Ireland 101 lesson right here: Northern Ireland is technically a different country than Ireland. Northern Ireland is a part of the United Kingdom that uses pounds and measures distance in miles, while Ireland uses euros and measures in kilometers. Now you know.
Northern Ireland is of course a must do on your UK list. We cycled through on our cross-UK trip and would recommend these stop to anyone passing through.
1. Titanic Museum & Dock
In Belfast, Northern Ireland, this museum takes you through so much, from the story of the Titanic, artifacts, profiles of people, to timelines, and everything in between. The museum is relatively new, and exhibits are state of the art creating immersive experiences. It was just an over all fascinating experience exploring this massive museum. More than the exhibits, you’ll also get access to the the pump room the dock, where the huge ship was built.
An adult admission will cost you about £17, or a bit less for a student price. But so worth it, just look at the building itself.
2. Giants Causeway
Definitely a MUST SEE while you’re visiting. About an hour and a half drive from Belfast, Giants Causeway is this amazing natural phenomenon that consist of over 40,000 interlocking hexagonal interlocking columns that is a result an ancient volcanic eruption. Besides the amazing coast and mystical landscape, you can see some wildlife and fauna native to the area and neat little things like the wish pennies stuck into the walls.
You can go on an organized tour with a company for no more than £10, but its free to just walk around and explore the area (as we did).
3. Bushmills Distillery
Not too far from the Giants Causeway, Bushmills Distillery is know worldwide for their super smooth, triple distilled whiskey. Matti, being a whiskey-lover, pulled me along for the tour. The price is amazingly fair at £7.50 for adults, or £6 for a student, which includes the tour plus tasting at the end. Their staff is super friendly and the tour goes into the secrets of how they get their whiskey so smooth. And in the fact in the end you will get a taste of the the many varieties they have available. I actually tasted a whiskey drink mixed with water sugar and served warm. Did you know that this is a way whiskey is enjoyed? I did not, but it was delicious!
4. Marble Arch Caves
A little off the grid from the other attractions on this list, but if you’re in the area, it’s worth a visit. Located just south of Enniskillen, these caves are right at the boarder of Norther Ireland and Ireland. Like we learned before, this is where things start getting confusing, pounds turn to euros and miles turn to kilometres.
The coolest part of this cave tour is that beyond the walking trails, the tour includes a boat ride in the cave. It’s kind of insane. Also the water is super clear and super still that the rest of the cave is reflecting in the water like a mirror. It’s real eerie because that makes the water look infinitely deep, when it’s really only a few inches deep.
Admission will cost you £8.75 for adults or £5.95 for a student.
5. Black Taxi Tour of Belfast
Listen up history buffs! This is definitely for you. The famous Black Taxi Tours will take you on a personalized historical tour of the city. The tour we went on took us through the history of the conflict between the Catholics and Protestants in the early 1920s. The conflict lead to riots and violence, and the building of the wall to divide the communities. The wall is now covered in large colourful murals remember those times and preserving the history of the area. You know the song “Sunday, Bloody Sunday” by U2? Yep, you’ll learn about what is song is actually about.
This tour will run you up about £10 per person with a group.
There are so many more things to do in Norther Ireland, but it would take a lifetime to explore each and every part. What are your favourite parts of this country and what are the things we need to make a trip back and visit?