See what it takes to truly say you’ve been

Small city with a big heart

Whether you think you really know Belfast or you’ve never been before, prepare to be surprised and entranced. From hilltop heights to street market floors see the city from a different angle. Swap taxi rides for black cab tours and meet the people that give this cosmopolitan city its unique color and flavor.

An epic Irish breakfast.

Start as you mean to go on

Arguably the best thing about Belfast is how walkable it is. But you’ll need fuel before you start exploring. What better way to start your day than with a hearty Irish breakfast at the Harlem Café on Bedford Street? Locally known for its elegant antique décor with a diverse range of lovingly prepared dishes, Harlem nestles next to the historic Ulster Hall in the heart of Belfast’s city center.

Next up, head for the shimmering Titanic Belfast Visitor experience. Where you’ll discover the world’s largest and most authentic Titanic attraction with 9 galleries that’ll immerse you in the ship’s amazing story from realizing the dream to the terrible tragedy. Another attraction steeped in history is St. George’s Market, which started in 1604 and today on a Friday, Saturday and Sunday sells everything from antiques to fine foods.

Festival Fever

A tasty trio of Belfast festivals hits the city this fall with Belfast Festival at Queen’s (16 Oct – 1 Nov) leading the pack on the theater, comedy and music front. Belfast Restaurant Week (4-11 Oct) will feed hungry tummies with top-notch grub (expect discounts) while Belfast Music Week (November) turns the city tuneful with a nod or two to locals-done-good such as Van ‘The Man’ Morrison.

Getting around

Take to two wheels and cycle around the city on a Belfast City Bike Tour or if you’re not feeling so energetic take a black cab taxi tour. You can also walk around the historic Titanic quarter, dock and pump house along Belfast’s waterfront on a Titanic Walking (or boat) Tour. The tales told on this one are as genuine as they come, and the generous servings of personality are free.

You must try

  • Café Conor – open from breakfast until late, the friendly waiters serve everything from original comfort food to classic European dishes.
  • Café Vaudeville – on Arthur Street in the city center, open all day for fine food in sumptuous surroundings, complete with free WiFi.
  • The Apartment – recognized as one of Belfast’s most fashionable venues, this buzzing bar and restaurant also offers spectacular views of Belfast City Hall.

You have to see

  • City Hall – a centerpiece on Belfast’s skyline, the City Hall, its surrounding gardens, and various statues are hugely popular amongst visitors and locals alike.
  • Black Taxi Tours  – jump aboard for a taxi tour of the city, taking in Belfast’s famous murals with a running commentary from your knowledgeable driver.
  • Game of Thrones locations – just a spear’s throw away from Belfast is where HBO’s famous series was shot, so why not visit the mystical land for yourself?

Exploring the city when the sun goes down.

Music in the blood

Belfast has one of the richest musical histories in Ireland. Birthplace to many artists and bands throughout the ages. When the evening arrives it’s the perfect time to experience some of this history for yourself at iconic venues such as The Limelight, The Empire and the Oh Yeah Music Centre all of which are at the center of Northern Ireland’s infamous live music scene.

“The food is always stunning – especially the oysters.”

And if you fancy a bite to eat before hitting the town try the Mourne Seafood Bar, a much loved local landmark on Bank Street that serves fresh fish from the ports of Annalong and Kilkeel. You could even try their very own stout – the perfect accompaniment to a plate of oysters.

Top Tastes

  • OX – this sublimely superb restaurant on Oxford Street offers dining with seasonal creativity.
  • James Street South – this bar and grill plus restaurant creates mouthwatering European cuisine.
  • The Barking Dog – the new-ish kid on the block, menus here spill over with invention. Shin Burgers and Sweet Potato Ravioli are two stand out

36 Hours in Belfast | New York Times

Breathtaking coastal views, rugged landscapes and tales of giants – incredible journeys await.