Belfast isn’t one of those places people have on their bucket list to visit. It definitely wasn’t on mine – especially when it’s the first ‘proper’ holiday with hubby. I say proper because going to Nigeria every year for me is not a holiday.
Flying to Belfast was one of those spur of the moment decisions you make and just go with it, but it turns out to be more than you actually expected. The Mr was headed there on business and due to major FOMO, I tagged along. To my surprise,this little gem of a place surpassed my expectations. Though we were only there for one night only, what I packed for us to do was absolutely fun.
The fact that it was our first trip without the kids, meant I wanted it to be a relaxing break. Belfast is home to quite a few spa retreats, however, because of the festive period and the last minute nature of the trip, all the ‘top’ spa retreats were fully booked.
I booked for us to stay at the Hilton Templepatrick, which is about 12miles away from the city centre. Ideally, I would have booked for us to stay at the 5* Culloden Estate and Spa but due to unavailability we couldn’t stay there. In hindsight, had we stayed there, I would have stayed couped up in the hotel because it had so much to offer that a one night’s stay wouldn’t have sufficed.
Belfast is one of those cities you either fall head over heels in love with or totally hate. There is no inbetween. Mr O who relishes the hustle and bustle of London hated it. At any given chance, he would tease the city for how close everything was or how there was only one shopping centre. Though I could not live there, for me Belfast was a nice break from London. The familiarity of the locals was beyond refreshing. Everywhere we went, people would strike up conversations – as in actual back and forth and not a quick chit chat about the weather. For that, I appreciated Belfast.
One of my least favourite things about the trip though was the weather. I really should have been prepared for it but really I wasn’t. It was cold AF. I found myself in a situation I could never have imagined. When it snows in London, we get happy and literally celebrate the snow. In Belfast, this is a regularity. Upon our arrival, I put on the news (as you do) and the first thing I saw was the weather warning – high chance of snow. This however did’t dampen my plans. As small as it is there are quite a few things you can do in Belfast.
Visit Titanic Belfast
This is probably Belfast’s most popular attraction. Visitors can relive the Titanic story direct from its source. The Titanic Quarter is a regeneration scheme that boasts apartments, restaurants and a hotel with a waterfront view. Within the regeneration area is the Titanic Belfast where guests can hear, feel and see things that links back to the original Titanic. Prices start from £18 for adults.
Stay in a spa resort
The aforementioned Culloden Resort and Hilton Templepatrick and just some of Belfast’s spa resort. They have quite a few reasonably priced spas scattered across. So whether you want somewhere close to the city centre or you want somewhere far out where you feel secluded, they have something for you. Prices are dependent on various factors like the treatment you want, how many people etc.
I vlogged our trip and in the video I said how where ever I go, all roads lead to Zara. If like me you are a shopaholic who has to visit a shopping centre no matter where you go then this is for you. I visited some of my favourite shops when I was in Belfast. In quite of few of the stores items that I wanted but were sold online and in all London stores were sat waiting for me to purchase. 🙂
Belfast City Hall
If you are a history buff then a visit to Belfast City Hall leaving feel happy and educated. Located on Donegall square, this ancient building still boasts it’s architectural appeal. There is free visitor’s exhibition that will teach you all of the city’s history. You can also visit the Titanic Memorial Garden where you can see the Belfast List.