Cosmopolitan, grand and always up for the craic, Belfast is a city of quarters, each one waiting to be discovered. From the Titanic Quarter to the buzzing Cathedral Quarter, Queens to Gaeltacht, fly to Belfast from Southampton Airport and spend time getting to know all of Northern Ireland’s largest city.
From its pedigree as a historical shipbuilding city to its history as a politically divided one, Belfast is also a city of music and festivals. Home to the stunning Queen’s University Belfast and the Grand Opera House, there’s plenty to explore.
Fly into the George Best Belfast City airport from Southampton. With an average flight time of 1hour 25 minutes, it’s only 3 miles from the city centre, and has car hire desks, taxis, bus and train information.
Top things to see and do
Explore over 100 years of history at Belfast’s infamous prison. Crumlin Road Gaol first opened its gates to prisoners in 1846 and for 150 years the Gaol has housed murderers, suffragettes and loyalist and republican prisoners. It has witnessed births, deaths and marriages and has been the home to executions, escapes, hunger-strikes and riots. Discover what life was like for prisoners as a tour takes you from the tunnel linking the courthouse on the other side of the Crumlin Road to the Hanging Cell, the Historic Holding Cells, Governor’s Office, Centre Circle, C-Wing, Hospital and Graveyard.
Just outside Belfast on the North Antrim coast, 12 miles of basalt stone columns make up the amazing UNESCO World Heritage Site of the world famous Giant's Causeway. Take sturdy shoes for a walk along the dramatic, undulating, mainly grass cliff path, with breath taking views of a rugged coastline, in an area of outstanding natural beauty. Then rest up at the Old Bushmills Distillery for a drop of amber gold. Perfect after a yomp.
Titanic’s little sister is an attraction all of its own. Tender to the Titanic and the last remaining White Star Line ship in the world! Restored to her original glory and back home in Belfast’s historic Hamilton Dock. Come on board and experience over 100 years of authentic maritime and social history. When you’re done there’s also Titanic’s Dry Dock and the Titanic Belfast. That’s a lot of Titanic.
Off the beaten track
The eco and wallet friendly way to see Belfast is by bike. For a glimpse of the real Belfast you’ll get to see some great spots only accessible on two wheels. Explore the City’s historic Quarters and stop for an extended coffee break at the Titanic Dock or the wonderful St. George’s Market, with lots of other sightseeing and refreshment opportunities. Weekends only.
Belfast is filled with colour by day and lit up by night through our entertaining programme of annual festivals and events. No matter what time of the year you visit the city, your trip is bound to coincide with one of Belfast’s many festivals giving you the chance to experience everything from world music, theatre productions, gastronomic food festivals, traditional sessions and contemporary dance.
The creation of political murals in Northern Ireland can be traced back as far as 1908. Since then a tradition has been cemented, with murals becoming not only an emotional and reactionary outlet for frustration and change, but a unique part of Northern Irish culture. The city has 17 walls in total since the onset of the Troubles in 1971. See the political murals on the Shankill (Loyalist) and Falls (Republican) Roads, and the Peace Wall that divides them.