Three Things You Must Do in Belfast 3 months ago

Three Things You Must Do in Belfast

If you've planning a mini-staycation in Belfast this summer, add these to your plans.

Welcome to JOE's 24 Hours In... series, in which we will make singular recommendations for travelling visitors who are spending just the day in a particular location. As part of our recommendations, we'll be picking out one hotel, one restaurant and/or bar, and one activity that all are top of the list for that location.


And so for this edition, we look at what to do if you're spending 24 Hours In... Belfast, beginning with..

MUST STAY - Grand Central Hotel

Situated right in the heart of the city, Grand Central Hotel towers over its surroundings, in all of its 23-storey glory. The top floor is dedicated to the Observatory Bar, which is the tallest bar on the island of Ireland, providing some outstanding views of the cityscape around and below you. Closer to the ground, you can visit the ornate Seahorse Restaurant, which features an incredible A La Carte menu, or if you're feeling particularly fancy, the seven-course tasting menu delivers some of the tastiest food imaginable, using local ingredients to create some sumptuous worldwide-influenced flavours.

The rooms themselves are modern and slick, filled with all the expected conveniences, while being comfortable and spacious enough to be inviting beyond just being a place to sleep in. The staff are supremely friendly, and it is also magnificently helpful that you're literally right across the road from Belfast City Hall, which regularly has markets and events on its grounds.


MUST SEE - St. George's Market

One of the most famous markets on the island, St. George's Market is exactly the kind of outlet that every major town and city in Ireland should aim to have. Filled with everything from home-made soaps, candles and bath-bombs, to rare movie, TV show and video game posters and paraphernalia... from vintage fashion to a fresh fish stalls... coffee brewing stands to unique light fixtures... every row will unveil a new type of thing to check out and put your impulse buying skills to the test.


However, if nothing else, St. George's Market is famous for the Belfast Bap. People queue for hours - literally! - for the two sausages, two hash browns, four rashers, black pudding, two fried eggs and your choice of ketchup or brown sauce, all served on a fresh Belfast Bap. Put your order in when you arrive, and then go wandering the stalls until they call you back to collect it.


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MUST DO - Titanic Quarter


We could just say to do the Titanic Museum itself and be done with it, but the truth is there is actually quite a bit more to do in the Titanic Quarter. We'll start off with the obvious and say, yes, if you've never done it, the Titanic Museum is a must-visit, as it is a cutting-edge journey through the past and present of the sunken vessel.

But there is also the Titanic Hotel, which is also filled with its own historical relevance. There is the Belfast Harbour Marina. The Game Of Thrones instillations. The Vertigo indoor skydiving facility. The famous SSE Arena, if you were to time your visit with a gig. The SS Nomadic. The shops. The bars. The restaurants. You could spend the entire day in the Titanic Quarter without setting foot inside the museum and not be bored... but again, you should definitely visit the Titanic Museum if you haven't already.


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