Northern Ireland Travel Guide: 24 Amazing Visitor Experiences!

I’m excited to share with you my Northern Ireland Travel Guide! It features 24 incredible visitor experiences for every hour of the day.

I recently travelled to Northern Ireland with the sole purpose of tracking down 24 amazing moments travellers can experience…one for each hour of the day.

My very first trip a few years back had been spent exploring Belfast and venturing up to the Causeway Coast on a day trip, but I had left barely scratching the surface. That’s why I was thrilled to be coming back to Northern Ireland, this time with plenty of time to spare and an itinerary that would take me across the country.

So, why do travelers love visiting Northern Ireland? It’s a combination of breathtaking landscapes, rich history, warm people, thrilling adventures, and, of course, the delicious food. But what truly makes Northern Ireland stand out are its people. Warm, witty, and always ready with a story, they make you feel at home.

From food tours to Game of Thrones experiences, and coastal walks to haunted castle visits, here’s a little taste of what I experienced in Northern Ireland.

Northern Ireland in 24 Experiences

Northern Ireland Coastal Walk
Northern Ireland Coastal Walk
Dressing up in Northern Ireland for a Game of Thrones Experience
Dressing up in Northern Ireland for a Game of Thrones Experience
Scenery in Northern Ireland
Scenery in Northern Ireland
Experiencing the drink scene in Northern Ireland
Experiencing the drink scene in Northern Ireland
Inside the Merchant Hotel in Belfast
Inside the Merchant Hotel in Belfast

01:00 – Have cocktails at The Merchant Hotel

One of my favourite experiences in Belfast was having a cocktail at The Merchant Hotel. With an elegant and classy atmosphere that isn’t pretentious, and a jaw-dropping selection of cocktails, it’s easy to see why this cocktail bar was voted best in the world by Tales of the Cocktail. It’s a fun spot to either end the evening or kickstart the night depending on your style.

The Merchant Hotel whispers tales of its storied past from every corner. Originally built as a bank in the 19th century, its transformation into a luxury hotel has been nothing short of spectacular. The architecture alone is a feast for the eyes. It features a stunning façade and exquisite interiors that pay homage to its heritage. Think grandiose marble, soaring ceilings, and opulent decor that transport you to a bygone era.

Location, location, location – the Merchant Hotel boasts an enviable one. Situated in the Cathedral Quarter, it’s the perfect base to explore Belfast’s rich tapestry of culture, history, and entertainment. Cobblestone streets, buzzing pubs, galleries, and shops are just steps away.

What truly sets the Merchant Hotel apart, though, is its unparalleled service. I felt like I was treated like royalty. The staff goes above and beyond to ensure you feel right at home whilst sipping on your cocktail.

Location: Merchant Hotel – Address: 16 Skipper Street, Belfast

02:00 – Enjoy the nightlife at The Bullitt Hotel

Additionally, Belfast has legendary nightlife and after hitting up a few pubs I finished the night at Bullitt Hotel where there was a live DJ set. This was another lively spot with great cocktails, so come thirsty!

When the sun dips below the horizon in Belfast, the city doesn’t sleep; it comes alive for travelers and locals alike! There’s something absolutely magical about the atmosphere of Belfast’s nightlife. I would describe it as vibrant, diverse, and, frankly, a lot of fun. You’ve got pubs. You’ve got discos. And everything else in between.

Whether you’re in the mood for a quiet pint, a night of dancing, or simply soaking in the ambiance of this lively city, Belfast delivers. It’s not just the places or the activities; it’s the feeling of being welcomed into a community, of experiencing the city’s heartbeat at its most vibrant. That’s why travelers find themselves falling in love with Belfast after dark, time and time again.

Location: Bullitt Hotel – 40a Church Lane, Belfast

Learning to make sourdough bread in Northern Ireland
Learning to make sourdough bread in Northern Ireland
Loaf of sourdough bread
Loaf of sourdough bread

03:00 – Bake some sourdough bread

Now for a rather unusual activity: if you’re an early bird, how about baking some sourdough bread?

I joined Dara at the Ursa Minor Bakehouse, where he is up at 3 am daily to make his famous sourdough bread. Furthermore, his bread picked up awards at the World Bread Awards in 2016, so even if you can’t rise early, swing by for a fresh loaf later in the morning to see what it’s all about.

There’s just something about Irish sourdough bread that tickled my tastebuds from the very first bite. It’s a bit like Ireland itself—rustic, hearty, and delightful. It is made with only the essential ingredients—flour, water, salt, and the all-important sourdough starter. The process, relying on natural fermentation, gives it that distinctive tangy flavor and chewy texture. I just love the irresistible contrast—the play between the crunchy exterior and the pillowy interior.

Whether it’s slathered with rich, creamy Irish butter, topped with smoked salmon, or dipped into a hearty bowl of stew, sourdough complements a wide array of Irish dishes. It’s common to be greeted with freshly baked sourdough in homes, B&Bs, and cafes across the country. I don’t know what else to say! You’ve gotta try it!

Location: Ursa Minor Bakery – 45 Ann Street, Ballycastle [10am to 4pm (Tue-Sat)]

Sleeping in the haunted Ballygally Castle
Sleeping in the haunted Ballygally Castle
The haunted Ballygally Castle in Northern Ireland
The haunted Ballygally Castle in Northern Ireland

04:00 – Sleep in a Haunted Castle

If you dare muster up the courage, consider visiting the haunted room located at Ballygally Castle, which is home to the ghost of Lady Isobel Shaw.

The story of Lady Isabella is one of those tales that linger with you, long after you’ve heard it. The story goes that after being locked in her room and starved by her husband, she fell to her death from the window. This story isn’t just a ghost tale; it’s a mother’s heartbreaking story, woven into the very fabric of Ballygally Castle. Guests often report encounters with a gentle spirit, a soft presence that seems to be searching, always searching… perhaps for the child she never got to hold.

Mediums have been invited to spend the night at the castle and they’ve reported that there are more ghosts than actual guests.

Would you spend the night here?

Location: Ballygally Castle – Coast Road, Ballygally

Giant's Causeway in Northern Ireland
Giant’s Causeway in Northern Ireland
Visiting the Giant's Causeway in Northern Ireland
Visiting the Giant’s Causeway in Northern Ireland

05:00 – Watch sunrise at Giant’s Causeway

This was my second time visiting Giant’s Causeway, but this time around, I beat the crowds. Hence, if you don’t mind setting an alarm while on holiday, it’s worth getting up early and visiting for sunrise.

The Giant’s Causeway, with its interlocking basalt columns, is a feast for the eyes. Its 40,000 hexagonal columns stretch out into the sea, as if a giant had indeed paved his way across the waters. Walking on these stones, formed by volcanic eruptions 60 million years ago, feels like stepping back in time as you visit this UNESCO Heritage site. It’s a visual spectacle that defies words; it made me ponder the incredible forces that shaped our world.

But what’s beauty without a story? The Giant’s Causeway is steeped in legends, most famously the tale of Finn McCool, the giant who built this causeway to walk to Scotland to challenge his rival. When you visit this place for sunrise, it’s easy to imagine these tales to be true.

Indeed, the Giant’s Causeway is more than just a great place to visit—it’s a treasure of the natural world. In my opinion, it’s an absolute must to add to your itinerary!



Location: Giant’s Causeway – 44 Causeway Road, Bushmills

Catch & Sea Tour on the Causeway Coast
Catch & Sea Tour on the Causeway Coast
Catch & Sea Tour on the Causeway Coast
Catch & Sea Tour on the Causeway Coast
Catch & Sea Tour on the Causeway Coast
Catch & Sea Tour on the Causeway Coast

06:00 – Take the Catch & Sea Tour

Did you arrive in Northern Ireland with your sea legs? If so, you can join the Catch & Sea Tour with experienced fishermen for their early morning catch.

Not only do you get to experience the dramatic coastline of the Causeway Coast; however, you can even catch your own breakfast.

Also, once you make it back to land, the catch is cooked up for breakfast along with a lovely assortment of baked bread, cheeses, chutney, butter and freshly brewed coffee. The perfect way to start the morning!

I’ll warn you though…it can be pretty rough out on the seas!

If you’re okay with that then proceed. Otherwise, it’s possibly wise to consider another activity.

Location: Babushka – S Pier, Portrush

Dark Hedges in Northern Ireland
Dark Hedges in Northern Ireland
GOT tour at Dark Hedges in Northern Ireland
GOT tour at Dark Hedges in Northern Ireland
Dark Hedges in Northern Ireland
Dark Hedges in Northern Ireland

07:00 – Visit the Dark Hedges

Any Game Of Thrones fans out there?

Eat your heart out at the Dark Hedges where you’ll find the famous tree-lined avenue with an opportunity to dress up in costume while wielding a sword on horseback.

Ensure that you bring extra batteries for your camera. The atmospheric tunnel is a major tourist attraction so arrive early to beat the crowds.

The Dark Hedges gained worldwide fame as the Kingsroad in the beloved “Game of Thrones” series. Fans will instantly recognize this hauntingly beautiful road as the backdrop for Arya Stark’s escape from King’s Landing. Walking down this road, it’s easy to feel transported into the world of Westeros. You’re half expecting to catch a glimpse of a direwolf in the shadows. Or maybe you’ll hear the clatter of approaching knights.

But The Dark Hedges aren’t just for “Game of Thrones” diehards. This place holds its own charm. Planted in the 18th century, the trees were meant to impress visitors approaching the entrance to Gracehill House. Today, they impress the world. There’s just a timeless beauty that is hard to capture in words. It’s a photographer’s dream. And a nature lover’s paradise.

Location: Dark Hedges – Bregagh Rd, Stranocum, Ballymoney

Contact: Sheans Horse Farm – Armoy, 38 Coolkeeran Rd, Ballymoney

08:00 – Walk the Gobbins Cliff Path

To experience the best of rugged Northern Ireland, you can walk the Gobbins Cliff Path.

Perched on the rugged coast of County Antrim, the Gobbins Cliff Path is not your average scenic stroll. This is a walk that takes you on the very edge of the land. Here the sea meets the sky. Every step reveals a new vista. Engineered marvelously along the basalt cliffs, the path includes bridges, tunnels, and stairways that made me feel like I was part of an epic saga.

The roar of the Atlantic below, the smell of salt in the air, the touch of ancient rock beneath your fingers—it’s all here. Birdwatchers are in for a treat. You’ll have a distinct chance to spot puffins, kittiwakes, and other seabirds nesting along the cliffs.

This unique combination of natural beauty and human ingenuity is what makes the path a must-visit attraction.

This is a complete sensory experience where you can hear the churning of the sea, feel the cool breeze blowing on your face, and admire the native seabirds that call this place home. There are some incredible views to be had here.

Bring a windbreaker because it can really pick up here!

Location: The Gobbins – 77-83 Gobbins Road, Larne

Views from Carrick-A-Rede Rope Bridge (Causeway Coastal Route)
Views from Carrick-A-Rede Rope Bridge (Causeway Coastal Route)
Carrick-A-Rede Rope Bridge (Causeway Coastal Route)
Carrick-A-Rede Rope Bridge (Causeway Coastal Route)
Carrick-A-Rede Rope Bridge (Causeway Coastal Route)
Carrick-A-Rede Rope Bridge (Causeway Coastal Route)

09:00 – Cross Carrick-A-Rede Rope Bridge

Bring your hiking shoes and a pinch (or gigantic heap) of courage to cross Carrick-A-Rede Rope Bridge, which links the mainland to the small island of Carraig a’ Ráid (Rock of the Casting).

Imagine a place where the sea roars below you. And the wind whispers tales of old. Suspended nearly 100 feet above the crashing waves of the Atlantic, the Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge challenges you to step out over the open sea as slink your way towards the tiny island of Carrickarede. The experience of crossing is nothing short of exhilarating. It’s the perfect blend of fear and excitement. However, I’m leaning more towards the fear camp.

It was once used by salmon fishermen to access their catch. Now it’s a major tourist attraction. Go figure.

Be warned that this is not for the faint-hearted as there have been instances where visitors have had to be taken off the island by boat because of intense fear of walking back across the bridge.

The suspension bridge, made of Douglas fir and wire, offers some of the best vantage points for landscape photos.

My one tip: keep your eyes fixed straight ahead.

Location: Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge – 119a Whitepark Rd, Ballycastle
Titanic Museum in Belfast
Titanic Museum in Belfast
Titanic Museum in Belfast
Titanic Museum in Belfast

10:00 – Titanic Belfast (Belfast)

If for some reason you only have time for one major attraction in Belfast, without any hesitation visit Titanic Belfast. Its proudly situated on the very slipways where she was built.

Voted the World’s Best Tourist Attraction at the World Travel Awards in 2016, the iconic building shaped like the bow of a ship, offers mesmerizing interactive experiences where you learn about the lives of the workers who built the Titanic along with the passengers and crew who made the fateful voyage.

Visiting is to embark on a journey back in time. Through nine interactive galleries, you’ll follow the Titanic from conception to tragic end. The experience is totally immersive. You’ll notice full-scale reconstructions, interactive displays, and haunting underwater footage of the wreck. It’s both educational and profoundly moving.

Its location is in the Titanic Quarter, a testament to Belfast’s shipbuilding heritage. You’ll gain insight into the city at the turn of the 20th century at the Harland and Wolff shipyard. This is where thousands of workers who built the Titanic.

The building itself is a sight to behold. Its design was inspired by the Titanic’s hull Its shimmering aluminum panels reflect the water and sky, changing with the weather and time of day. Inside, the atrium mirrors the Titanic’s grand staircase. You’ll gain an appreciation of its sense of scale and luxury. This attraction, more than any other, symbolizes Belfast’s regeneration and innovation.

Location: Titanic Belfast – 1 Olympic Way, Queens Road, Belfast (10 am to 5 pm daily)

St George's Market (Belfast)
St George’s Market (Belfast)
Food at St George's Market (Belfast)
Food at St George’s Market (Belfast)

11:00 – Have an Ulster Fry at St George’s Market

Whether you’re looking for a great local food experience or a tasty souvenir to take back home to friends, St George’s Market in Belfast is your best bet.

Come in the morning and have an Ulster Fry for brunch featuring soda bread, potato bread, back bacon, fried eggs, fried mushrooms, sausages, baked beans, hash browns and toast.

It’s a hearty, comforting dish that’ a piece of Northern Irish tradition. Each component is cooked in the same pan. This results in a symphony of flavors. You’ll find it both satisfying and soul-warming.

Boy oh boy, you’ll be satisfied afterwards. Maybe even a bit stuffed, if I’m being perfectly honest. You’ll most likely want to skip lunch! 😉

My tip? Share a table with locals. You’ll hear stories, receive recommendations, and perhaps even glean secrets to making the perfect Ulster Fry.

Location: St George’s Market – 12-20 East Bridge St, Belfast (Fri to Sun various hours)

12:00 – Take the Belfast Food Tour

With a burgeoning food scene that is impossible to conquer in mere days, the Belfast Food Tour is a great way to sample some of the best bites and drinks the city has to offer.

Their 4-hour guided walk takes you to some top food and drink spots around Belfast City Centre, plus they also offer gin and whisky tours if boozy tours are more your thing!

It’s not just about the food. You’ll cover a decent amount of Belfast in the process.

And to be perfectly honest, I can’t think of a better way to get acquainted than to nibble my away around a city.

Location: Taste and Tour NI – A1.01 Portview Trade Centre, 310 Newtownards Road, Belfast

13:00 – Have the fish at Harry’s Shack

Located on the beach, Harry’s Shack is THE spot for local seafood and fish. I had a hankering for fish and chips and it was the best I’ve had in Northern Ireland. Come for the food but consider the views, atmosphere and friendly service the cherry on top.

Its nestled on the sandy shores of Portstewart. It’s all about savoring the freshest fish. And with each bite you’ll be mesmerized by the sound of waves as your backdrop. Here you’ll gain a window into Northern Irish coastal life.

My only regret is that I didn’t have a chance to come back! That’s how good the food was.

Location: Harry’s Shack – 116 Strand Rd, Portstewart (Lunch & dinner hours vary Tues-Sun) 

Winterfell GOT Experience
Winterfell GOT Experience

14:00 – Winterfell GOT Experience

The Dark Hedges wasn’t the only GOT destination I visited. Game Of Thrones fans will be glad to know that you can visit Castle Ward to experience Winterfell by dressing up in costume and putting those archery skills to the test.

It’s an immersive journey through the iconic Northern stronghold of the Stark family. And a bucket-list adventure for fans and newcomers to the Seven Kingdoms. Here you walk through the very courtyards and along the paths where Jon Snow, Arya, Sansa, and Bran plotted, trained, and lived.

The attention to detail in recreating the sets is most impressive. From the towering walls of Winterfell to the intimate corners where pivotal scenes unfolded, it’s attention to detail. You’ll get a chance to try your hand at archery. This is the very spot where Jon Snow taught Bran the art. Guided tours reveal the secrets behind the filming. You’ll gain a deeper appreciation for the show’s groundbreaking achievement.

Location: Winterfell Castle & Demesne, Old Castle Ward, Park Road, Downpatrick

Belfast Street Art Tour
Belfast Street Art Tour
Belfast Street Art Tour
Belfast Street Art Tour

15:00 – Belfast Street Art Tour

I’ve visited many cities around the world with fascinating street art but nothing quite compares to Belfast. Join a tour with a local artist to discover the significance and meaning of various works of art as you stroll around Cathedral Quarter.

It’s impossible not to be drawn into its world. One of color, creativity, and expression that adorns its walls. However, street art in Belfast is not just decoration. It’s a dialogue with the city’s past, present, and future. It offers traveler’s a chance to understand the character, struggles, and spirit of Belfast.

Murals memorialize moments of conflict and celebrate figures of unity. Often they’re about distinct social and political currents that have shaped the city. Local and international artists contribute to this ever-evolving canvas. You’ll notice a range of styles from graffiti to elaborate murals.

Perhaps the most striking aspect of Belfast’s street art is its role as a voice for the community. Murals often arise from collaboration between artists and local residents. They reflect shared hopes, fears, and dreams. This community engagement ensures that the art remains relevant. This is far removed from the typical tourist trail. Walking these streets, you’ll gain an appreciation for the resilience and transformation of Belfast.

Location: Visit Belfast – 9 Donegall Square N, Belfast

Belfast Gin Gaunt
Belfast Gin Gaunt
Belfast Gin Gaunt
Belfast Gin Gaunt

16:00 – Belfast Gin Gaunt

I’ve become a big fan of gin in recent years and if you want to tickle your tastebuds, I’d suggest taking the Belfast Gin Gaunt to work your way around some of the best bars and pubs in the city.

In total, you visit 5 spots sampling 7 different gins including 3 that are locally made.

What makes gin such an important part of Belfast?

It’s about discovering the craft, stories, and people behind Belfast’s burgeoning gin scene. You’ll get the opportunity understand the distillation process. From selecting the perfect botanicals to the final pour. This makes it an educational experience that goes beyond the average tasting. It’s an opportunity to see, smell, and understand the process up close.

Of course, the highlight of any gin tour is the tasting session. Belfast’s gins are known for their unique profiles. Think distinct local botanicals. By taking a tour, you’ll leave with a greater appreciation for the spirit. So, raise your glass to Belfast whilst discovering its gin-making heritage.

Location: Taste and Tour NI – A1.01 Portview Trade Centre, 310 Newtownards Road, Belfast (Mon-Fri 9 am to 5 pm)

17:00 – Boom Board Tour (Derry)

Ever heard of boom boarding before? I hadn’t until visiting Derry.

Long-boarding originated in Hawaii when surfers wanted to take to the streets on wheels; today it’s also a fun way to tour Derry.

The 2-hour tour starts with a lesson in St Columb’s Park and then takes you to the streets and winds up at the famous Walled City Brewery where you can sample local brews coming out of the microdistillery.

So, what exactly is boom boarding?

Boom boarding involves using a longboard—a longer, more stable version of a skateboard—allowing for smoother ride. The “boom” denotes the sound of the wheels hitting the pavement. One of the best things about boom boarding is its accessibility to beginners. You’ll receive a brief training sessions to get you comfortable on the board. Although, If I’m being perfectly honest, I never felt that comfortable on it.

This type of experience offers unique perspective on the city’s sights. Gliding just above the ground you’ll experience the city in a vastly different manner from a typical walking or bus tour. An added bonus is that the tour leaves no carbon footprint. I hope you enjoy it more than I did. I spent most of my time trying not to face-plant.

Location: Far and Wild – St Columb’s Park House, 4 Limavady Rd, Londonderry

18:00 – Enjoy a craft beer tasting

If you’ve done even a quarter of what I’ve suggested in this article you’ll have worked up a ridiculous appetite at some point. To satisfy your hunger I suggest heading over to the Walled City Brewery in Derry for burgers and craft beers.

The setting of this place is most impressive. Located in a converted army barracks within sight of Derry’s historic walls, the brewery marries the past and the present in its ambiance. The interior pays homage to the building’s heritage. But yet it also has a welcoming aesthetic. It’s a place where the weight of history complements the spirit of innovation.

You’ll discover a range from hoppy IPAs to potent stouts. The burgers also are legendary! Come hungry. Or else you’ll be undoing your belt buckle.

Location: Walled City Brewery – Ebrington Square & Parade Ground, 70 Ebrington Street, Derry-Londonderry BT47 6FA, UK (+44 28 7134 3336)

Lough Navar Viewpoint (Co Fermanagh)
Lough Navar Viewpoint (Co Fermanagh)
Lough Navar Viewpoint (Co Fermanagh) Scenic views of forest and river
Lough Navar Viewpoint (Co Fermanagh) Scenic views of forest and river

19:00 – Visit Lough Navar Viewpoint

For a walk in the woods check out Lough Navar Forest where you’ll find numerous points of interest including views over Lower Lough Erne, Sperrin Mounts and the west coast of Donegal.

The Lough Navar Viewpoint stands as a testament to nature’s artistry. This hidden gem in Northern Ireland offers more than just a simple walk in the woods. You’ll get to experience the rugged beauty of Donegal’s west coast. It’s where winding paths lead you through a tapestry of green. Whilst its ancient trees whisper stories of the past. You’re invited to slow down and soak in the tranquility.

How about the views?

The panoramic views are simply unmatched. You’re treated to a sweeping outlook over Lower Lough Erne and the Sperrin Mountains. The grandeur of nature is on full display here. Behind the lens, the ever-changing light and vast landscapes present endless opportunities to capture the magic of the Irish countryside.

Location: Lough Navar Forest – Glennasheevar Rd, Derrygonnelly, Enniskillen

Outdoor Spa Experience (Co Fermanagh) Sauna stacked wood and resting area
Outdoor Spa Experience (Co Fermanagh) Sauna stacked wood and resting area
Outdoor Spa Experience (Co Fermanagh) River rivers
Outdoor Spa Experience (Co Fermanagh) River rivers

20:00 – Relax with an Outdoor Spa Experience

After that action-packed schedule, I was feeling ready to unwind and Finn Lough Resort proved to be the perfect spot. You can’t go wrong with a natural outdoor spa in a scenic backdrop.

I found myself in a deep state of relaxation. If you’ve been ticking off attractions like a madman use this as an opportunity to slow down. I sure did. And it helped me recharge for other activities.

Location: Finn Lough Resort – Letter Road, Leggs, Enniskillen BT93 2BB, UK (+44 28 6838 0360)

Sunset over Lough Erne (Fermanagh) glass of wine by a roaring fire outside
Sunset over Lough Erne (Fermanagh) glass of wine by a roaring fire outside
WIne and cheese at sunset over Lough Erne (Fermanagh)
WIne and cheese at sunset over Lough Erne (Fermanagh)

21:00 – Watch sunset over Lough Erne

After my spa experience, I went over to Lough Erne where I enjoyed nightfall over the lake, warmed up my toes over the fire pit, and munched on cheese whilst sipping on wine. It was a magic moment to wind down the day.

What makes Lough Erne so special?

One of Lough Erne’s most mesmerizing features is its collection of over 150 islands. For instance, there is a mysterious monastic site on Devenish Island. Or the wild beauty of White Island with its ancient stone figures. These islands offer a glimpse into both the natural and historical richness of the area.

Lough Erne is a sanctuary for wildlife and nature enthusiasts. The lake’s clean waters and surrounding habitats are home to an abundance of birds, otters, and even the elusive pine marten. Visitors can witness the vibrant ecosystem of Lough Erne up close. It’s a place where the hustle of the outside world fades away.

Location: Finn Lough Resort – Letter Road, Leggs, Enniskillen BT93 2BB, UK (+44 28 6838 0360)

22:00 – Go to Cathedral Quarter for nightlife

The cobbled streets of Cathedral Quarter in Belfast are your best for nightlife when the plethora of bars and pubs become packed on a weekend night. Here you can party the night away while enjoying live music on the streets and raising a pint with friendly locals.

What makes Cathedral Quarter an epic nightlife experience?

Cathedral Quarter brims with an eclectic mix of bars, pubs, and venues. Here you’ll find traditional Irish pubs where the music spills out onto the streets. And if you’re feeling a little bit fancy, contemporary bars serve up innovative cocktails. There’s just an energy here that’s infectious. It draws you in with promises of fun and distinct memories.

Live Music and Entertainment?

A highlight of Cathedral Quarter’s nightlife is its live music scene. Whether you’re into indie, rock, traditional Irish, or jazz, you’re covered. You’ve got intimate gigs in cozy pubs to vibrant performances on larger stages. Cathedral Quarter is also a haven for foodies looking for late-night bites. You’ll find everything from gourmet to street food nibbles.

However, what truly sets the Cathedral Quarter apart is the unmistakable warmth of Northern Irish hospitality. Here, strangers quickly become friends. You’ll feel like you’re at home.

Location: Royal Avenue and the Dunbar Link 

Love Fish (Belfast) Seafood platter
Love Fish (Belfast) Seafood platter

23:00 – Have a late night dinner at Love Fish

For a seafood feast of feasts, head over to Deanes Love Fish which serves a seafood platter for the ages. My plate was loaded with tasty bites from the sea and I couldn’t help but indulge in a little bit of everything.

In my opinion, there’s something magical about tucking into a late-night dinner. Especially, if it involves seafood. My seafood platter was so abundant and diverse, I felt like ocean at my fingertips. Imagine a plate brimming with a diverse range of fresh delicious seafood. Truly a celebration of the sea’s rich offerings!

Located on Howard Street, the restaurant offers a cozy yet sophisticated ambiance. I couldn’t recommend it more!

Location: Deanes Love Fish – 30-36 Howard StreetBelfast

24:00 – Moonlight Kayaking (Derry)

Last but not least, to wrap up this Northern Ireland itinerary, consider a moonlight kayaking experience. Not only is it a good workout but you’ll also have an opportunity to spot wildlife you wouldn’t otherwise see during the day. Some of the highlights include Peace Bridge in Derry, Magilligan Fort and the Roe River under the Binevenagh Mountain.

What makes this experience worth doing?

It’s an extraoridinary adventure. This unique experience combines kayaking with the enchanting atmosphere of the night. Kayaking under the moonlight offers a completely different perspective on some of Derry’s most iconic landmarks. Imagine paddling near the Peace Bridge. Its structure illuminated against the night sky. Or gliding past the historic Magilligan Fort. You get to experience the gentle flows of the Roe River under the shadow of Binevenagh Mountain.

You may even be lucky enough to spot nocturnal creatures going about their nightly routines. The stillness of the night, combined with the minimal disturbance from the kayaks, makes this an ideal way to observe it all.

Final Thoughts: Epic Journey Through Northern Ireland

It’s hard to believe our journey is over. Northern Ireland in 24 amazing experiences!

From the rugged cliffs that have stood the test of time to the warm smiles that greet you in every town, Northern Ireland is a crowd pleaser. Savour each experience. Whether it’s standing atop the Giant’s Causeway, exploring the haunting beauty of the Dark Hedges, or simply enjoying a pint with new friends.

Northern Ireland is a storyteller’s dream. A place where you can walk in the footsteps of giants. And chase the ghosts of the past. What truly sets Northern Ireland apart is its people. The warmth of the welcome here is unmatched. Northern Ireland, with its 24 amazing experiences, is just the beginning of an adventure that continues to unfold, an invitation to return that’s impossible to resist.

Location: Far and Wild – St Columb’s Park House, 4 Limavady Rd, Londonderry

Have you been to Northern Ireland?
What are some of your favourite experiences there?

The trip was brought to you as part of the #lovegreatbritain campaign, created and managed by iambassador in partnership with Visit Britain and Discover Northern Ireland.

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  1. says: Chaminda Joseph

    Ireland is already at the top of my bucket list, and I can’t wait to visit!Wow, everything appears to be very mysterious! continue to share with us

  2. says: David Murdoch

    One of the highlights of a trip to Northern Ireland is to visit the Ards Peninsula (about 10 miles south of Belfast). Begin with driving or walking up Scrabo Hill just outside of Newtownards and then going up to the top of the Scrabo Tower – on a good day you can see the whole of County Down, Belfast City, across the Irish Sea to the Isle of Man and the coast of Scotland.
    Later a leisurely drive down the peninsula road towards the village of Portaferry, with Strangford Lough on your right hand side. It is the largest sea inlet in the British Isles, covering 150 km², full of bird life and in places seal colonies. On the left is the jewel in the crown of the National Trust – Mount Stewart (Voted as one of the top ten gardens in the world, Mount Stewart reflects a rich tapestry of design and planting artistry bearing the hallmark of its creator. Edith, Lady Londonderry’s passion for bold planting schemes coupled with the mild climate of Strangford Lough allows rare and tender plants from across the globe to thrive in this celebrated garden, and some really quirky sculptures to be seen.)
    Beyond Mount Stewart is the village of Greyabbey, with the ruins of a Norman Cistercian monastery at one end and a host of antique shops at the other; as well as several places to enjoy a lunch.
    The next village Kircubbin now boasts a new distillery called ‘Echlinville’ which can be toured. They have produced award winning gin and poitin whiskey.
    The final destination is the quaint village of Portaferry with its aquarium.
    And that is only one side of the peninsula… You can either explore the other side, the Irish Sea coastline, or cross the Lough by ferry to the historic Strangford village and explore into St Patrick’s Country and head south towards Newcastle and the world famous Mountains of Mourne.
    We have explored this area over several visits and believe me when I say that it is a world apart from the hustle and bustle of Belfast City.

  3. Yes.
    I’m British so Belfast isn’t that far however, there’s a slight snag since I actually live in Berlin!

    The last time I went to Belfast was about 13 years ago though. Eek!
    I was just looking for somewhere to go over the summer, when easyJet popped up with a flight from Berlin to Belfast for €8.00!

    Er. Yes please!
    After that, I just decided that we might as well visit the rest of Ireland, especially since my stepmum is half English / half Irish and her dad came from the “Old Country” so to speak, so off we went!

    I’m a Game of Thrones freak but GOT wasn’t a thing then, more the Titanic, which I love anyway!

    ‘Nice one mate!

  4. Wow the dark hedges look amazing!! I can’t wait to go one day. Also, I didn’t even realize it was possible to sleep in a haunted castle! Though, I imagine you can’t do much sleeping….

  5. says: Glenn

    Big Game of Thrones fan here. I would love to geek out at some of these spots. That coastal scenery is also breathtaking! Thanks for this cool guide.

  6. says: Tash M

    Cheers for this Article! It looks as though there is a lot of exciting activities in Northern Ireland. The Giant’s Causeway would be out of this world at sunrise!

  7. says: Jade

    I am soo jealous! Northern Ireland has been on my Travel List for awhile but I am still on my Asian countries list, I can’t wait to go there!

  8. says: Ryan

    Wicked guide, I really want to hit the dark hedges and Ballygally…been meaning to get over to Ireland for ages now but I never do, even though I go to the UK every year and it’s so close. This year I really need to make it a point, and definitely going to try to hit some of these on the guide. Plus…fellow GoT nerd…so I really need to!

  9. says: Mike

    What a spectacular adventure, Sam! This was so much fun to read! Sorry I’ve been out of touch for such a long time my friend! Hockey season is coming up! 🙂

  10. says: David

    Wow! seems like you enjoyed a lot. In next summer I am planning to go to Amsterdam and Barcelona, but after reading this I am planning to go Ireland too. Thanks Samuel.