain layer upon layer of design features and planting that has been added over the centuries. Exceptional features found here include the ancient Motte, the Large Parterre, the Yew Tree Pond and the Pleasure Gardens. The Garden Coffee Shop has plenty of treats to tempt you with and the Visitor Shop contains a unique rage of goods with a distinct garden focus.

  • Giant’s Causeway and Causeway Coastal Route – The Causeway Coastal Route is a designated scenic tourist drive around the coast of Northern Ireland between the cities of Belfast and Londonderry. The Giant’s Causeway is found on this route flanked by the wild North Atlantic Ocean and a landscape of dramatic cliffs. Visit the world-famous basalt columns shaped as a result of cooled lava from volcanic eruptions that took place over 65 million years ago. You can also take in the award-winning Visitor Centre and avail of the café and retail zone.

  • Carrick-A-Rede Rope Bridge (Ballintoy) – Once you have experienced the 30m high rope bridge that brings you over to Carrick-a-Rede Island (home to a single building – a fisherman’s cottage) enjoy the spectacular views back to the mainland and along the coastline.

  • Old Bushmills Distillery is the oldest working distillery in Ireland. It is found in the small village of Bushmills on the beautiful north coast of Antrim. Bushmills is the only distillery in Ireland to make triple-distilled single malt whiskey. During your guided tour you will see the copper potstills used to distil this special spirit. The tour will also include all the associated sights and smells, whiskey tastings, a specialist whiskey shop and a gift shop with exclusive Bushmills merchandise. Following your tour you will be offered a whiskey or a soft dring in the 1608 Bar and there is also a restaurant serving lunches and treats through the day.

  • Dunluce Castle, one of the most picturesque and romantic of Irish castles bears witness to a long and tumultuous history. It is situated on the dramatic coastal cliffs of north County Antrim and was first built around 1500. It is now an iconic ruin where visitors can explore the castle itself and also enjoy the breath-taking views.

• Carrickfergus Castle
• Botanic Gardens