Best Time to Go to Northern Ireland
The warm days of summer are the most popular time to visit Northern Ireland, and airfares and hotel rates rise accordingly. Visit during the spring or fall shoulder seasons for better deals and smaller crowds. (One exception: St. Patrick’s Day on March 17, which draws crowds particularly to Belfast for its lively parade.) Winter is the cheapest time to go, but you’ll have to contend with gray, chilly weather and short hours of daylight; beware that some castles, historic sites and other tourist attractions shut down for the off-season, so check ahead.
Northern Ireland on a Budget
To save on airfare, travel outside the busy summer tourist season; this will also help you save a few pennies on accommodations, as rates are usually seasonal. Speaking of lodging, skip the pricey hotel or B&B and consider renting self-catering cottages or seeking out private hostel rooms instead. Before you rent a car, look into public transportation; Northern Ireland’s network of buses and trains will get you to many of the main cities and towns, and you won’t have to pay for parking or gas.
Northern Ireland Trip Reviews
Railtours Ireland by Jessica C.
“Day 1: USA to Dublin I arrived around dinner time. Took the bus to Central hotel and walked to the the bar called Brazen Head. This is supposedly the oldest bar in Ireland which dates back to 1198. I met a mother-daughter couple and hung out with them. We listened to the band play Irish songs and the locals even …” Read more!
UK, Dublin, Northern Ireland & Cruise by Harry Phillips
“Recently returned from a 3 week tour and cruise. Flew from Victoria BC to Heathrow London and will say flying in the back is not fun anymore, cramped, long and boring. However with thought of an adventure at the other end it’s tolerable. Customs and immigration is painless and quick…Heathrow knows how to do …” Read more!
European Whirlwind by Amanda M.R.
“Part I. My husband and I planned this vacation for years. Three weeks in Europe: first half in the British Isles, second half in Italy, and a too-short stop in Paris in between. We knew the itinerary was ambitious, but wanted to make sure we hit the important spots — in case we never got a chance to go back. …” Read more!