How to Spend 24 Hours in Belfast
Belfast packs a lot into a small city. It’s got a fascinating history, a range of activities and no shortage of places to quench your thirst or sate your hunger.
Thankfully, many of these attractions are a short distance from this Belfast hotel. In fact, you could easily spend a terrific 24 hours here.
Here’s how you can make the most of your time…
Morning in Belfast
If you’ve got a full day ahead, it’s a good idea to kick off with a hearty breakfast. One of our favourite breakfast joints is Café Conor. From gluten-free porridge to a pancake stack to their famous Big Breakfast, you’ll be set up for the day. They’re open for lunch too, and you wouldn’t be the first to make two visits in a day.
After that, swing by the award-winning Botanic Gardens. This a gentle, scenic way to walk off your meal. Marvel at the exotic plants, the birds of paradise, the Victorian architecture (we love that curved-glass greenhouse) and the elegant walking routes.
Alternatively, if it’s a rainy day, the Ulster Museum is worth checking out. If you’re looking for an elegant building that contains mummies, meteorite slices and dinosaur skeletons, look no further!
Afternoon in Belfast
There are plenty of ways to spend the afternoon in this beautiful city, as you might expect from a place with such a rich, long history.
Many visitors take the Black Cab Tour, which takes you through some key locations of the Troubles. It’s hopeful and beautiful to see how communities have recovered from their difficult histories and learned to work together. And the murals, massive paintings that take over the sides of entire buildings, are something to behold.
Examining Belfast’s most famous export (sorry, George Best), the Titanic Museum. This gorgeous, elaborate museum has nine interactive exhibits, showing you the history of the tragic, iconic ship. We especially like the Shipyard Ride, which brings you on a journey through the shipyard’s history.
The Game of Thrones Tour is a chance to walk in the footsteps of the Lannisters and Snows, and even sit on the Iron Throne! As you might have heard, much of the fantasy TV epic was filmed in Northern Ireland. Because so much was filmed here, you have a choice of locations to visit; Winterfell, several outdoor locations and (if you want to travel a little further north), the Iron Islands (aka Antrim). These locations are all at least forty minutes outside of the city, so plan accordingly. If you don’t fancy venturing beyond the city, there’s also a Game of Thrones Escape Room.
Evening in Belfast
Belfast at night, you’ll soon discover, is lively and fun.
For a bite to eat, we’d recommend The Barking Dog or Ginger Bistro.
The Barking Dog offers a menu of fresh, traditional fare that changes seasonally. It’s cosy, friendly, has a full bar, and (most importantly) the food is terrific.
Ginger Bistro is more of a bistro restaurant than bar. It’s now approaching its twentieth year in business, serving and prides itself on having helpful staff and a mouth-watering menu. Booking ahead is advised.
If you’re looking for somewhere traditional to quench your thirst, The Crown Bar is one of Belfast’s most famous watering holes. This 19th Century bar has been lovingly maintained and refurbished over the years, keeping its warm atmosphere and welcoming interior for over 100 years. If you can, try to nab one of its legendary snugs – a secluded mini-room within the bar.
For a more modern setting, The Perch Rooftop Bar is a hip, popular way to take in the beautiful view of Belfast. It gets crowded, but thankfully the Perch takes bookings if you’re there Monday to Thursday.
The Next Morning
For your final meal of this trip, the Allotment does fantastic breakfasts. Think locally sourced, traditional with a twist, whether it’s a fry, an omelette or something lighter.
See you in Belfast!
As you can see, there’s much to do in Ulster’s capital. You might want to stay longer, but 24 hours is enough time to get a good sample of what the city has to offer.
Hope to see you here soon!