Belfast Travel Guide is part of the Punxsutawney TPOL Trip Report.
TPOL’s Guns & Butter Travel Guide is the best way to see as much as you can in as little time as possible. Here’s how it works – A trip is composed of two factors: Labor And Lazy. The opportunity cost (what is given up) for relaxing and being Lazy is gained by being adventurous in the form of Labor and vice versa. The guide includes inefficient activities i.e., tourist traps that should be avoided and aspirational activities that are worth doing but may be impossible to see given the constraints of time and resources.
I used to only write a Guns & Butter Travel Guide if I did a minimum number of things. I have come to realize that I will not be able to hit the minimum for every place I go. And that is okay. Indeed, that is the whole point of Guns & Butter. There’s a tradeoff. In Belfast, that tradeoff meant prioritizing what I could do the one night and one day I was there.
I arrived early in the morning, exhausted from the sprint from Spain (see Guns & Butter: Ribera Del Duero, Madrid Travel Guide (Vino Edition)) to Denmark (see Guns & Butter: Copenhagen Travel Guide) to Scotland (see Guns & Butter: Edinburgh Travel Guide). Typically, landing in a new city gives me a bolt of energy, allowing me to ignore the fact that I have not had adequate rest. I was out of gas by the time I arrived in Belfast and slept until the early afternoon at the underwhelming AC Marriott (see AC Marriott Belfast: It’s OK).
There aren’t any Indian restaurants in Puerto Rico, so when I read on Wikitravel that the oldest Indian restaurant, Archana, was recommended, I tried to make a reservation. Due to Covid, only delivery was available. This was the perfect excuse to delay my exploration of the city until the next day.
Once upon a time, the New York Times had a contest to have a lucky/unlucky someone visit 52 cities in 52 weeks. The point of this adventure was to see if a traveler could connect with a place despite being there for a short time. Since this is TPOL’s Travel Philosophy, I was shocked when I was not selected (see The Failing NYT Didn’t Hire TPOL: Sad!).
With only one day in Northern Ireland, I booked a private black taxi so I could begin to understand the conflict (see Troubles Tour Belfast). While I am far from a scholar now, I do have some understanding of the situation. To that end, I can say that I did something meaningful, if not profound, while I was there.
No trip to the island of Ireland would be complete without a Guinness. That, along with traditional Irish food like bangers & mash and fish & chips was a great way to end the day.
TPOL’s Tip: The Kitchen Bar is located at 1 Victoria Square, Belfast BT1 4QG, United Kingdom.
If I had more time, I would have gone to The Giant’s Causeway, a wondrous rock formation. If I had more time and it wasn’t closed due to Covid, I may have checked out the Titanic Tour, the place the ill-fated ship was built. It is not a tour of the Titanic itself. Rather, it is a history of the shipping industry and its decline. Since time was limited, I walked around the city center and tried to comprehend how life looked seemingly normal despite the fact that in the Western world, in the United Kingdom there are gates that close off neighborhoods at 7PM.
I didn’t do much in terms of quantity but what I saw and what I learned was unmatched.