7 Things to Do in Belfast, Northern Ireland

By Two Monkeys Travel - Contributor December 9th, 2019 Posted in Destination, Europe Travel Blog, Travel Blog, Travel Guides No comments

Who isn’t a fan of Game of Thrones (or GOT, to most people) these days? With its compelling storyline, mind-blowing graphics, and elaborate wardrobe and props, it’s no surprise that people were smitten by the series.

Game of Thrones Roadtrip, Belfast, Northern Ireland

But did you know that a lot of those beautifully shot scenes were filmed in Belfast? Yes, here’s the answer you’re looking for in case you’re wondering where those stunning places are. This Northern Ireland city was where all those astonishing scenes were brought to life.

Things to Do Belfast Northern Ireland
Photo by Geoff McHugh CC BY-SA 2.0

Aside from reliving your Game of Thrones memories within the confines of Belfast, there are also a lot of fun things you can do while in the city. Keep on reading to know more about why Belfast should be added to your must-visit list!

Game of Thrones Roadtrip, Belfast, Northern Ireland

1. Live your sailor dreams through Titanic Belfast and HMS Caroline

Many of us might not have heard of the White Star Line ever. But one of its ships, Titanic, surely rings a bell.

Take a visit to the Titanic Belfast, the world’s largest exhibition dedicated to one of the most famous (and sadly, tragic) ships of all time. There are also interactive displays and even a Shipyard Ride which will take you to various areas of the exhibition so you can get to know more about one of the most luxurious ships of her time.Titanic Museum, Game of Thrones Roadtrip, Belfast, Northern Ireland

Suggested tour: Grab your tickets to the Titanic exhibition and get to see SS Nomadic, the last of the White Star Line ships as well. 

Here’s a bonus attraction for maritime history fans: The HMS Caroline, a World War I veteran ship is also docked in Belfast and is open to visitors. Explore the ship and learn more about the battles it fought during the war.

2. Get that local bread!

Simply trying out some local Northern Ireland food is just boring. Why not learn how to make them instead? Sign up for some traditional bread making class to learn the tricks and tips on how to make some wheaten bread, potato bread, and soda bread all on your own and from scratch. How cool is that?! You’ll also get to enjoy other homemade treats while you’re at it, so you’ll surely go home with a full tummy and a new recipe.

Suggested tour: This bread making class is just a short drive away from Belfast, so you’ll get to explore the neighboring town while filling up your tummy with delicious food.

3. Experience the chilling prison life at Crumlin Road Gaol

Things to Do Belfast Northern Ireland
Photo by William Murphy CC BY-SA 2.0

This might not be your typical tourist spot at all, but the Crumlin Road Gaol is probably one of the things you should add to your itinerary when you’re in Belfast. This old prison will definitely give you goosebumps, but will also give you a good insight about the former jail’s chilling history. Walk the same halls the former prisoners once did from the courthouse to the jail and see where some of them spent their last days at.

Suggested tour: You can definitely book a ghost hunting trip to the Crum, but if you want to visit in the broad daylight, you can join a guided tour instead.

4. Get active and go trekking

Things to Do Belfast Northern Ireland
Photo by Jonathan McCormack CC BY 2.0

By now, based on what you see in GOT, you’re most likely aware of how beautiful Belfast’s landscape is– vast greenery, hills, cliffs, roads thickly lined with trees, and more. Don’t waste your chance of experiencing Belfast’s natural beauty by going on a trekking adventure through its mountains. You might even get to witness different species of animals while on tour!

Suggested tour: Join a trekking tour and enjoy breathing clean air as well as a stunning view of the city below.

5. Ride a Black Cab and get a history lesson

Things to Do Belfast Northern Ireland
Photo by Robin Kirk CC BY 2.0

Not a lot of people are aware of Belfast’s history, particularly its political situation. Know more about one of the most turbulent moments in Northern Ireland’s history, popularly known as The Troubles, as you navigate through the streets of Belfast while riding the famous Belfast black cab. You’ll get to visit most of Belfast’s most famous murals made by ex-prisoners which will let you get a glimpse of how they see the community’s conflict through their eyes.

Suggested tour: This particular black cab tour is hosted by a driver who personally shuttled passengers along with the famous falls and Shankill Roads, places that played a huge part in The Troubles and Belfast’s history in general.

6. Gain insight into some of Northern Ireland’s most tragic incidents

Things to Do Belfast Northern Ireland
Photo by Will Bakker CC BY-SA 2.0

Here’s another one for history buffs who’d like to get more information about The Troubles and some of the key moments during this part of history by visiting Derry. Here, you’ll find out more about the Battle of Bogside as well as the Bloody Sunday Massacre which shook the Northern Ireland community. You’ll also gain more knowledge about the partition of Ireland, the creation of the six-county state, and more.

Suggested tour: This walking tour around Derry is highly recommended for students, so if you’re a history buff, you’ll probably love all the discussion!

7. Be a GOT character for a day!

Game of Thrones, Belfast, Northern Ireland

Of course, last but most definitely not the least is what everyone’s waiting for– the Game of Thrones tour! Follow the footsteps of your favorite Winterfell (or whichever house you’re rooting for) character and do your best impersonation as you go on this one-of-a-kind journey. Will you get your chance at the Iron Throne by the end of the journey? That’s for you to find out!

Suggested tour: Take your GOT tour to the next level and explore popular tourist destinations Giant’s Causeway and the Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge as well.

Where to Stay in Belfast, Northern Ireland

Where to stay in Belfast, Northern Ireland if you’re a Backpacker

Castlereagh House

Things to Do Belfast Northern Ireland

Price: Check prices here

Hours: Check-in from 15:00 to 21:00

Style: Modern

Star: 4.5 star

Location: 33 Castlereagh Place, Belfast, BT5 4NN, United Kingdom

Booking: Booking.comAgoda

Get to know more about Castlereagh House through reviews.

Where to stay in Belfast, Northern Ireland for Families or Couples

CK Serviced Apartments

Things to Do Belfast Northern Ireland

Price: Check prices here

Hours: Check-in from 13:30

Style: Modern

Star: 4 star

Location: Arc Apartments 925 Queens Road, Belfast, BT3 9DG, United Kingdom

Booking: Booking.com

Get to know more about Castlereagh House through reviews.

Where to stay in Belfast, Northern Ireland if you want Luxury

The Fitzwilliam Hotel Belfast

Things to Do Belfast Northern Ireland

Price: Check prices here

Hours: Check-in from 15:00

Style: Modern

Star: 5 star

Location: Great Victoria Street, Belfast, BT2 7BQ, United Kingdom

Booking: Booking.com, Agoda

Want to know how our experience at the hotel went? Check it out here!

Frequently Asked Questions

1. How do I get a tourist visa to Belfast?

If you’re a UK Tourist Visa holder, you’re eligible to travel to Northern Ireland as well as the other countries that make up the kingdom namely England, Scotland and Wales.

2. Is it safe to visit Belfast, Northern Ireland?

Yes! Did you know that it’s actually one of the safest places to visit in the UK? Despite its tumultuous history, Belfast is a peaceful and safe place to visit and live in. Crime rates are relatively low in the area compared to other UK cities.

3. Is it expensive to visit Belfast, Northern Ireland?

At one point, Belfast has been considered as one of the most expensive holiday destinations in Europe. This is understandable, given that most accommodations go at around the $30 or more range and plane tickets can also cost quite a fortune. As for daily food expenses, expect to spend around $25 a meal at a mid-priced restaurant. Dinner can be quite expensive if you decide to eat at a more upscale place. Transportation can cost you around $15 for taxi rides a day

4. How do I fly to Belfast from Manila?

If you’re coming from Manila, you won’t be able to book non-stop flights to Belfast. However, you can definitely get on connecting flights that will take you to the city. Usually, it takes 2 connecting flights for you to get to Belfast from Manila. Most of them will take you to London first before you can transfer to a Belfast-bound flight. Flight times can take a while as well. On average, you’ll fly at least 18 hours to get to the city.

5. When is the best time to visit Belfast?

It never really gets extremely warm in Belfast if you’re used to tropical heat like in the Philippines. The warmest temperature they were able to record in the city only went up to 27 degrees Celsius. So if you want to visit during the summertime, you don’t have to worry about being welcomed by the sweltering heat. However, if you really want to see Belfast at its best, you should visit from around April to October. Be prepared for the rain, though, as Belfast gets lots of rainy days in a year.

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Written by Two Monkeys Travel - Contributor

Two Monkeys Travel Group – Community Travel Blog is a travel blog and website. We quickly grew into a valuable source of inspiring travel stories, advice, itineraries and travel guides, with the aim of demonstrating how to live a sustainable life of travel, whilst living your own definition of success. If you'd like to contribute and write a guest post, contact us at kach@twomonkeystravel.com

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