With foodie festivals, cultural delights, big gigs and big nights all on the bill, Belfast is the perfect spot for a city break for the couple that wants a weekend away but still wants to make the most of their time off the clock.
Read our guide, as we take you through the city’s unmissable events and attractions and coolest food and drink hotspots, for a memorable city break in Belfast this autumn.
24 September – 5 October
Belly Laughs, Belfast’s comedy festival is celebrating its 4th year with an action packed programme that is guaranteed to leave you in fits of laughter and plenty of smiles on your faces.
Belfast Restaurant Week
4 – 11 October
Declaring itself ‘a tasty celebration of local food and events in fabulous restaurants across the city’, Belfast Restaurant Week will see some of the city’s best restaurants will be serving up special dishes and hosting spectacular foodie events at unique locations through the week.
31 October – 18 January
Belfast’s premier arts venue, The MAC, will this autumn host a major exhibition following an international art prize competition, that offered professional artists worldwide the opportunity to exhibit their art in the venue for MAC International.
This free of charge exhibition, will offer visitors the very best in contemporary visual art including sculpture, painting, photography, film, installation and performance.
Belfast Festival at Queen’s
16 October – 1 November
The 2014 Ulster Bank Festival at Queen’s returns for another year combining an extensive line-up of music, drama, theatre, talks, film, dance and comedy amongst a chock full programme. With so much happening, it is set to be the best year yet!
In partnership with the festival, Translink are putting on a ‘Festival Express’ from Dublin to Belfast for £100 including relaxing first class travel on the train, one nights B&B in the 4* Europa Hotel and the best seats in the house at the festival.
For more information on this great offer visit www.belfastfestival.com
From Bolshoi to Belfast
17 October – 13 December
Perhaps the world’s most renowned ballet company and opera producer, Bolshoi presents a unique exhibition – From Bolshoi to Belfast – showcasing costumes that have never been seen before outside of Russia. The exhibition tells the story of how the traditional costumes of the people are re-imagined into the famous 20th century ballet and opera designs.
Sound of Belfast
12 – 16 November
Belfast’s flagship music centre – the Oh Yeah Music Centre – has teamed up with a number of leading music organisations to organise a week of live performances, workshops with music experts and development sessions for aspiring artists and much, much more as part of Sound of Belfast.
With a community festival and live music sessions for all ages throughout the city, it promises to showcase the city’s bustling music scene.
Belfast’s Top Attractions
The cultural experience doesn’t end here though – why not check out some of Belfast’s top attractions such as:
Titanic Belfast – Discover the legend of the RMS Titanic on the very ground where she was designed and built, up until her maiden voyage in 1912.
SS Nomadic – Known as Titanic’s little sister, the Nomadic is the only White Star Liner left in the world.
St. George Market – One of the city’s oldest attractions, the weekend markets display and sell fantastic Northern Ireland produce, arts and craft.
Black Taxi Tours - If you want to learn more about this vibrant city, then let the locals tell you on a guided taxi tour.
With so many eateries on offer, Belfast really is a foodie’s paradise, with such a huge range of delicious delights from local dishes to the more exotic, some of our favourites include:
St. Anne’s Square – Located in the Cathedral Quarter, the square is home to a number of fabulous restaurants including local hotspot Coppi.
Ox – Overlooking the River Lagan, Ox offers fine dining at excellent value.
Alley Cat – if you’re looking more something more relaxed, then a trip to Alley Cat is must, serving fantastic burgers and a great selection of world beers.
Café Havana – For the exotic side, head to Belfast’s first Cuban styled café/bistro.
Mourne Seafood Bar – Seafood lovers will not want to miss the opportunity to dine at one of the best seafood restaurants in Northern Ireland.
The cultural experience doesn’t end when the sun goes down, whether you’re looking for a cosy spot to unwind or a big night out, Belfast has a cracking selection of bars and clubs to suit all.
Duke of York – Found along the cobbled street of Commercial Court, the Duke of York is a popular spot amongst locals and visitors with its old traditional décor. It’s also where Snow Patrol played their first every gig.
Spaniard Bar – For some quirky cocktails, look no further than the Spaniard, another bar favourite for its unique style.
Muriel’s Café – Gin lovers will not want to miss a stop off at Muriel’s, home to one of the most extensive drink selections within the city.
Black Box / Limelight – These two venues are perfect for those who love music and live performances.
Bert’s Bar – Located within Belfast’s famous 5* Merchant Hotel, enjoy the sweet melody of jazz as you relax in this world famous hotel.
Belfast on a Budget
You don’t have to break the bank to have a great weekend in Belfast. We’ve put together a handy guide to 10 things to do in the city for £10 – find out more here: discovernorthernireland.com/blog/belfast-on-a-budget/
With so much on offer in Belfast this autumn, now is the perfect time to book a getaway in this vibrant city, with accommodation offers starting from €63 per room* you’ll be crazy not to book.
For more information on Belfast visit: http://www.discovernorthernireland.com/belfast/