We had scheduled a family European trip to barecelona and then a cruise in October 2017. But me and Ryan couldnt bring ourselves to fly overseas for just 1 week, we wanted to extend our trip if we were already going to be paying to get there. So it was between Edinburgh and Belfast because they were the cheapest flights we found. Belfast won soley because the cost came in a bit lower and Im so glad it did! Upon looking at things to do in belfast on google like everyone does when going to a city, I saw that Game of Thrones has its main filiming headquarters in Belfast. At this point in time I had never ever seen an episode only heard people rave about it. Ryan had seen most of them but I hadnt joing the bandwagon and had no intent on it. I didnt even know what it was about. Ryan decided he wanted to finished watching it before we went and pushed me to watch at least a few episodes so I could see some of the sights in Belfast. I BECAME OBSESSED!! I binge watched as much as I possibly could before we left for our trip (and only made it half way through season 5 before we flew out) I was on a serious Thrones kick and was determinded to see a cast memeber and all the castles. After our research we found that thet were going to be starting filming around the same time we were going there! My eyes were so wide and head was on a swivel every time we walked anywhere. (sadly we never saw anyone)
Just like Dublin we instantly loved Belfast, even tho it was raining per usual. We stayed in a Hostel with a private room (lesson learned from London circa 2015 – private room hostels only for us now) Our room was not ready right when we arrivaed so we grabbed a tastey vegan lunch acorss the street (Belfast was very veg friendly, it was amazing) then hungout in the lobby of the hostel till our room was ready. There we met some of the hostel workers ( which some live there and work for free. – which is very obvious since most of them walk around barefoot and the one chick had no bra on and kept leaning over. Thankfully my husband is a gentlmen and would turn his head away each time. Hes a keeper!) They gave us a few bars to check out and told us where the Thrones cast has been seen at sometimes. Turns out one of the hostel workers was in extra in a scene once. He actually hated it. Said it was freezing cold and they spent the entire day freezing cold and doing a billion takes. He would never do it again. They all seemed very uninterested in the show all together and like it was no big deal if they saw the cast floating around. I on the other hand was the freak over there taking notes. The hostel was nice, very friendly staff, room was nice, and I would stay again.
The first day we mainly ate and bar hopped. We went to Crown Liquor Saloon which is one of the oldest Bars in the world that dates back to the 1800s
Side note: The Button and Kwarciak (my moms maiden name) families both tie to Northern Ireland. the Button name in specific, started right in northern Ireland. It was very cool to be sitting in the Crown Liquor Saloon thinking that a few hundred years ago one of our ancestors could have been sitting there also.
Honestly the best part of Crown Liquor Saloon was they had Vegetarian Bangers and Mash. If you didnt read my post about our Dublin trip. I fee in love with them 2 years prior. I was bit sad not the be able to eat them this time around. ( Not sad, being veg is such a posititve choice but you know what I mean, dont come after me vegan police.) From there we bar hopped around and drank our irish beers and ciders and listened to the irish music. Some of the happiest times in my life are sitting in an irish bar listening to live irish music. I love to see the smile on Ryans face as we just sit there and smile to the music. The next morning we woke early do take our excursion to the Giants Causeway. The tour bus met a few blocks away and was pretty well organized. We had an option to do the Game of Thrones Tour mixed in with Giants Causeway but decided again it because I hadnt finished catching up yet and didnt want any spoilers ruining it for me. The bus ride was long and VERY windey (If you get motion sick like me, take a pill first!!) I however did not so I spent most of the ride with my head in ryans lap as he fanned me and I tried to breath and no throw up on the bus. I did however lift my head when they announced we would be passing Castle Black. And that unfortunely they were not aloud to stop or even slow down while passing it due to security of filming. (but I was smart enough to put my phone against the window, take a video of us passing it, then pause and screen shot it – take that security!)
When we got to Giants causeway I ammediately went to the bathroom and threw up. I felt so much better and went and took a #handstandsallovertheworld photo in front of the Darrick a redo bridge not even 10 minutes later. (Hah!llllThat’s a true gymnast right there!) After a nice hike up we walked across the Carrick a redo bridge, and although the. Bridge looks very sketchy and shakey it was not scared at all and felt like a 500lbs man could jump on it and you’d be fine. Next we hiked down to Giants causeway which basically looks like a ton of manual steps made of stone! I thought that it was decently cool but not as much as the bridge. We found a mini trail that took us to the top if a mountain to over look Giants causeway and that was probably the coolest part. If you go. Look up at that mountain and you’ll see it….make sure you take the walk! On the drive back we stopped on a hill and were able to see house Baratheon in the far distance. After this I regretted not doing the Gameof Thrones tour and seeing more filming locations.
When the tour was over we stopped a a restaurant in a small town outside of Belfast where they had a ton of Thrones decor including an Iron throne replica. After an obvious photo shoot we ate a (not so good) vegitarian meal and left.
After returning to Belfast we were still quite hungry so before bed decided on grabbing a quick dinner before heading to bed. That’s when we found UMI. I need to go back to Ireland solely for this place. A vegitarians best friend. I ate so much I could barely walk and literally left the place with my jeans unbuttoned. Highly recommend! (They also have one somewhere in Dublin if you’re heading there!)
We spent only 2 short days in Belfast before continuing on but it is for sure a city I would love to visit again. It is very interesting to hear about the history and the division between the Irish and UK. (I secretly picked sides but wont tell you who. Not that it matters I don’t live there haha) Overall I wish we had more time there, this city is a hidden gem and feel as tho more people need to visit it!