Many tourists shy away from exploring Northern Ireland due to the region’s war-torn history. However, the overall political climate of this unique area has changed greatly over the past decade.
While there are still remnants of “The Troubles” in the six counties of Northern Ireland, it is generally a safe place for tourists and citizens alike.
For today’s travelers, the winding lakes, emerald green hills, and clean, fresh air of Northern Ireland can be unexpected and pleasant discoveries.
Peaceful vistas and well-stocked rivers for fishing are just a couple of things you can expect to enjoy while visiting.
In fact, the region is quite beautiful, and well worth a look…here are some tips for getting the most out of a trip to Northern Ireland..
Getting Oriented –
If you are traveling between the Republic and Northern Ireland, crossing over should not present any problems: you can simply drive straight through.
However, you should bear in mind that Northern Ireland’s currency is still in pounds sterling, and they do not always honor the Euro. Getting organized and carrying enough of the proper currency will make your trip run more smoothly.
You may find that the still-heightened security of the region is visible in armored SUV’s, reinforced buildings, etc. Pay careful attention to signs and follow all instructions they give.
You will also see many murals and other illustrations of political beliefs while in the country; they will often feature two distinctive color schemes (green, orange and white for Republicans, and blue, red and white for Loyalists). Avoid wearing any flags or symbols on your own clothing or backpack.
Now that we’ve covered the basics, let’s look at some amazing attractions in Northern Ireland:
Things To See And Do
The Wheel Of Belfast –
No trip to the city of Belfast is complete without a ride on the city’s beloved ferris wheel – known as “The Wheel”, or, “The Big Wheel”.
This is no ordinary fairground ride – you can even opt for a VIP gondola that is equipped with tinted windows, luxury leather seating, and (optional) champagne!
Located beside City Hall, this special attraction offers a magical way to experience the scenery of the city. Each gondola holds up to six people, so the whole family can ride together.
Tully Castle –
Located in Fermanagh, this historic castle was built in the 17th century. Originally the home of the Hume family, it was burnt down in 1641. Although the castle was rebuilt, its inhabitants were murdered by an enemy, and the stone structure has never been lived in since.
The dramatic history and ravaged beauty of this stone fortress makes it a must-see for tourists. You will be able to wander through the remains of this ancient castle, while also enjoying the manicured gardens that surround its stone walls.
Giant’s Causeway –
Northern Ireland’s most renowned tourist attraction, Giant’s Causeway, is located in County Antrim. Comprised of basalt columns, this natural wonder is the result of a volcanic eruption.
Climbing the stones of Giant’s Causeway is always a popular activity for adults and children alike. The intersecting basalt columns are usually of hexagon shape, and some rise as high as 36 feet above the sea.
Currently, the Causeway remains the most popular tourist destination in the country.
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