24 Hours in Belfast
Can you believe it's already 2018? I feel like the end of 2017 flew by in a daze of snow, blankets, cheese and wine. I didn't even get a chance to write a single post in December thanks to life getting in the way but I'm determined to post more regularly this year. I thought I'd start with a few snaps from our last trip of 2017 for a little wintery wanderlust and to get me back in the swing of things.
In the depths of the one snowy weekend we had last month we, after a rather substantial delay of course, flew over to Northern Ireland for one of Joe's friend's weddings. Neither of us had been before so we we added on a extra day to explore Belfast after the wedding instead of heading straight home.
The wedding itself was absolutely bloody magical, it took place in a teeny chapel followed by the mince pies and mulled wine in a beautiful mini mansion house which we had free reign of, followed by dinner, dancing and gin.
The following day we were feeling a little worse for wear but filled our boots with breakfast, got in our little hire car and headed to the Giant's Causeway to blow the cobwebs away. It's an incredible place, filled with 40,000 interlocking basalt columns caused by an ancient volcanic eruption, most of which are hexagonal and some towering 12 metres above our heads. If you're in the area I'd thoroughly recommend a visit, it's a mad landscape and, on a winter's day, the cold sea air is the perfect pick me up.
We then headed into the centre of Belfast to set up camp in the Fitzwilliam Hotel for the night, Joe picked it for us as a little bit of luxury before we came home and I was very much on board. I didn't get any photos of the room as I pretty much just got straight in the bath and no one needs to see that kind of behaviour but the lobby alone is pretty spectacular! The staff were lovely and didn't even mind when we had to check back in at 6am after managing to miss our flight...
We couldn't resist popping into the Crown Liquor Saloon (or The Crown Bar) for some food, it's an incredible pub owned by The National Trust because it's so beautiful. It dates back to 1826 and was apparently a Victorian Gin Palace, which sounds like my kind of place.
It was like stepping back in time, everything from the stained glass windows to the light fittings is incredibly intricate. It has snugs dotted around the edge of the room which you can grab if you're lucky, thankfully we were and ordered ourselves some Irish Stew, it would have been rude not to. If you're heading to Belfast, add it to your list!
Here's to more adventures in 2018!