With the ongoing COVID-19 crisis heavily restricting travel abroad, now is the time to fully explore the beauty of the United Kingdom. With a unique culture, beautiful landscape and fascinating history, Northern Ireland offers a holiday experience you won’t find elsewhere in the British Isles. Here are four must-visit attractions to help you plan your trip to Northern Ireland.
1. Titanic Belfast
Titanic Belfast, located on the very shipyard on which the Titanic was built, is an immersive experience that brings to life the power and tragedy of the world’s most famous ship. You can explore the shipyard to learn more about all the industries involved in making the Titanic and walk on the last remaining White Star vessel, the SS Nomadic. Inside the museum, nine interactive galleries tell the story of the Titanic, its disastrous maiden voyage and the people who lost their lives, complete with special effects, dark rides and artefacts. Named the World’s Leading Visitor’s Attraction in 2016, Titanic Belfast is a must-visit museum for every history buff.
2. Game of Thrones filming location tour
Northern Ireland firmly established itself as a world class filming location by providing some of the most iconic settings in Westeros in the Game of Thrones television series. If you’re a fan of Game of Thrones, make sure you don’t leave Northern Ireland without having taken a Game of Thrones filming location tour. You will see famous locations such as the Dark Hedges, an eerie avenue of beech trees planted in the eighteenth century by the aristocratic Stuart family, used as the King’s Road on Game of Thrones. Another popular location is the Cushenden Caves, where Melisandre gave birth to the Shadow Baby that eventually killed Renly Baratheon. Led by a knowledgeable guide, you will learn all about the real-life history behind famous Westeros locations.
3. Giant’s Causeway
The Giant’s Causeway, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is one of the most recognisable images of Northern Ireland. With the wild North Atlantic Ocean on one side and dramatic cliffs on the other, the Giant’s Causeway’s outstanding beauty will take your breath away. Created by volcanic eruptions 60 million years ago, the basalt columns were once believed to have been built by the Irish giant Fionn mac Cumhaill as a causeway to neighbouring Scotland when he was challenged to a fight by the Scottish giant Benandonner.
4. Glenns of Antrim
Northern Ireland is not short of natural beauty. The nine green glens that make up the Glens of Antrim each have their own distinct feel and folklore. Make sure you visit Glenariff which, with its wild beauty, waterfalls and trail dangerously close to a sheer gorge, is known as the ‘queen of the glens’. You can even see Scotland from the coastal road on a clear day. The Glenns of Antrim are also famous for their festivals. If you visit in August, don’t miss the Heart of the Glens festival, where partygoers sing and dance from morning until night.