Tara Lodge Hotel
Voted No.1 Belfast Hotel since 2007, Tara Lodge is the ideal base camp to explore the city of Belfast. The city is perfect for a weekend break for those in need of a mix of culture, adventure and fun. With local attractions such as the Ulster Museum, Belfast City Hall and Titanic Belfast, visitors will definitely not be struggling for things to do. For the more intrepid traveller, why not leave Belfast and visit the legendary Giants Causeway in the North Coast of Northern Ireland or head south to the Mourne Mountains.
For those of you staying at Tara Lodge, we have created a list of local attractions for unforgettable weekend in Belfast (and further afield).
Titanic Belfast: Titanic Belfast® tells the Titanic story in a fresh and insightful way; from her conception in Belfast in the early 1900s, through her construction and launch, to her infamous maiden voyage and catastrophic demise. The journey goes beyond the aftermath of the sinking, to the discovery of the wreck and continues into the present day with a live undersea exploration centre.
SS Nomadic: This refurbished steamship is the only remaining steamship built by the White Star Line. Used as a tender for the RmS Titanic this ship was extensively refurbished in 2013 and is now open to the public. Walk the planks that the passengers of the RMS Titanic walked nomadicbelfast.com
Crumlin Road Goal: Don't miss a tour of this recently refurbished goal - it's a must see in Belfast. The goal dates back to 1845 and was a working prison until as recently as 1996. There are daily tours available, with highly informative and friendly guides. Evening tours are also available on selected dates through out the summer.crumlinroadgaol.com
Ulster Museum: Come face to face with dinosaurs, meet an Egyptian Mummy and see modern masterpieces with a visit to the Ulster Museum. This museum is a treasure house - home to a rich collection of art, history and natural sciences and free to all visitors. From Ireland to the South Pacific, ancient relics to hands on activities, the museum offers something for everyone.
Belfast Botanical Gardens: Home to the Tropical Ravine and the Palm House, Belfast Botanic Gardens are just 5 minutes' walk from Tara Lodge. Enjoy a walk through the gardens with many interesting floral displays and enter the Palm House to see some of the most unusual and oldest seed plants around today.
Belfast City Hall: Home to Belfast City Council, this beautiful civic building first opened its doors in 1906. Host to many events throughout the year including the continental Christmas market. An extensive refurbishment was completed in 2011. Enjoy the splendour of the interior by taking one of the free, daily tours.
Linen Hall Library: The Linen Hall Library is a truly unique institution. Founded in 1788, it is the oldest library in Belfast and the last subscribing library in Ireland. It is renowned for its unparalleled Irish and Local Studies Collection. Relax with a coffee and a good book in the café.
PRONI: Located in the Titanic Quarter, the Public Records Office of Northern Ireland, is a must for anyone researching their family tree or seeking information on ancestors and relatives located in Northern Ireland.
Belfast Castle & Cave Hill: Belfast Castle, opened in 1870, is set on the slopes of Cavehill Country Park, Belfast in a prominent position with unobstructed views of the city of Belfast and Belfast Lough. The castle offers an antiques shop, a restaurant and visitors centre. If you’re feeling fit you can climb up Cavehill for more stunning views of the cityscape.
Belfast Zoo: Belfast Zoo is home to more than 1,000 animals and 150 species including Barbary lions, red kangaroos and Rothchild's giraffes to name a few. The zoo is located in north Belfast, with stunning views over Belfast. A great fun day out for all the family – only two bus journeys away.
St. Anne's Cathedral: This impressive building was completed and consecrated in 1903. This Church of Ireland cathedral is an integral part of the community in the city centre hosting church serves, many musical and artistic events and our own Black Santa throughout the year. Open daily from 10am – 4pm.
Ulster Folk & Transport Museum: Hop on a train to Cultra rail station and walk the few minutes to the museum to go back in time and uncover a way of life from 100 years ago. Discover cottages, farms, schools and shops as you wander through the beautiful parkland of the Folk Museum. The Transport Museum is bursting with horse drawn carriages, electric trams, motorbikes, fire-engines and vintage cars for the automobile enthusiast to enjoy.
Giant’s Causeway: The legend tells that the Giant’s Causeway was built by Finn McCool as a walk way to fight the Scottish giant Benandonner. Situated on the North coast of Ireland the Giant’s Causeway is an area of approximately 40,000 interlocking basalt columns, the result of an ancient volcanic eruption; however the legend is more convincing for those who prefer a more colourful story.
The site is a major part of Ireland’s heritage, attracting visitors from around the world each year since it was first documented in 1693 and realistic sketches were published in 1740. The Giant’s Causeway has often been described as the Eighth Wonder of the World and was declared as Ireland’s first World Heritage site by UNESCO in 1986. Once you have visited, you will quickly see why it has become Ireland’s top tourist attraction.
Mourne Mountains: The melody and words 'Where the Mountains of Mourne sweep down to the sea' of the popular song written by Percy French in 1896, have made the Mournes the best-known mountains in Ireland. An area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, the Mourne Mountains are the most picturesque in Ireland and were the inspiration for the writer CS Lewis's magical land of Narnia in his popular children's books the Chronicles of Narnia.
The Mourne Mountains and the surrounding area provide every outdoor activity from hill walking, rock climbing, and mountain boarding to horse riding, fishing and golf. Enjoy sand, sea and ice cream in Newcastle nestled at the foot of the mountains only an hour’s drive from Tara Lodge, Belfast.