Belfast Local Information: 10 top things to know... more

  • 1. History of Belfast

    The name Belfast comes from the Gaelic 'Beal Feirste', meaning 'mouth of the sandy ford'. In the 17th century Belfast was a busy port for wool, grain and food. Linen was exported from the city in the early 19th century and White Linen Hall was built in 1788 – Belfast City Hall now stands on this site. The boom in this industry led to a boom in the shipbuilding industry. Most ...Read morefamously, the Titanic was built in Belfast in 1912. During the air raids of the Second World War, Belfast was bombed three times and a total of 955 people were killed and more than 3,200 houses destroyed. During the 1960s and 1970s the Troubles in Northern Ireland led to economic and social problems for the city. Read less

  • 2. Now in Belfast

    The Good Friday Agreement in 1998 brought new investment into the city and helped to reinvent it as a modern, vibrant hub. Belfast is still growing and developing and now has a population of more than 268,000. It has become a popular tourist destination. The modern buildings of Belfast Waterfront Hall and Odyssey Arena sit alongside the historic Victorian buildings like the Gra...Read morend Opera House and Ulster Hall. Read less

  • 3. Events in Belfast

    The Gaslight Sessions is a free music event that takes place on the first Wednesday of every month in the Spaniard Bar in Skipper Street. Different acts appear at this event. The Annual Decadence Vintage Bridal Fair takes place in the city every year and attracts brides and vintage lovers from all over Ireland. The Belfast Book Festival is an annual week-long event to celebrate...Read more the book, the reader and the writer. Other events to take place every year include the International Conference On Thinking, The Belfast Carnival, Music in the Parks, Féile an Earraigh music festival, the Belfast Maritime Festival and the St Patrick’s Day Carnival and Concert. Read less

  • 4. Attractions in Belfast

    The Ulster Museum has dinosaurs, an Egyptian Mummy and modern masterpieces among its exhibits, the Ulster Folk and Transport Museum shows life as it was 100 years ago through recreated cottages, farms, schools and shops. Belfast Zoo has around 1,200 animals and 140 species including elephants, bears, birds, giraffes and lions. W5 is a science and discovery centre which aims to ...Read moreanswer the questions of who, what, when, where and why. The Pirates Adventure Golf centre is 36 holes of fun golf in a Florida-style setting. Aunt Sandra’s Candy Factory allows visitors to see chocolates, fudge and candies being made by hand. The shop has been decorated to look like it was in 1953. Read less

  • 5. Things To Do in Belfast

    Titanic Walking Tours and Titanic Boat Tours are some of the ways you can find out about this famous ship. Traditional Irish music is played every night in many of the city’s pubs and venues. Greyhound racing takes place at the Drumbo Park Stadium on a regular basis. The Late Night Art Bus Tour gives visitors a chance to check out some late night art at a range of galleries i...Read moren the city. This takes place on the first Thursday of every month. The Belfast Music Tour is a bus journey that tells the city’s rock and roll history, from Van Morrison to Snow Patrol and more. The tour starts 2pm every Saturday at Katy Daly's Bar, Ormeau Avenue. Chronicles of Narnia author CS Lewis was born and grew up in Belfast. The CS Lewis tour takes fans around sites that were significant in his life, including his birthplace and the house from where Narnia grew. Read less

  • 6. Business in Belfast

    Markets are a big part of life in Ireland and among the list of markets of offer in Belfast is The Black Market, a craft market that takes place on the first Sunday of every month in Hill Street, in the Cathedral Quarter. This attracts people from all over the world. The Fashion Souk is a fair-fashion market held every month in the Europa Hotel. Over 60 stalls appear at the eve...Read morent selling items that promote the Reduce, Reuse, Recycle ethos. There is also St George’s Market, Smithfield Market and Continental Market, among others. The wide variety of shops on offer in Belfast are all within walking distance of each other and include everything from boutiques to shopping centres. Read less

  • 7. Transport in Belfast

    There are two airports serving the city, Belfast International Airport and George Best Belfast City Airport. Ferry services run to Belfast Port and Larne Harbour from Stranraer, Troon and Cairnryan in Scotland, Fleetwood and Birkenhead (Liverpool) in England and Douglas in The Isle of Man. Belfast Central Station and Great Victoria Street Bus and Train Station are the city’s ...Read moremain train stations. There are plenty of main roads linking Belfast to the rest of Ireland and Northern Ireland. Read less

  • 8. Entertainment in Belfast

    The main venues for music, theatre and comedy in Belfast are the Grand Opera House, the Waterfront Hall Conference and Concert Centre, the Old Museum and Arts Centre, Kings Hall, Odyssey Arena and Ulster Hall.Other venues for live music include the Empire Music Hall, Laverys Bar, The Black Box and Spring and Airbrake.

  • 9. Famous Landmarks in Belfast

    Belfast City Hall, in Donegall Square, is a huge Victorian building with a giant dome and carved stone statues.Belfast Castle was built in the 1860s and is a popular tourist attraction and wedding venue.

  • 10. Interesting Facts about Belfast

    Belfast City Council spends £60,000 a year removing chewing gum from the streets. This means an average piece of chewing gum in the city costs three pence to buy but ten pence to clear up.

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  • Belfast Maritime Festival

    The Belfast Maritime Festival in June is a weekend of fun activities to celebrate the city’s rich maritime history. The event takes place in June in the Queen’s Quay and Abercorn Basin area, where magnificent ships sail into the city from around the world for every

  • Titanic 100 Festival

    The city of Belfast celebrates the Titanic every year with this festival to celebrate the building of the ship and the lives of the people who sailed on her. The festival was extended to last for two months over April and May to mark the anniversary of many key dates i

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    Alan Grimason, an award winning Belfast designer has retired on a high after his already famous shiny cladding was added to the walls of the Titanic building. His cladding covers the multi-million pound visitor attraction that is shaping up to become an...

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    A famous face will be amongst Belfast locals celebrating the first anniversary of the rebuilt Lyric theatre; Nobel Laureate Seamus Heaney. The Lyric will celebrate its first birthday with a packed programme of diverse events. World renowned poet...

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