Attractions Nearby Belfast, Day Trips and Excursions
(Belfast, Northern Ireland, UK)
If you are holidaying in Belfast and fancy getting out and about, there are a certainly plenty of attractions suitable for day trips. Consider taking an excursion to see the Somme Heritage Centre at Newtownards, or perhaps Inch Abbey in Downpatrick.
Also in Downpatrick and roughly 45 km / 28 miles to the south-east of Belfast, Castle Ward is a magnificent National Trust property with good views of Strangford Lough. Further noteworthy attractions within reach of the city include the extremely historic Holywood Maypole, and the Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge near Ballintoy, which is around 30 metres / 98 feet above the rocks below and offers great coastal views.
Address: Downpatrick, County Down, Northern Ireland, UK
The beautiful ruined remains of Inch Abbey are within east reach of the city and are a popular excursion for tourists visiting the city. Founded more than 800 years ago, Inch Abbey is steeped in history.
Open hours: April to September, Tuesday to Saturday - 10:00 to 18:00, Sunday - 14:00 to 18:00
October to March, Tuesday to Friday by appointment, Saturday - 10:00 to 16:00, Sunday - 14:00 to 16:00
Somme Heritage Centre
Address: 233 Bangor Road, Newtownards, County Down, Northern Ireland, UK
Located close to Newtownards, the Somme Heritage Centre contains many interesting exhibits about the Great War. Opened in 1994, the Somme Heritage Centre is within easy reach of the city.
Open hours: February to March and October to December, Monday to Thursday - 10:00 to 16:00, April to June and September, Monday to Thursday - 10:00 to 16:00, Saturday and Sunday - 12:00 to 16:00, July to August, Monday to Thursday - 10:00 to 17:00, Saturday and Sunday - 12:00 to 17:00
Address: Strangford, Downpatrick, County Down, Northern Ireland, UK
Castle Ward is a stunning, historic mansion set in vast landscaped grounds and dating back to the 1860s. Particularly interesting are the different architectural styles on the back and front facades (Gothic and classical Palladian). Attractions here include historic recreations of Victorian interiors, formal gardens and woodland trails.
Castle open hours: April to May and September to October, Saturday, Sunday and bank holidays - 13:00 to 18:00, June to August, Monday to Wednesday and Friday to Sunday - 13:00 to 18:00
Grounds open hours: all year - dawn to dusk
Address: High Street, Holywood, County Down, Northern Ireland, UK
The Holywood Maypole dominates the town centre and is around 300 years old. Each year, the Holywood Maypole is a major part of the annual May Day Fair festival in this area, nearby Belfast.
Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge
Address: Ballycastle, County Antrim, Northern Ireland, UK
The famous Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge spans a deep chasm and the bridge has become an exciting tourist attraction, providing exceptional views and connecting the tiny Carrick Island.
Open hours: April to mid-September, daily - 10:00 to 18:00 weather depending
Address: Newtownards Road, Bangor, County Down, BT20 4BW, Northern Ireland, UK
Bangor Abbey was founded in the 6th century and although there are only basic remains, this area is full of history. Nearby, the North Down Heritage Centre contains a detailed exhibition explaining the history of Bangor Abbey.