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Discover Northern Ireland

By Sean Mahon

Posted: 28th March 2014 15:44

A country hidden away during much of the 20th Century after a conflict wrought period during the Troubles, the six counties that make up Northern Ireland have finally been opened up for the whole world to see a part of Ireland thatis vibrant with culture and history.

Belfast has really undergone an image change in recent years after a huge urban regeneration project which has seen it celebrate its Victorian architecture, glittering waterfront as well as packed out Irish pubs pounding with traditional country music.  The most iconic ocean liner the world has ever seen, the Titanic, which was built in Belfast and a key part of the capitals heritage is celebrated through a museum that can be found in the Titanic Quarter, just remember “she was fine when she left here”.

Another must see is the country’s second city, Derry.  Which like Belfast, has undergone a rejuvenation with new sites such as the Peace Bridge, Ebrington Square as well as the redevelopment of the waterfront and Guildhall take advantage of the city’s riverside setting.  There is also a great history to be found here, whether it is the 17th century city walls or Bogside murals.

No visit to Northern Ireland is complete without a trip to Giant’s Causeway, the hexagonal basalt columns; (all 38,000 of them including the ones underwater) are truly a sight to behold.  They came about after lava erupted from an underground fissure and crystallised 60 million years ago, but for those with a more active imagination - the giant Finn McCool took a liking to a female giant on the Scottish island of Staffa and built some stepping stones to the island where similar rock formations are found – we can only hope she appreciated his gesture!

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