Belfast…by Bike!

May 31, 2012

Posted by
Jane

If you’re planning a wee trip to Belfast or fancy a day out in the city – then the Belfast City Bike Tour is a must. It’s a great way to see the city, get to know the hotspots & see all the sights. The Tours are led by knowledgable & charming guides – who are happy to let you in on all of Belfast’s best kept secrets, where to get a great pint & even some interesting theories on Belfast’s main attractions!

Belfast City Bike Tours offer a range of different routes including an orientation tour taking you through Belfast’s main quarters & showing you many of the cities main attractions including Queen’s University, Titanic Belfast, Albert Clock, The Big Fish & Botanic Gardens. There is also the new Titanic Bike n Boat Tour. This particular tour takes you through Belfast’s Cathedral Quarter followed by a boat trip along the River Lagan where you can see the exact spot Titanic was designed & built. The tour continues through the Titanic Quarter – showing you all the major Titanic attractions including the famous drawing rooms & Thompson Dock. For something a little bit different there is the Hilden Brewery Tour, see Ireland’s oldest Brewery, have a spot of lunch, a sample (or five) from the brewery & take in some of the local sights on yer bike!

The ni2012 team were lucky enough to take a wee trip out with the boys from Belfast City Bike Tours this week for the orientation tour. What a morning we had… funny stories, great sights, beautiful weather & even the world’s smallest roundabout! Our tour was led by Rory & Jerome from Belfast City Bike Tours – who have a pretty impressive knowledge of the city. The tour had many highlights, including the beautiful bikes themselves – ‘California Cruisers’ specially imported from France! The bikes are easy to manage and incredibly comfortable, we could have easily cycled around the city all day on the colourful cruisers!

The Stylish California Cruiser Bike at the Big Fish

We set off from Central Library in the heart of Belfast City, making our first stop at Writer’s Square opposite St. Annes Cathedral. Here our guides took us through some of the key buildings in the area & attractions. We then cycled through the heart of Belfast’s oldest quarter – the Cathedral Quarter, we stopped off for a bit of star spotting at the impressive Mural Alley tucked away in Commercial Court. The informative and amusing chat from our tour guides continued throughout… we learnt about the history of the area, the beautiful architecture, why many of Belfast’s key buildings are old banks! Keeping with the theme of wealth and luxury, the boys even pointed out where we could get the world’s most expensive cocktail which is served in The Merchant Hotel (I might have to save for another while to afford the £750 cocktail!).

Star spotting in Commercial Court

Cruising on over to the Albert Clock & Custom House Square, passing Belfast’s oldest Bar & Ireland’s tallest building. Even with some Belfast natives on the tour, there were lots of interesting new facts revealed about Belfast – including details of the city’s famous industries, having once been the world’s biggest producer of rope, linen, tobacco and not forgetting the massive shipbuilding industry.

Belfast’s Albert Clock

After a quick stop at Belfast’s most photographed Fish, we then headed off along the Lagan Towpath to the very pretty Botanic Gardens, followed by a stop at the historic Queen’s University. At each landmark of the tour – Rory & Jerome filled us in on the history of each area, the architecture of the buildings & a few lesser known stories of the city! The Belfast City Bike Tours Boys endless knowledge of Belfast included everything from property prices to the real reason why the Albert Clock leans slightly to the left!

The Beautiful Botanic Gardens

The tour took us back through the heart of Belfast, allowing visitors to see Belfast’s shopping area & stopping off at Mourne Seafood Bar – where we are told does a great Oyster Beer & is a great spot for lunch or dinner. The boys never failed to disappoint – with every stop on the tour – they were eager to point out where you could get the best pint of Guinness in each of the city’s quarters! The tour which is led at a relaxing pace, takes around 2-3 hours and finishes back up at the Central Library.

Overall, the tour was fun, friendly and definitely a great way to get to know Belfast’s hidden gems & biggest attractions. The guides are extremely helpful – allowing time to get used to your bike & ensuring an enjoyable, safe tour of of the city. This is perfect for anyone visiting Belfast for the first time & for those of you who think they already know the city inside out – book a Belfast City Bike Tour for a whole new perspective! It’s most definitely a great way to spend a day getting to know the ‘Real‘ Belfast.

For more info, prices or to book a tour visit: www.belfastcitybiketours.com/tours

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