Visiting Belfast on a budget? Here are the top fun things to do for free. From museums to parks, discover the best of Belfast and beyond without having to spend a penny!

Ulster Museum VB 4

Ulster Museum

Come face to face with dinosaurs, meet an ancient Egyptian mummy and see modern masterpieces with a visit to the Ulster Museum. As Northern Ireland’s treasure house of the past and the present, the Ulster Museum is home to a rich collection of art, history and natural sciences and entry is completely free to all visitors.

Discover Ulster Scots

Discover your Ulster-Scots roots at this free genealogy research point. The centre is open daily to visitors and offers a range of free literature and information displays. Find out which heritage trails will lead you down the path to your ancestors and how the Ulster-Scots emigrated around the world to become some of the most important world leaders and entrepreneurs in history.

VB   Belfast Bikes

Belfast's Maritime Mile

Belfast has a world-famous maritime history. As the home of Harland & Wolff, once the greatest ship builders in the world, the city was the birthplace of many iconic vessels including the renowned RMS Titanic. Today, the dockside offers plenty of sights, attractions and opportunities to delve into the history of the city. From award-winning exhibitions to historic docks, walk the Maritime Mile – developed by Maritime Belfast Trust – and uncover the stories of Belfast’s maritime past.

Colin Glenn St Patrick's day (1)

Colin Glen

Just a short drive away from Belfast city centre, Colin Glen is the home to Ireland’s only official Gruffalo trail! Search for the famous characters as you walk through the woods.

Northern Ireland War Memorial

A must see for anyone with an interest in Northern Ireland’s role in the Second World War, this free museum in the heart of the Cathedral Quarter tells the story of the Belfast Blitz in 1941, the Ulster Home Guard, the role played by women in the war and the presence of US Forces. A memorial screen recalls the names of over 1000 people who lost their lives in the Belfast Blitz.

Belfast Free Walking Tours

Belfast Free Walking Tour

Take a walking tour and explore the history of the city and its people for free! Belfast Free Walking Tours run every day at 11am and 2.30pm leaving from Belfast City Hall. This local, independent free tour company offers a glimpse into Belfast’s history, languages, culture, legends, folklore and more.

Nomadic Belfast (SS Nomadic)

Titanic Trail

Immerse yourself in Belfast’s maritime history on the Titanic Trail: a free, self-guided walk from the Titanic Memorial Gardens at Belfast City Hall to the Titanic Quarter. You’ll journey past Titanic’s tender ship the SS Nomadic; the breathtaking Titanic Belfast visitor attraction building; the slipways where Titanic stood before embarking and WW2 battle-ship HMS Caroline. Pick up a map in the Visit Belfast Welcome Centre, or download it here. The Titanic Trail is marked in orange on page two.


MAC Art Gallery in Foyer

Wander into the MAC and discover work by local artists in the art gallery in the foyer. Displays include a sculptural piece by Irish artist Mark Garry consisting of 400 metal wires that create a spectrum of colour. The installation reflects the futility of violence as well as the hopes and aspirations of the young people.

Linen Hall Library

Founded in 1788, Linen Hall Library is the oldest library in Belfast and the last subscribing library in Ireland. It is renowned for its unparalleled Irish and Local Studies Collection, ranging from comprehensive holdings of Early Belfast and Ulster printed books to the 250,000 items in the Northern Ireland Political Collection, the definitive archive of the recent ‘Troubles’. Admission to the library is free, but donations from visitors are appreciated to support the library’s work.

Belfast Print Workshop 10

Belfast Print Workshop

Belfast Print Workshop print studio located in the Cathedral Quarter Est.1977 welcoming artists in the practice and promotion of printmaking for over 45 years. Their vision is to provide and sustain a safe and neutral working environment for anyone wishing to participate and learn about printmaking processes, and to promote this across local, national and international levels. There is free admission to visit the studio workshop and gallery.

Glass of Thrones Trail

To celebrate 10 years of filming in Northern Ireland, Tourism Ireland created six giant, stained glass windows depicting some of the most iconic scenes from Game of Thrones. Find all six of Belfast’s Game of Thrones® stained glass windows and follow the trail from the city centre to the very place the show was filmed at Titanic Studios.

Belfast City Hall

One of Belfast’s most iconic buildings, Belfast City Hall first opened its doors in August 1906 and is Belfast’s civic building. A visitor app is free to download and includes a rich and engaging audio tour that will guide you through the visitor exhibition and all of its displays. Or simply stroll in the manicured grounds, see the Titanic Memorial Garden and take in the building’s exquisite architecture, which is often illuminated in different colours after dark.

VB Big Fish

Big Fish

The most interesting thing about this fish are its beautiful blue scales, which are made up of ceramic tiles describing different scenes from the city’s history. Stop by this piece of public art for a selfie and closer inspection of the tiled exterior, which tells the story of Belfast.

Belfast Exposed Photography Gallery

Belfast Exposed

Belfast Exposed’s vision is to enrich people’s lives through the power of photography. Belfast Exposed provides a range of services including four public galleries exhibition work by both internationally renowned and local photographers, images from the Archive, and their ‘Futures’ project – a special programme for emerging artists.

Aslan at CS Lewis Square

CS Lewis Square

Rediscover The Chronicles of Narnia with a walk through CS Lewis Square, a public space commemorating the Belfast-born author, CS Lewis. CS Lewis Square is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week and are fully illuminated.

Dome at Victoria Square

Dome at Victoria Square

Rising high above the city’s skyline, the Dome at Victoria Square boasts 360 degree views across Belfast. Ascend to its viewing platform for free and spot the city’s landmarks including the famous Harland & Wolff Cranes, Belfast City Hall, Stormont Buildings and Cave Hill. An in-house guide is on hand to point out local attractions and points of interest, too.

Step into spring botanic (1)

Botanic Gardens

Next to Ulster Museum you’ll find the beautiful Botanic Gardens: a public park popular with locals that has been awarded a Green Flag as one of the UK’s best open spaces. Stroll along the walking routes, enjoy the horticulture or relax on the manicured lawns. With its iconic Palm House, Botanic Gardens are also an important part of Belfast’s Victorian heritage.

Tropical Ravine at Botanic Gardens

Escape to the rainforest in this two-storey labyrinth of tropical plants, flowers and trees. The Tropical Ravine at Botanic Gardens is a must-visit for botany-lovers and completely free to enter. Discover rare species and visit the lily pond and waterfall, all housed in a stunningly restored Victorian building.

Tour Ticket Ireland Cave Hill

Cave Hill Country Park

Visitors to Cave Hill Country Park can enjoy panoramic views across Belfast from vantage points on the hillside. Its most famous feature, known locally as Napoleon’s Nose, is believed to have been the inspiration for Jonathan Swift’s novel, Gulliver’s Travels.

Belfast Castle Estate

Belfast Castle is located on Cave Hill in north Belfast and both offer beautiful walks and spectacular views of the city. Stroll in the manicured gardens the 19th century Scottish Baronial style castle.

Public Record Office of Northern Ireland

Public Record Office of Northern Ireland

The records that PRONI holds date largely from c.1600 to the present day (with the oldest dating back to 1219). PRONI is the first place of reference to trace your family tree or undertake research into local history.

Free Things to Do in Lisburn and Castlereagh

Irish Linen Centre and Lisburn Museum

Learn about the history of Ireland’s linen industry at the Irish Linen Centre in Lisburn. Wander through interactive displays, watch weaving demonstrations and enjoy temporary exhibitions on local history, art and textiles. The museum is free to enter, though donations are welcome.

Wallace Park Lisburn

Wallace Park is ideal for families, with an excellent children’s play area and a variety of gentle walks. During the summer there are a number of free entry family fun events in Wallace Park with crafts, dance, theatre, music and arts on offer. Join a Park Run or visit the outdoor gym.

Wallace Park Lisburn

Free Things to Do in Ards and North Down

North Down Museum

North Down Museum reveals the role of nearby Bangor Abbey in early Christian Ireland through fascinating displays and a mini cinema dome. Discover how the monks met their fate at the hands of the Vikings and visit the full-sized Monk’s Cell and Viking Long-house. The museum is free to enter and hosts a regular line-up of events for the whole family.

Bangor Castle Walled Garden

Bangor Castle Walled Garden

Bangor Castle Walled Garden, located in the tranquil grounds of Castle Park, is popular with visitors of all ages. Dating back to the 1840s it maintains a quintessential Victorian feel and boasts beautiful horticulture, walking paths and unique sculptures celebrating Bangor’s maritime heritage. The gardens are generally open from the end of March to the end of October.

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