Belfast, North-Ireland: what to do & eat vegan?

January 1, 1970

by Ninarosa Juffermans

When you think of a European city trip, Belfast probably isn’t the first city coming to mind. Let me prove you wrong: Belfast is a beautiful city full of culture, history, things to do, nightlife, and amazing food. Here’s a list of must-see things to see and do as well as the best places to eat vegan food in Belfast. I guarantee, after reading this, you will want to book your ticket to North-Ireland straight away.

Must do in Belfast

Explore the history of Belfast @ The Belfast City Hall

As North-Ireland might not always be sunny or cheap, the Belfast City Hall is always a good idea. It’s free to visit and it’s a beautiful building from both the inside and the outside. The topic of the museum is the history of Belfast and it’s divided into fourteen rooms. Each room has its own topic varying from the map to the language or the clothing. A very interactive way to get to know everything about the history and culture of Belfast.

Relax @ The Botanic Gardens

Good weather? You’re in luck! Make your way to the Botanic Gardens to relax, talk to the local fellas, explore some culture and the museum, and obviously sniff little flowers at the gardens.

Experience uni life @ Queens University

Next to the Botanic Gardens, you will find the Queens University. To be honest, inside the building there’s nothing really interesting but the building looks absolutely stunning from outside. A massive grey, static construction with a large garden and sweet little fountain. A great opportunity to feel the university culture of Belfast.

Find out everything about “the ship that couldn’t sink” @ the Titanic Museum

My personal favourite was definitely the Titanic Museum. This is honestly the most amazing museum I have ever been to. It’s super interactive and the design and decors are pure art. They will take you through all the stages of building the ship and well as the sinking part and the whole investigation. Everything you can think of concerning the Titanic can be found here. I don’t want to spoil too much but promise me you will visit the Titanic Museum!

Overview all Belfast @ Belfast Castle

A bit outside the city centre but worth the ride, the Belfast Castle overlooks all of Belfast. You can see the ocean from here! The castle itself it a bit small and there’s not much to see apart from two large rooms and a restaurant. Oh, there’s a basement with some information. But I suggest you make your way to the garden, order a large black coffee, sit back & relax.

Shop till you drop @ Victoria Square

When all this culture becomes too much, chill out a bit and shop your heart out at Victoria Square. This shopping mall covers all mainstream shops as well as little speciality shops. The prices are okay and the mall isn’t too big; it’s not overwhelming or super crowded. Just the perfect shopping mall to get a culture break.

Feel like a real King of Queen @ Game of Thrones tour

To be honest, Game of Thrones tours are why I came to North-Ireland in the first place. I love Game of Thrones and I had been told most of it is filmed in North-Ireland. Actually, a very large part is filmed in Belfast, in the studios behind the Titanic Museum. But a lot of sets are quite close to Belfast in other parts of North-Ireland. If you love Game of Thrones, I highly highly HIGHLY recommend you book a Game of Thrones tour (or two, like I did). The guides are experienced, involved, friendly, and funny. You get to see so many cool things. Also, you will get to know everything about the history and culture of Belfast and other parts of North-Ireland. Oh my god, I get goosebumps even thinking back about the days I took these tours…

Best places to eat vegan food in Belfast

Falafel

Falafel serves the best Middle Eastern food for a very good price. I ate here on my first night when I was super tired. The waitress was friendly and started chatting with me when she saw I was on my own. So kind! The portions are quite large so be careful not to over-order (or just ask a takeaway box like I did). I had the spicy fries and baba ganoush with pita. I’d recommend both but be careful with the fries as they are really spicy (I know, could have guessed).

The Woodworkers

My Irish friends recommended I would have a pub meal in North-Ireland. As a vegan, I did not really feel like doing this until I discovered The Woodworkers. It’s kind of a pub but then it’s larger and quite luxury. It still has this lovely pub feeling where you order at the bar, drink Guinness, and watch sports games. Oh, the food, yes. I ordered the vegan platter which I thought was a starter. Little did I know. This platter was MASSIVE. There were eight different things to eat like cauliflower bites and tortillas with dips. It was all delicious but as you might have guessed, I didn’t manage to finish it all. Hallelujah for the takeaway box again.

Banh

I had dinner here at my last night as it is super close to the city centre. When I came in, the whole team welcomed me and I felt a part of the little Asian family straight away. I had exactly £9 left in cash and in my country, we pay with euros so this £9 became my budget. I ordered fries (yes, I love fries) with tahini and a tofu curry. When it arrived, I once again underestimated the amount. I managed to finish the super large bowl of crisps which were seasoned with many herbs. Stunning. I tasted the tofu curry and adored it but I my stomach was already full so I asked a takeaway box for the curry and had it for lunch the next day.

Well, what do you think? Belfast sounds amazing, right? When I arrived in North-Ireland, I did not imagine the city would have so much culture in terms of friendly people, things to do, and stunning (and cheap!) food.

Let me know if this list is missing anything. Would love to hear how you liked Belfast!

Xoxo Ninarosa

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