There is no shortage of fun things to do in Belfast. Well known for its lively historic city center, Victorian architecture, and fabulous dining scene, the capital of Northern Ireland is a great place to visit in the United Kingdom.
Attractions in Belfast are plentiful. Whether you wish to see the world-famous Titanic Quarter, explore picturesque gardens and parks, take your kids to a state-of-the-art science center, or sample local food delicacies at the St George’s Market, there is plenty to look forward to when visiting this vibrant city on the banks of the River Lagan.
To help you decide where to go, here is a comprehensive list of things to do in Belfast.
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Top 10 Things to do in Belfast
Visit the Titanic Museum
The Titanic Quarter is without a doubt the most popular tourist attraction in Belfast. Titanic was actually assembled right here in Belfast at the old Harland and Wolff shipyard. Pay a visit to the cutting-edge museum and see the ship’s meticulously reproduced interiors and many amazing artifacts such as brochures, letters, and menus. While you are in the neighbourhood, stop by the Titanic Hotel Belfast to admire the beauty of period-style furnishings and décor.
Shop for Local Foods and Souvenirs at St George’s Market
Dating back to the 17th century, St George’s Market is one of the oldest attractions in Belfast. Situated inside a picturesque Victorian building, this bustling market is a great place to shop for arts and crafts, clothing, souvenirs, jewelry, and local food delicacies. Expect to see many vendors selling fish and seafood, as well as food stalls offering sandwiches, coffee, and snacks.
The market is open from Friday to Sunday and hosts musical performances and charity events. How to get here? Hop on a free market shuttle bus that runs on Fridays and Saturdays between 11 am and 3 am from locations in central Belfast.
Explore the Botanic Gardens
A visit to the Botanic Gardens is one of the best things to do for couples in Belfast. Adjacent to Queen’s University, the property is set on 28 acres of land. Make your way to the lovely Palm House, a glasshouse comprised of curved iron and glass that houses a range of tropical plants.
The thing you also have to see is the wonderful 19th-century Tropical Ravine. This indoor sunken garden is home to exotic delights such as cinnamon, orchids, bromeliad, and birds of paradise. The Botanic Gardens are also a popular spot for major concerts and festivals. A famous Irish band, U2, played here!
See the Ulster Museum
Spend a day at the Ulster Museum, one of the must-visit attractions in Belfast. Located just a short drive from the Waterfront Hall, this impressive national museum celebrates local history and natural science. Exhibits include a collection of ancient relics, the Armada room, a gallery of modern art pieces, natural science exhibits, and much more. The 2,500-year-old Egyptian Mummy called Princess Takabuti is definitely the most famous attraction here. The good news is that the Ulster Museum offers free entrance to the public. It is also worth mentioning that occasionally, the museum hosts the popular Night at the Museum event.
Join a Guided Tour of the Belfast City Hall
Culture vultures looking for things to do in Belfast should definitely check out the Belfast City Hall. Located in the center of Donegall Square, this baroque building is used as the headquarters of the Belfast City Council. Join a guided tour of the building’s public exhibition space that encompasses 16 rooms including important areas such as Principal Rooms, the Chamber, and the Grand Staircase. The tour lasts for about an hour and no prior reservations are needed. Step outside the City Hall and go for a peaceful stroll through the large park and garden area.
Take your Kids to the Belfast Zoo
Looking for things to do in Belfast together with your little ones? Head out to the Belfast Zoo, one of Northern Ireland’s top family attractions. Set on 55 acres of land, the zoo is home to about 130 different animal species including everything from zebras, tigers, and lions to Asian elephants, California sea lions, Gento penguins, and moloch gibbons. Don’t miss the rainforest exhibits which include a range of tropical plants. Your kids can interact and feed animals such as donkeys, ponies, Tamworth pigs, and goats.
Visit the Queen’s University
A world-renowned academic institution with over 160 years of heritage, Queen’s University is a great place to visit in Belfast. Visitors can admire the beauty of the Lanyon Building which was designed by the famous architect Sir Charles Lanyon. Make sure to stop by the Queen’s Welcome Centre that serves as an information point for tourists visiting South Belfast and offers a nice selection of souvenirs. If you wish to go on a guided tour of the campus, contact the Welcome Center before your arrival.
Hop on a Belfast Beer Bike Adventure with Wee Toast Tour
Wee Toast Tour’s beer bike is one of the most fun things to do in Belfast. This unique cycle tour through the city of Belfast is a great way to experience the city and see some of its finest attractions from a unique perspective. Enjoy a drink at an onboard moving bar that runs on peddle power while cycling past iconic landmarks. The company works on Bring Your Own basis (BYO) for food and drinks, but you can also use their barrel and tap system. The tours start from Amelia Street in Belfast and reservations are recommended.
Spend a Day at the Belfast Castle
Located on the slopes of Cavehill Country Park, Belfast Castle is a charming Baronial-style stately home built in the 19th century. It’s a perfect place for a weekend getaway with that special someone. Whether you wish to enjoy magnificent views of Belfast, step inside the Cave Hill Visitor Centre and learn more about the history of the castle, or have a memorable dining experience at the on-site Cellar Restaurant, there is plenty to look forward to when visiting Belfast Castle. The grounds are popular for picnics and wedding ceremonies during the summer months.
Discover family-friendly exhibits at the W5 Interactive Discovery Centre
A visit to the W5 Interactive Discovery Centre is one of the most interesting things to do in Belfast for families with children. This state-of-the-art interactive science center is home to more than 250 hands-on exhibits divided into four zones. Your little ones will be encouraged to explore and learn about technology through play. Some of the most popular attractions include the multi-storey 3D climbing structure called the Climbit, the multi-sensory Spacebase activity zone, and MED-lab where kids can see how a human body looks from the inside. Make sure to check out the soft-play area where your children can assemble a Formula 1 car. After checking out these fabulous exhibits, stop by the café and the gift shop.
Go on a City Tour
Where to Stay in Belfast
As you can see there is plenty of things to do in Belfast – and more to be added.
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