Europe Ireland Travel

An Overnight Stay In Belfast

August 31, 2018

As you know, myself and Andrew headed to Belfast last weekend. We just stayed one night, and I have to say it was one of the best weekend’s we have had in a long time. Both of us have had a pretty stressful few weeks in work and it was so nice just to escape the madness and chill out together.

Getting There

We drove up on Saturday morning, leaving at about 9.30am. It took us just over 90 minutes and it is pretty much a straight road all the way from Dublin. On arrival, we found parking in the Great Northern Car Park which offers an overnight rate and later found out that with our hotel, we got it for £10 per 24hours.

Staying There

I browsed so many hotels in Belfast before settling on The Grand Central Hotel, a new addition to Belfast that just opened in June of this year. It was so beautiful and our room was just amazing. It had a huge bathroom with a stunning free standing bath, amazing views of the city and a massive king sized bed. The hotel also left some local treats for us, which was a lovely touch.

The hotel itself has a newly opened sky-bar called The Observatory and even if you don’t stay here, I would recommend paying it a visit. The views are stunning, and the cocktails are super impressive!

The hotel was situated right in the centre with access to all the main attractions within short walking distance. Some other hotels that I had looked at include:

  • Bullitt Hotel
  • Stormont Hotel
  • The Merchant Hotel
  • Europa Hotel
  • Ten Square Hotel
  • Malmaison Belfast
Eating & Drinking

It’s safe to say we did our fair share of eating and drinking while we were here! These are just a few of the places that we tried out, but definitely our favourites that we would recommend to anyone visiting Belfast.

Established Coffee

As soon as we arrived we headed straight to Established. Here we enjoyed two delicious 3fe coffees and a really nice brunch. I opted for the jerk chicken tacos, and I can’t remember what Andrew’s was called, but it was amazing. They also had pastries and cakes on the menu, but we were just too full to try them.

Curated Kitchen & Coffee

After a less than impressive breakfast on Sunday morning (I won’t mention where…) we headed to a small nearby café called Curated Kitchen & Coffee. We were blown away. The food was some of the tastiest I have ever had. Ever. The menu changes weekly based on their favourite recipes from their favourite cookbooks so you can be sure that you are getting the best of the best. We had spicy eggs and I’ll let the photo speak for itself…just yum.

Babel

My favourite of all the cocktail bars we visited has to be Babel. Located on the rooftop of the Bullitt Hotel, this gem has all the things I look for in a bar. Pretty interiors, delicious cocktails & so many photo spots! I got the Sky-Line Spritz which combines Prosecco, Crème de Violette, Passionfruit Shrub & Lemon to create an explosion (similar to that of parma violet sweets) in your mouth. Amazing!

You can check out my other post on the top cocktail bars in Belfast for more inspiration!

Other recommendations
  • Acton & Sons
  • Ox Belfast
  • The Muddlers Club
  • Coppi
  • Things to do
Things To Do
The Big Fish

The Big Fish or Salmon of Knowledge is a mosaic sculpture by John Kindness. All along the body of the fish there are images and words that tell the story of Belfast.

St. George’s Market

St. Georges market is one of the nicest local markets I have ever been to, especially in Ireland. It is open from Friday – Sunday and provides a home to so many amazing local producers. We arrived just as it opened on Sunday morning and there was already a buzzing atmosphere. The place was packed! With live music playing, stalls serving coffee and breakfast, jewellery makers, souvenirs, paintings… there was literally so much variety. It was really nice just wandering around and sampling some of Belfast’s best produce. If you’re there, and find a stall with fudge – get the salted caramel version and thank me later. Delicious.

Belfast City Hall

Belfast City Hall is one of the city’s most iconic buildings showcasing impressive Baroque style architecture. There are free public tours available everyday and if that’s not your style, you can stroll around and admire it yourself.

Wander the streets

There are so many hidden gems that can be found along random streets and alleyways in Belfast. Just wandering around is a great way to get familiar with a new city and find new spots that google may not recommend.

The Titanic

Of course one of the most famous landmarks in Belfast is The Titanic Museum. On Sunday, before we headed home we walked along the boardwalk of the quays to check it out. We thought we would be able to get a ticket but unfortunately they were booked out until later in the evening. It was raining at the time so that’s probably why most people were looking for something indoors to do. If this is something that you really would like to see, I would recommend booking it in advance to guarantee your time slot.

I was so surprised with how much there was to see and do in Belfast. If you’re heading here any time soon, be sure to let me know how you get on!

Annmarie x