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The Ultimate Guide To Cruising From Belfast

The Ultimate Guide To Cruising From Belfast

Belfast Harbour is a busy hub of activity for all things maritime and has become increasingly popular for cruise holidays in recent years. Located just three miles from the city centre on the Lagan River, which flows out to the Irish Sea, the cruise terminal makes cruise holidays for passengers from Northern Ireland easy to access. Here’s what you need to know when sailing from here.

Interesting to know

  • Belfast Harbour has three cruise locations: 
  • D1 Belfast Cruise Terminal, its newest location, was built in 2019 and dredged to accommodate ships carrying up to 6,000 passengers
  • Stormont Wharf, for larger ships
  • Pollock Dock, closer to the city centre and for smaller ships
  • Belfast Harbour is home to over 700 businesses with more than 23,000 employees working in and around the estate
  • Belfast Harbour has the largest cruise port in Northern Ireland and is projected to welcome over 280,000 visitors on more than 130 cruise ships this year.

Getting to the Belfast Cruise Port 

Belfast is well-connected via road, rail and air. With the harbour just three miles from the city centre, regular shuttles are available. Taxis also run between the two locations and usually cost around £7-£12 one way. 

When driving to the cruise port, passengers can use the postcode BT3 9EA for their satnav. Taking you to Belfast via the M1 (from the south) or M2 (from the north), the cruise port is well-signposted from the city centre. Parking is available at the cruise port but needs to be booked in advance with your cruise line. Prices are typically from £5.00 per night.

Belfast has good rail services from other towns and cities in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. Lanyon Place Station is Belfast’s central rail station. From here, taxis are available to take you to the cruise port.

If you are travelling internationally, it is just over 21 miles or 30 minutes drive from Belfast Airport to the cruise port.

Inside Belfast Cruise Terminal

Belfast’s newest cruise terminal was purpose-built, offering facilities such as a cruise visitor centre, free Wi-Fi, gift shops, a seating area and toilets, as well as shore excursion coach parking. 

Cruise lines departing from Belfast

Although Fred. Olsen Cruises and Ambassador Cruise Line are currently the only two cruise lines offering cruise holidays from Belfast, many of the leading cruise lines do stop here, including Princess Cruises, Celebrity Cruises and Regent Seven Seas Cruises.

Where can you sail to from Belfast?

From Belfast, you can enjoy a cruise holiday discovering the unspoilt beauty of the Scottish Isles, the awe-inspiring landscape of Iceland and Greenland or the wondrous fjords of Norway. There are also short cruises exploring the coast of the British Isles and France and sometimes sailing down to Iberia. 

Visiting Belfast

As the capital of Northern Ireland, Belfast has a wealth of history, alongside a vibrant culture with live music and world-class entertainment. It’s a very walkable city, and with infamous landmarks and historical architecture, such as Belfast Cathedral, the Beacon of Hope in Thanksgiving Square and ‘The Big Fish’, there’s plenty to keep you interested along the way. Also, don’t miss the chance to get amazing panoramic views of the city from the Dome at Victoria Square. 

With the Titanic being built in Belfast, its visitor experience ‘Titanic Belfast’ draws great interest from tourists looking to learn more about its story. Meanwhile, the National Museum and Botanic Gardens are well worth a visit, both for historical interest and to enjoy the beautiful flora.

Places to visit from Belfast

If you have more time in the area, the Giant’s Causeway, a UNESCO World Heritage site, is a must-see with its remarkable geological formations. Alternatively, CS Lewis Square, a landscape dedicated to the magical world of Narnia and featuring seven bronze sculptures, is only three miles from the city centre. 

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