Wednesday, 6 July 2016

Travel: Belfast, Northern Ireland

Belfast is a city that, prior to visiting, I knew very little about other than snippets on Newsround in the early 90s (oh the days when news was distilled into a friendly ten-minute segment before Blue Peter!).

Visiting on a sunny Bank Holiday Monday the city feels like somewhere undergoing a lot of change, the Titanic Quarter feels pristinely new and the nearby Titanic Studios make, amongst other things, Game of Thrones putting Belfast firmly on the cultural map for millennials. Have a read of my review of Titanic Belfast here.

things to do one day in belfast

The area around Queen's University is great for a wander and for café-hopping. From traditional student grub to Scandi coffee shops, there's something for every taste - we popped into Maggie May's which sells good old-fashioned hangover cures in the form of cheesy beans on toast and milkshakes. Minus any hipster pretence the prices are super low and service is friendly (they have soy milk for the coffees so my three day craving was satisfied - the little things!)

things to do one day in belfast

The Botanic Gardens were resplendent in the sunshine. The palm house was particularly beautiful and worth braving the humidity inside for. The gardens lead on to the Ulster Museum which is an architectural fusion of old and new - the ornate frontage transforming into brutalist minimalism. Inside the museum touches on the history of Northern Ireland as well as artefacts from all around the world and temporarily art exhibitions. Entrance is free and its the sort of place where half an day or just an hour can be spent happily.

things to do one day in belfast

things to do one day in belfast

Finally, dinner - I thought Home restaurant looked good when I'd checked the website the week before (fussy diner here) but it surpassed all expectations - with a gluten free, veggie and "skinny" menu alongside the regular one there really is something for everyone. It's so rare for me to go to a restaurant and like the sound of more than one thing on the menu but at Home I wanted the entire vegetarian menu - eventually I decided on a small portion of the chili tofu and a small super salad on the side. All dishes are available in two portion sizes which makes it a great way to try two things or to share if that is your inclination (FYI, I don't share food).

things to do one day in belfast

Belfast International airport is very close to the city centre and the short flight makes this a great weekend city for those of us with frequent flyer inclinations.
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4 comments

  1. I've got to say I had no idea what Belfast was like! Sounds like a really good place for a weekend trip.

    Jane / deluminators

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  2. I've been to Belfast once and it was so lovely, your pictures are wonderful! You seem really lovely too and your blog is great, let me know if you would like to follow each other and stay in touch! x

    adelelydia.blogspot.com

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  3. This sounds like so much fun!

    Maria xxx

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