Departs from the 'Old Stone Church' on Suffolk Street, daily at 8 am
Please arrive 10 mins before departure!
Dublin has a lot to offer, but if you feel you have been there, done that, why not hop aboard and take a trip to historical Belfast, just 2 hours up the road? See one of Irelands 7 Wonders 'The Belfast Peace Wall'. In addition you will see the amazing countryside that Northern Ireland has to offer, and you will stop at various sites of historic significance on this amazing Belfast tour from Dublin.
Our guides are keen to make your day interesting and informative, each adding their own humour and knowledge to the mix. We will tell you all about Northern Ireland while you can just sit back and enjoy the view. No guidebooks needed on this trip!
After a short coffee break along the way, your first stop is Belfast City. We do a political / historical guided tour of the city, visiting some of the political hotspots, as well as visiting the Republican Museum. There-after you will have some free time to explore the city and have some lunch, and maybe change some money to Pound Stirling, as you are now in the United Kingdom! Then we visit the Belfast dockyards- birth place of the Titanic - before we continue the rest of our northern adventure!
We have some more exciting stops to show you before we cross back over the border. Next we visit Downpatrick and the grave of St Patrick. Here you will be shown the amazing cathedral and exhibition centre. Then on to the Norman castle at Dundrum before we make a stop to take in the spectacular views of the Mourne mountains. Ask your guide to show you the famous 'Gravity Hill'! Before we hit the motorway, we make one last stop at Ross’ monument dedicated to Major General Robert Ross, the man who burned down the White House.
On the way back down the motorway you can reminisce about your day’s adventure to Northern Ireland while listening to some traditional music along the way - What a jam packed day - Phew!
Your one day tour of Belfast departs from the Suffolk street tourist office (outside the old stone church). Your guide will do a quick introduction of the tour and will make sure that everybody is happy and ready to go! We will be driving through the northern suburbs of town, passing some interesting sites on the way, which your friendly guide will tell you more of, for instance Croke Park- Home of Gaelic Games, Dublin Airport's new 2nd terminal and the controversy surrounding it, and the Dublin Port tunnel that was built too small for the larger trucks to use! You will also get a quick overview on the politics of the North, but more so when in Belfast. If the so called "troubles" era in Northern Ireland is of interest to you, have a look at our "Politics" section where we explain more about the origins of this conflict.
Welcome to Belfast City! We start our drive around West Belfast which is home to the famous 'The Peace Wall' which divides the republician and loylist communities. This is a sort of peace line between these two factions. Here it will be explained why the troubles started and how relations are today. The wall murals tell their own story from both sides of the fence... (See our "politics" section for more details). We visit the Republican Museum, with a large collection of artifacts and prison handicrafts, representing various phases of the struggle for Irish Freedom. It also has a library for research and audiovisual aids. We are the only tour from Dublin that has access to the facilities, making it a unique experience! (Please note that this is closed on Sunday and Monday).
Now you have some time to grab something to eat, and look around on your own. Some suggestions maybe:
• Visit the Crown Liquor Saloon with its wooden partitions and ornate Victorian exterior, where you can show your political preference by walking either over the crown at the front entrance, or walk around it.
• Visit the Grand Opera house, or otherwise visit St. Anne's cathedral (also known as Belfast Cathedral) if culture is your thing, and find out more about its "Black Santa" or listen to its pipe organ play- the largest in Northern Ireland.
• Look out for the Albert Memorial Clock, Belfast's own leaning clock tower!
• If you are really a history fanatic, try the Linen Hall Library. It is the oldest library in Belfast, and renowned for its extensive Irish and Local Studies Collection, which ranges from Early Belfast and Ulster printed books and includes 250,000 items in the Northern Ireland Political Collection, which is the definitive archive of the recent troubles.
• City Hall on Donegal square is a landmark site. Its great dome will have you thinking of the White House. Incidentally this is also the site from which bill Clinton addressed the people of Northern Ireland in 1995.
We now depart for a introduction to East Belfast, home of the Harland & Wolff shipyard and birthplace of the Titanic, before heading south to the resting place of the Patron Saint of Ireland: Saint Patrick.
We arrive at Downpatrick and we first visit the St Patrick Centre which tells the story of Saint Patrick. Here you will walk through the exhibition and then be shown a film all about Saint Patrick’s life. When you finish here you will be taken on a short walk to Down Cathedral and shown the last resting place of the great man who it is said, brought Christianity to Ireland.
Our next stop is at the small seaside village of Dundrum and the Norman castle which sits on high ground built by John De Courcy in the 12th century. This is a fascinating stronghold which has a circular defence tower inside strong fortified walls. It is a ruin today but you can climb to the top of the fort walls and see the amazing views for miles.
From Dundrum your guide will take you to Northern Ireland’s largest mountain range called the Mourne Mountains. You will stop at an area of outstanding beauty and gaze up at the highest peak called Slieve Donard. Before you leave ask your guide to show you 'gravity hill' where you'll see your bus roll 'up' a hill all by itself!!
Sadly we must depart the beautiful Mourne Mountains and start to make our way back down to Dublin. You'll enjoy chatting and reminiscing about your days adventure to Northern Ireland while you listen to some traditional music along the way! You should arrive back in Dublin at about 19:30hrs.