things to do northern ireland

7 Unmissable Things To Do In Northern Ireland

While Ireland is on the travel bucket list of many, fewer make it to Northern Ireland. The interesting region has a complicated history but is home to some wonderful attractions worth making the trek to see.

While you’re there, plan on scheduling these best things to do in Northern Ireland.

Best things to do in Northern IrelandHow do these rankings work?

1. Visit Bushmills Distillery

Bushmills is the oldest licensed whiskey distiller in the world with their production and grant to distill dating to 1608. They’re longstanding and steadfast tradition hasn’t wavered throughout many challenges ranging from fires to prohibitions. Take a tour of the distillery and stay for a tasting. Don’t forget to pick up a distillery exclusive bottle to take home.

things to do northern ireland

2. Take a Black Taxi Tour

The history and political background of Northern Ireland—and its capital, Belfast—is complex to say the least. Take a Black Taxi Tour to get first-hand knowledge and understanding of the local climate with stops to some moving memorials. It’s an easy way to immerse yourself and ask questions for honest answers on both sides of the tour.

things to do northern ireland

3. Stay at the Europa Hotel

This famous hotel has served many notable politicians in Belfast. The beautiful interior is worth stopping in to see and perhaps take a drink. The hallowed halls hold enough history to draw many visitors.

4. Drink at Duke of York

This notable pub is something of a legend. The interior is warm and cozy, and patrons often fill the chairs and booths. Live music begins at 10pm, and there’s tons of lively conversation up until that point. Order a Guinness at the bar and settle into a little nook.

5. See the Dark Hedges

Some know this natural attraction from Game of Thrones while others recognise it from sharp photographer’s shots. The pedestrian road is lined with old, interwoven beech trees that create a tunnel. It’s a striking walk and a beautiful setting. So, keep your camera ready.

6. See the Giant’s Causeway

Around 40,000 interlocking basalt columns for this natural phenomena. The puzzle-like stones stepping out of the ocean are a dramatic addition to the stunning coastline. Climb out to the main point to see some huge waves, and take your camera. A sunset over this spot is something to document.

7. Drive the coastline

Northern Ireland is well-known for its spectacular coastline dotted with chalk cliffs, ancient ruins and basalt volcanic rock deposits. The combination with the moody skies and the green pastures is really breathtaking. Take your time as you work your way up the coast. So, consider taking a cycling tour if you prefer to get out of the car.

Molly Harris

Molly Harris is a freelance travel journalist dividing her time between the United States and the Western Balkans.

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