Five fun first dates in Belfast

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Belfast is not only the largest city in Northern Ireland, it’s also home to some of the country’s best date spots. Freelance writer and blogger at Willow Lane, Ruth Maguire highlights five fun first dates in Belfast.

1. For a low-key, casual date take a trip to St George’s Market

1 St-Georges-Market

Source – Flickr

If you want to arrange a laid-back weekend date, head to St George’s Market in Belfast City Centre on a Saturday or Sunday.  Wonder around the fab craft stalls and numerous food stalls selling local and continental produce.  Tuck into some tasty savoury bites or enjoy a speciality coffee and a yummy cupcake.  You’ll have plenty to talk about as you wander around taking in all the colourful sights, succulent smells and general hubbub of this large indoor market.  You’ll also be supporting local makers and producers so what could be better?!  There’s a reason why St George’s Market is one of Belfast’s oldest attractions.

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2. For the culture vultures, visit Belfast’s latest arts centre The MAC

2 The-Mac

Source – Flickr

Organising a date at Belfast’s trendy new arts centre situated in the city’s Cathedral Quarter will surely impress.  Check out the current exhibition and then take in one of the shows.  You’ll have plenty to talk about afterwards so grab a bite to eat at Canteen at the Mac or at one of the top quality restaurants in the Cathedral Quarter.

3. For the thrill seekers, visit the Crumlin Road Gaol

3 Crumlin-Road-Gaol

Source – BBC

Refurbished in 2012 The Crumlin Road Gaol has proved a massive hit with Belfast locals and tourists alike.  Just outside of the city-centre the gaol opened in 1845 and was a working prison until 1996.  Known as Europe’s Alcatraz, this grade A building has a fascinating history.  Go on the 60-minute long Paranormal Activity tour and it might not be long before the two of you are jumping into each other’s arms!

4. For the outdoorsy types, take a trip to Cave Hill and wonder around Belfast Castle

The best affordable dates in Northern Ireland - Cavehill

Source – Welcome To Willow Lane

Enjoy a bit of nature in North Belfast and organise a hike up Cave Hill, or if you’re feeling less adventurous, enjoy the surroundings of Belfast Castle. Take a stroll around the beautiful gardens and enjoy the spectacular views over the city.  Finish off with afternoon tea in the castle’s very own Cellar Restaurant.  Very civilised indeed.

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5. If you’re feeling a bit flush, head to The Merchant for cocktails

merchant hotel

Source – The Merchant Hotel

If you really want to make an impression on the first date and are keen to flash the cash, then take your date to the world famous The Merchant Hotel in Belfast’s Cathedral Quarter. The Merchant is a big bit of luxury right bang in the city centre. Be sure to get ‘dolled up’ for your date in the opulent Art Deco surroundings. Linger over a cocktail or two in the multi-award winning jazz bar and you’ll be staring lovingly into each other’s eyes in no time.


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