Cheap flights to Belfast are available from Manchester Airport, as well as Luton, Gatwick, Stansted and Heathrow airports near London. Flights to Belfast arrive at either Belfast International Airport or George Best Belfast City Airport. Taxis are available for hire just outside the lobby of Belfast International Airport. Airport Express 300 provides services to Belfast, stopping at a few destinations in between. Tickets can be purchased from the bus driver or the tourist information desk in the arrivals hall. Passengers arriving at George Best Airport can hire taxis from the taxi ranks outside the terminal building. Airport Express and Airporter both operate bus services to Belfast city centre. Trains to Central and Victoria Street Stations are available from Sydenham station. Shuttle bus services are available outside the terminal to ferry passengers to Sydenham railway station.
London-style black taxis can be flagged down around the city centre. Minicabs are plentiful, and can be hired ahead of time if required. Translink Metro operates an efficient network of bus services around the city. Single tickets can be purchased from the bus driver, from the Metro Kiosk at Donegal Square West or from the Belfast Welcome Centre. Day Tickets are available for unlimited daily trips on buses. Smartlink cards work in one of two ways – Multi-Journey (MJ) cards allow a certain number of journeys, while TravelCards allow a week or month of unlimited travel. Both types of ticket can be used on all Metro journeys. Day Tickets and Smartlink cards can also be purchased online and topped up at the Metro Kiosk and Smartlink Agents.
Belfast’s compact proportions make it the ideal getaway for a city break. Explore the fairytale spires of Belfast Castle, which sits atop scenic Cave Hill. Cave Hill itself has some splendid hiking trails and pleasing views of the city. The Titanic Quarter takes its name from the ill-fated liner – visitors here can take in the Titanic Boat Tour and discover how she was built. The striking St. Anne’s Cathedral takes pride of place in the city centre. Scattered throughout the city, the Belfast Murals act as a stirring reminder of the city’s political divisions and troubled past.
St. George’s Market is a treasure trove of antiques, handmade goods, fresh produce, preserves and local meats. The market runs from Friday to Sunday every week. Smithfield Market has a variety of shops selling collectable toys, antiques and secondhand items, as well as a café and international grocery stores. The Stiff Kitten is a trendy club that often brings in top DJs and hip bands. The historic Kitchen Bar is a delightful spot to enjoy a drink with the locals. Maggie Mays is one of Belfast’s most popular cafes – its extensive menu features all-day breakfasts, plenty of burgers and sandwiches, and a choice of hearty desserts. It’s the place to nurse your hangover after a heavy night on the tiles. Molly’s Yard is a casual, elegant restaurant with a selection of Modern Irish dishes.