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What is the best area to stay in Belfast? By Vladyslav Bielan

Places To Stay In Belfast

Set on the banks of the River Lagan, Belfast is a fascinating city that’s shaking off its troubled past to welcome a new generation of visitors. It’s home to outstanding museums, a newly developed maritime district and a nightlife that’s second to none.

Whether it’s for tourism, business or educational purposes, the only difficult bit about visiting Belfast is choosing where to stay. The city comprises four official “quarters” and several surrounding suburbs, each with a unique architectural style and atmosphere. In this article, discover what each area offers to help make an informed decision the next time you’re looking for a place to rent in Belfast.

City Centre

Belfast’s city centre is a lively hub of commerce, culture and architectural diversity, making it an ideal place to stay for first-time visitors. Art Deco buildings stand juxtaposed against stately Georgian shopfronts, reflecting the city’s complex history. Its central location means you can easily access all of Belfast’s attractions, together with the best restaurants, cafes and bars.

When renting in the City Centre, you can wander the area’s pedestrianised streets to admire the 19th-century City Hall or enjoy the calming oasis of its surrounding gardens. This district is also Belfast’s main shopping area, with chic boutiques found within Victoria Square.

Cathedral Quarter

Nightlife seekers and culture vultures alike flock to Belfast’s Cathedral Quarter, which lies just to the north of the city centre. Named after the majestic St. Anne’s Cathedral, this cobblestoned district is home to art galleries, photography exhibits and live performance venues, such as MAC and the Black Box.

But it’s after dark when the Cathedral Quarter really comes to life, with iconic venues that include the John Hewitt and Ollie’s. During the summer months, food festivals and live concerts take place in Custom House Square, which is an easy walk from most Cathedral Quarter rentals.

Titanic Quarter

Just across the river from Belfast’s city centre is the Titanic Quarter, which occupies the historic shipyard grounds. The area pays tribute to Belfast’s maritime heritage, with highlights including the enormous Titanic museum. The slipway that launched the ill-fated vessel has been transformed into a lively public space hosting concerts and events.

Wander along the riverside promenade to see the Tory Island lighthouse and admire the World War II HMS Caroline. Also not to miss when renting in the Titanic Quarter are the state-of-the-art filming studios where “Game of Thrones” was created.

Stay In Belfast

Gaeltacht Quarter

On the western edge of Belfast is the city’s beating Gaelic heart – the Gaeltacht Quarter – which is home to many of the city’s 50,000+ Irish language speakers. At every turn, it celebrates Irish music, arts and culture, with the vibrant Cultúrlann hub being the epicentre.

While much of the city has been reinvigorated with modern development, the Gaeltacht Quarter retains its original charm, making it a great place to rent in Belfast. Among the independent shops run by families for generations is striking street art that illustrates the city’s storied past.

Queen’s Quarter

A short stroll from Belfast’s bustling city centre leads you to the leafy grounds of Queen’s University, an educational hub that bustles with student life. As you wander beneath its red-brick archways and along the tree-lined paths, you’ll be transported back to the university’s 19th-century origins.

When renting in the Queen’s Quarter, you can browse the shelves of independent bookstores before grabbing a bite at one of the eclectic cafes. Amble through the newly restored Botanic Gardens or by admire the global artefacts on display at the Ulster Museum. After dark, the bars and pubs surrounding the university ignite with live music.

Smithfield and Union

More than just murals await visitors in Smithfield and Union, which lies a stone’s throw north of Belfast’s city centre. It’s home to the historic Smithfield Market and the Belfast Central Library, as well as the Art Deco-style Bank of Ireland building. Colourful artworks now adorn the neighbourhood’s once bare concrete walls, making it one of Belfast’s most Instagrammable places to rent a property.

Since Ulster University expanded its campus in 2013, trendy underground pubs have sprung up around Library Street. For decades, Union Street and Upper Donegal Street have been the heart of Belfast’s LGBTQ+ nightlife scene, making the neighbourhood one of the city’s most progressive areas.

Ballyhackamore

A short bus ride east of Belfast will take you to the charming village of Ballyhackamore, which is affectionately known as “Ballyhack” by locals. This unassuming suburb has established a reputation as Belfast’s “Culinary Capital” – in just over a square mile, you’ll find everything from upscale restaurants to traditional fish and chip shops.

Ballhackamore prides itself on its close-knit community and offers an authentic slice of Belfast life for those who choose to rent a property here. In recent years, the area has flourished with the opening of upmarket salons, independent boutiques and a good choice of coffee shops, many of which are dog-friendly.

Find the perfect Belfast accommodation

No matter which area of Belfast you choose to stay in, you’ll find a diverse choice of accommodation at Rentola. This user-friendly platform boasts one of the largest databases of Belfast rentals in the United Kingdom, meaning there is something to suit all tastes.

When searching for a property to rent on Rentola, you can filter results based on price, location and number of bedrooms, helping you find the perfect stay in Northern Ireland. Average rental prices in the capital are just over £1,000 per calendar month for a two or three-bedroom property and around £850 for a one-bedroom apartment or studio.

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