The main and the largest city of Northern Ireland and the 17th largest one in the UK is Belfast. It is situated on the eastern coast of the Ulster Province. About two thirds of the country’s population lives there – more than 500 thousand people. Its name comes from Irish word, meaning a river mouth as the city is located at the River Lagan mouth. In 1888 Queen Victoria granted Belfast a city status and 33 years later it became a capital. Historically it became a scene for various conflicts, including bombing and assassination.
Once Belfast was a market town, but since the period of industrialization it has been a centre of the state’s several industries: linen, tobacco, shipbuilding and rope-making. It’s well-known for being a birthplace of the famous ocean liner Titanic. Today it’s also the heart of Ulster’s business and cultural life.
A number of visitors of Belfast continue to grow every year because of multiple tourist attractions that may be found there. Besides, the access to some of them is absolutely free of charge being the additional factor for city guests.
A wonderful architectural masterpiece from the Portland stone of the Renaissance style is the City Hall that has been opened since 1906. Free public tours aren’t possible only on Sunday. The building uncovers the city’s fascinating history.
The Ulster Museum is one of the places that must be seen in Belfast for sure. It’s a national museum that has in its disposal ancient relicts (Egyptian Mummy and dinosaurs), natural exhibits, and modern masterpieces that will impress visitors of all ages.
Titanic Belfast is one of 187 Titanic museums in the world and the biggest one consisting of 10 galleries over 6 flours. It has been existed only for 3 years but owns the fullest collection of the things from Titanic. A shape of the building is a star-like representing the White Star Line logo.
If one wants to see the main Anglican church of Ireland, one should definitely visit the building of St. Anne’s Cathedral in a neo-Romanesque style with wonderful mosaic ceiling, stained glass windows and marble floor.
A beautiful historic Belfast Castle (the 12th century) is situated about 4 miles in the north direction from the city centre offering its visitors a picturesque views and locations. Besides, the Cave Hill Visitor Centre, a fascinating museum, is also situated there.
No visit to Belfast would be complete without visiting Botanic Gardens – a very popular place for meetings, festivals, concerts and other events since 1828. There may be found various exotic trees, flowers and birds on 28 acres of land.