Belfast City Tour
|05 May 2023 |
Ends 09 May 2023 • 5 days
|07 September 2023 |
Ends 11 September 2023 • 5 days
|11 May 2024 |
Ends 16 May 2024 • 6 days
|13 September 2024 |
Ends 18 September 2024 • 6 days
Belfast City Tour | Short Tour for Seniors
Explore the city of Belfast on a short small group tour with Odyssey Traveller.
Belfast, capital city of Northern Ireland in the United Kingdom, takes its name from the Gaelic Béal Feirste ("mouth of the sandbank"). The city has seen human settlement since the Stone Age, but its modern history began when Baron Arthur Chichester built a castle in 1611 and encouraged the growth of the town. Belfast received its charter of incorporation in 1613, and it blossomed into an important commercial and industrial centre in the 17th century. It was home to a busy port and shipyard and became one of the greatest linen production centres in the world. Since the Industrial Revolution, Belfast's chief shipbuilding firm has been Harland and Wolff, which built the ill-fated Titanic. The issue of home rule divided the city, turning Belfast into the site of intense riots in the 19th century and the violence of "The Troubles" during the late 20th century. The three-decade conflict between nationalists and unionists led to bombings and street riots, giving Belfast the reputation as a dangerous city in the 1970s and 80s. After the peace accord (Good Friday Agreement of 1998), Belfast transformed to regain its place as an economic and cultural powerhouse in Northern Ireland, welcoming visitors interested to learn more about its rich history and see its main sights.
This small group tour is offered to travellers who are seeking a five-day extension in the city as part of an Odyssey Traveller escorted small group tour.
The tour stays in a centrally located hotel in Belfast. Each day we set out to explore various parts of the city, typically using public transport, taxis and the rail network to reach the destinations selected, taking in 2-3 key features or attractions of the city. We will be aided by knowledgeable, local guides who share the ancient, classical, and recent history of the city with the group as we explore.
Typical Highlights of the Belfast Short Tour:
- Titanic Belfast is the world's largest Titanic visitor experience, an award-winning attraction located at the very place where the RMS Titanic was designed, built, and launched in 1912. This attraction, using special effects and full-scale reconstructions, tells the story of Belfast's shipbuilding industry and the tragic maiden voyage of the great ship.
- Located on the east side of Belfast City Hall is the Titanic Memorial Garden, commemorating the 1,512 people who perished in the Titanic tragedy. The city hall itself is an iconic building, which offers one-hour tours. The Belfast City Hall is illuminated at night in a variety of colours and combinations of lights.
- The Linen Hall Library is the oldest library in Belfast, renowned for its Irish and Local Studies Collection with a definitive archive of "The Troubles". The library is housed in a Victorian-era linen warehouse.
- Learn more about Northern Ireland by exploring the Ulster Museum.
- One of the city's oldest attraction is the St. George Market. Though completed in 1896, there has been a Friday market at this site since 1604. Go shopping for fresh fish and sample the variety of produce on display.
- Go on a guided campus tour of Queen's University, founded in 1845.
- View the Romanesque Belfast Cathedral.
- Stroll through the 17th century Antrim Castle Gardens.
- To travellers who want to go on a longer walk, there is the Stormont Estate with its woodland park dotted with historic buildings and memorials.
- Climb up to the Dome at Victoria Square for a stunning view of the Belfast skyline.
Odyssey has published the following articles
To assist you with your planning and touring around Ireland and Northern Ireland, then the following articles may be of interest.
Articles of interest from external sites
The following links to External sites provide some good history and an understanding of the city of Belfast.
- 12 places to take the best photographs in Belfast - Visit Belfast
- The Belfast Agreement/Good Friday Agreement 1998 | Northern ...education.niassembly.gov.uk
- The Ultimate Guide to Belfast - a cultural food and drink gem
Odyssey has more information about Northern Ireland to read.
Day 1: Belfast
Day 2: Belfast
Day 3: Belfast
Day 4: Belfast
Day 5: Belfast
Includes / Excludes
What’s included in our Tour
- 5 nights of hotel accommodation.
- 5 breakfasts and 2 dinners.
- All entry fees and services of local expert/guide where relevant.
- Services of a Tour Leader for the duration of tour.
- Gratuities and necessary tips.
- Detailed preparatory information.
What’s not included in our Tour
- Comprehensive travel insurance.
- Return economy class international airfare and departure taxes.
- Items of a personal nature, such as telephone calls and laundry.
- Meals not specified in the itinerary.
Participants must be able to carry their own luggage, climb and descend stairs, moderate walking on uneven surfaces between 3 - 5 kilometers per day. Suitable for most fitness levels
Make it a private tour
Easing your journey
Crossing international borders with restrictions
The list of requirements to travel internationally has changed and will continue to change for several years. Odyssey is here to assist you in managing your way through these requirements:
For more information see our Crossing international borders with restrictions page.
Book With Confidence
If less than 30 days before your tour starts you are unable to travel as a result of Government travel restrictions, Odyssey Traveller will assist you with a date change, provide you with a credit or process a refund for your booking less any non-recoverable costs.
See Terms and conditions for details.
Peace of Mind Travel
The safety of our travellers, tour leader, local guide and support staff has always been our top priority and with the new guidelines for public health and safety for keeping safe for destinations around the world, we’ve developed our plan to give you peace of mind when travelling with us.
See Peace of Mind Travel for details.
Reading List Download PDF
Belfast: Toward a City Without Walls
In Belfast: Toward a City Without Walls Vicky Cosstick tells the story of Belfast s 100 sectarian walls and interfaces, now the last in Europe, which remain fifteen years after the Good Friday Agreement of 1998, and she asks for how much longer these physical signs and symbols of sectarianism and the Troubles will disfigure the cityscape.The walls are important as both memorials to the conflict and a reminder of the unfinished nature of the peace process; however, in May 2013, the First Minister and deputy First Minister of Northern Ireland made a commitment to bring them down by 2023. This book tells the compelling stories of the complex network of people and the different communities and agencies that are involved in maintaining peace at the interfaces and working towards a city without walls, and draws an intricate picture of how peace is being worked out in the current life of the city.This uniquely researched portrait of a post-conflict peace process provides a real time picture of the complex process by which constructive change is happening.Fascinating in their variety, the walls and fences at the center of this story are illustrated by the evocative and insightful photography of Frankie Quinn.REVIEWS "Her book examines how progress could be made through dialogue, regeneration, through art and architecture, with the help of the communities, the former paramilitaries, the politicians, the churches, and through business and tourism...Wearing her academic hat she refers to complexity theory which, she says, points to 'small, gradual changes resulting in big effects'." - Gerry Moriarty, The Irish Times"
By Vicky CosstickAmazon
Belfast Days: A 1972 Teenage Diary
Belfast 1972. It’s the bloodiest year of the Northern Irish ‘Troubles’ and sixteen-year-old Eimear O’Callaghan, a Catholic schoolgirl in Andersonstown, West Belfast, bears witness in her new diary. What follows is a unique and touching perspective into the daily life of an ordinary teenager coming of age in extraordinary times. The immediacy of the diary entries are complemented with the author’s mature reflections written forty years later. The result is poignant, shocking, wryly funny and above all, explicitly honest.
This unique publication comes at a time when Northern Ireland is desperately struggling to come to terms with the legacy of its turbulent past. It provides a powerful juxtaposition of the ordinary, everyday concerns of a sixteen-year-old girl – who could be any girl in any British or Irish city at this time, worrying about her hair, exams, clothes, discos – with the unimaginable horror of a society slowly disintegrating before her eyes, a seemingly inevitable descent into a bloody civil war, fuelled by sectarianism, hatred and fear.
Written by an experienced broadcaster and journalist, Belfast Days demonstrates how one person’s examination of her own ‘story’, upon rediscovering her 1972 diary on the eve of the publication of the Saville Report, provided her with a new perspective on one of the darkest periods in twentieth century British and Irish history.
By Eimear O'CallaghanAmazon
Former soldier Ken Wharton witnessed the troubles in Northern Ireland first hand. Bloody Belfast is a fascinating oral history given a chilling insight into the killing grounds of Belfast’s streets. Wharton’s work is based on first hand accounts from the soldiers. The reader can walk the darkened, dangerous streets of the Lower Falls, the Divis Flats and New Lodge alongside the soldiers who braved the hate-filled mobs on the newer, but no less violent streets of the ‘Murph, Turf Lodge and Andersonstown. The author has interviewed UDR soldier Glen Espie who survived being ambushed and shot by the IRA not once, but twice and Army Dog Handler Dougie Durrant, who, through the incredible ability of his dog, tracked an IRA gunman fresh from the murder of a soldier to where he was sitting in a hot bath in the Turf Lodge, desperately trying to wash away the forensic evidence.
By KEN WHARTONAmazon
Fifty Years On: The Troubles and the Struggle for Change in Northern Ireland
An evocative memoir that explores the Troubles in Northern Ireland and their legacy, published to coincide with the 50th anniversary of the start of the armed violence that marked the beginning of this period. August 2019 marks the 50th anniversary of an eruption of armed violence that traumatised Northern Ireland and transformed a period of street protest over civil rights into decades of paramilitary warfare by republicans and loyalists, the Troubles. One night of street gun battles led to the British army being ordered in to keep the peace. Belfast would look like a battlefield for a whole generation growing up there.
In this evocative memoir, Malachi O'Doherty recounts his experiences of living through the three decades of the Troubles and the subsequent peace process. Incorporating interviews with political, professional and paramilitary figures, he draws a profile of an era that produced violent trauma, comparing and contrasting it with today and asks how frail is the current peace as Brexit approaches, politics are deadlocked and violence is simmering in both republican and loyalist camps.
By Malachi O'DohertyAmazon
Belfast in 3 Days (Travel Guide 2020)
By getting this travel guide to Belfast, you will get:
- Exact information on what is the best hotel to stay in Belfast, so that you will be in the best area of Belfast for all activities, without breaking the bank.
- Exact information on what to do every hour of the day.
- Where to Eat: What are the best restaurants that locals go to.
- What dishes to try. A simple culinary guide with the top 10 dishes and drinks.
- Where to go out in the evening. Only the top suggestion for each day for one bar or a club.
- How to move from the airport to the hotel with the most budget-friendly way.
- What museums and sights to see. What tourist traps to avoid.
- How to transport with bus, tram or metro. Detailed names of the bus numbers and the station names you will use.
- Best things to do in each one of the 3 days.
By Belfast Travel Guide 2016Amazon
History of Ireland: The Definitive Guide for Senior Travellers
History of Ireland Ireland (Irish: Éire) is an island carved into two after centuries of subjugation, foreign domination, and various conflicts that lasted until the 20th century. In this post, we will look at the riveting…
Ireland's Gems: Definitive Guide for Travellers
Ireland’s Gems More than 11 million people travelled to Ireland according to the latest tourism statistics, lured by its lush scenery, historic landmarks, and centuries-old culture. (This number includes visitors to both Northern Ireland, part…