A holiday or short break to the Emerald Isle is ideal for families. Hidden gems along rugged coastlines, global award-winning attractions, fine cuisine and gorgeous countryside will make your visit a memory to treasure forever…
From unique attractions to stunning landscapes discover Northern Ireland this spring
With the brighter evenings and longer days only around the corner, it’s the perfect time to sail across the Irish Sea with P&O Ferries and discover more of Northern Ireland. With unique attractions, stunning landscapes and a fantastic mix of world class events, there’s so much to see and do for families looking for a break.
And with P&O Ferries, it’s never been easier to sail from Cairnryan to Larne, with up to seven sailings a day on the shortest, most frequent crossings. For young sailors, there’s plenty to keep them happy on board in the newly decorated kids’ play area and game zone. The younger children’s entertainment room has a play area, and a video screen playing all their favourite shows, and the arcade room will certainly keep older siblings happy too.
Even if you’ve been to Northern Ireland before there is sure to be loads you’ve yet to discover. Travel with P&O Ferries from Cairnryan to Larne from only £74.
For more inspiration and book your trip visit poferries.com
Upgrade to enjoy Club Lounge with a range of complimentary newspapers and magazines, refreshments and Wi-Fi. It costs £12 per person if booked in advance and £14 per person if booked on board.
Travel with P&O Ferries from Cairnryan to Larne from only £74
Play AND Stay in Ards and North Down where family fun is plentiful!
Explore oceans at Exploris in Portaferry, burn off energy at Bangor Aurora Aquatic and Leisure Complex, feed the ducks at WWT Castle Espie, pedal a giant swan boat at Pickie Fun Park in Bangor or wander the wonderful parks and woodlands of the borough… the choice is yours. With miles of coastline for picnics, kite flying and sandcastle building, there’s no excuse to be stuck indoors! For big kids the area has a rich heritage, great shopping and lively eateries, you may also find the oldest pub in Ireland!
Keep up to date with the latest events online this season, from Easter activities such as themed parades to bunny hunts, via the 2017 Walks and Tours programme and the full Spring Summer season of events. Pick up your free copy of the new Experiences and Events Visitor Guide due out in March, also available to download.
Make Ards and North Down your next getaway – whether it be a day trip, a long weekend, or week away, there is always plenty to see and do. Contact Ards and North Down Visitor Information Centres for more information, expert advice and to book accommodation: Bangor Visitor Information Centre Tel: 028 9127 0069 & Ards Visitor Information Centre Tel: 028 9182 6486 or visit visitardsandnorthdown.com
Find lots to love at Exploris aquarium including a new Asian Small-Claw Otter pup, the first to be bred in captivity in Northern Ireland. With educational open pools, kids’ zone, new reptile section and seal sanctuary, little nature explorers can get an even closer look at the majestic animals which inhabit the surrounding waters of Strangford Lough – a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
Visit the World’s Leading Tourist Attraction
Titanic Belfast, named the World’s Leading Tourist Attraction in 2016, is located at the heart of Titanic Quarter in Belfast, Northern Ireland. Located only a short walk from Belfast’s city centre, Titanic Belfast is an iconic venue located beside the Titanic Slipways, the Harland and Wolff Drawing Offices and Hamilton Graving Dock – the very place where Titanic was designed, built and launched in 1912.
Telling the story of the world’s most famous ocean liner through nine interpretive and interactive galleries, visitors will explore the sights, sounds, smells and stories of Titanic, as well as the City and people which made her, in an unmissable experience which brings history to life in an unforgettable way.
With a special kids’ trail, multimedia guides and family tickets options, this is a great day out for any family, school or group outing.
Titanic Belfast is easily accessed from all main ports of entry from Scotland and NW England. For more information visit titanicbelfast.com
Just a stone’s throw
Legend has it that the UNESCO World Heritage Site Giant’s Causeway in Northern Ireland is the result of a feud between the Irish giant Finn McCool and the Scottish Giant Benandonner. Scientists say the 40,000 basalt columns are a 60 million-year-old geological wonder.
With daily sailings from Cairnryan and flights from Aberdeen, Edinburgh, Glasgow and Inverness, the Giant’s Causeway (named the UK’s Best Heritage Attraction for the second year running in 2016) is really just a stone’s throw away… so why not visit and make up your own mind?
Discover the Causeway Coastal Route, listed as ‘one of the world’s great road trips’ where the rugged coastline merges with a landscape of deep, silent glens and lush forest parks. There are seaside resorts with award-winning golden beaches, just perfect for a family break, with lots of activities, whether you like walking, cycling, horse-riding, water sports or adventure centres; all accompanied by great food and world-famous hospitality.
See the website visitcausewaycoastandglens.com for special offers.
The Ultimate Family-Friendly Escape at Loughshore Hotel
The Belfast Loughshore Hotel in Carrickfergus is ideally situated for exploring Northern Ireland; the Causeway Coastal Route, the lands of Game of Thrones, Titanic Belfast, Belfast City and the historical town of Carrickfergus itself, with its very own 13th century Norman Castle.
The hotel has easy access to the parklands of Belfast Lough and little ones can explore World of Wonder, the hotel’s state-of-the-art Children’s soft play.
The Causeway Coastal Route is one of the most beautiful journeys in the world, and the variety of stunning scenery is truly breathtaking. The trip culminates at one of Northern Ireland’s most famous attraction – the Giant’s Causeway, a natural wonder which has been enjoyed by many visitors to this small country over the years.
Northern Ireland is a very manageable country to visit, with all of the interesting and important visitor sites being accessible from the hotel within a two-hour drive. The Loughshore Hotel is only a 20-minute drive from each of the major sea ports and both Belfast airports. Visit loughshorehotel.com for more information.
Stay at the Loughshore Hotel and find this on your doorstep: One of the best medieval structures in Ireland, Carrickfergus Castle dates back to Norman times and hosts many family friendly events throughout the year including living history battle re-enactments and activities like have-a-go archery.