Bed and Breakfasts in Northern Ireland
It is said that Northern Ireland is a land where time stands still and memories never fade. Well it’s certainly a land of spectacular coastlines, towering mountains and stunning countryside and it’s full of heritage and culture too.
Northern Ireland is open for business in every respect and there’s much to see and do in a region that has so much history, sports and leisure activities, good food and drink, sights and scenery to enjoy.
Once the centre of the North’s industrial revolution, Belfast is now a bustling, cosmopolitan city with outstanding retail outlets, top class restaurants, galleries and a vibrant nightlife to compare with anywhere else.
Now, complementing the older buildings such as City Hall, Queen’s University and the Grand Opera House are more modern varieties in the shape of the Waterfront Hall and the multi-purpose Odyssey Centre. It may be centre-stage but Belfast is not exclusive as there is much to enjoy in the 6 counties that make up Northern Ireland.
Antrim, the land of glens and giants, has some of the most stunning scenery in the country. It has the Glens of Antrim and remarkable cliff-top walks, and it’s also home to the world famous Giant’s Causeway, an official world heritage site and Carrickfergus Castle.
Armagh is renowned for it’s cathedrals and St.Patrick, who began his Christian mission from the area, but it is also farming country and is particularly well known for the number of apple growers. The city of Armagh is older than Canterbury as a Christian religious site and it has been Ireland’s spiritual capital for 1,500 years.
Down is a mix of hills, the Mourne Mountains, a long coastline and the impressive Strangford Lough. Important archaeological sites and ancient monuments, church ruins, castles and monastic sites are in abundance in the county that is best known as the burial place of St.Patrick.
It’s also home to many attractive towns and villages, many of which are within 30 mins of Belfast.
Fermanagh is probably the most watery county in Ireland and is known as Ireland’s Lake District. Lough Erne dominates the county and exploring it by land or by boat is a delightful experience.
Enniskillen is an ideal base for visiting grand estates such as Castle Coole and Florence Court. Belleek Pottery and Visitor Centre and a boat trip on a subterranean lake at Marble Arch Caves.
Londonderry dates back to the 6th century A.D. when St.Columba founded a monastery there and it has had a colourful and at times turbulent past.
Londonderry is the last surviving walled city in Ireland, a reminder of its ancient struggles against hostile invaders. This remarkable old city is set in a surrounding landscape of natural beauty and diversity.
Tyrone is the largest county and it’s known for its prehistoric sites, the Sperrin Mountains and forest parks.
Tyrone has close ties with America, a status that is acknowledged at the Ulster-American Folk Park near the county town of Omagh.
Absolute Must See
- The Giant’s Causeway, because it’s a World Heritage Site and it’s totally different to anything you’ve ever seen before.
- The Ulster Folk & Transport Museum at Cultra is one of the very best museums in Ireland, because it captures much of the North’s cultural and industrial history.
- The Crown Liquor Saloon on Belfast’s Great Victoria Street, for genuine Victorian ambience, dating back to the Victorian era is not only Belfast’s most famous pub, it’s also a listed building under the ownership of the National Trust.
- The Palladian mansion Castle Coole in Fermanagh, the finest example of 18th century neo-classical architecture in Ireland.
- Castle Archdale County Park includes a museum highlighting the role of the Catalina flying boats based on Lough Erne during World War 2.
Did You Know?
- The oldest legal distillery in the world is at Bushmills, having been granted its licence in 1608 by King James I is still distilling and giving guided tours.
- Wireless inventor Marconi made his first successful radio transmission between Ballycastle & Rathlin Island in 1898 and there are regular ferries taking visitors there.
- The fated cruise liner s.s. Titanic was built at the Harland & Wolff shipyard in Belfast and there are organised tours to the atmospheric drawing offices.
- Belfast-born guitar maker George Lowden counts top guitarists like Eric Clapton, Mark Knoppler and The Edge among his customers.