Since opening its doors in 2012 to mark the 100th anniversary of the Titanic’s fateful maiden voyage, Titanic Belfast has rocketed to the top of Northern Ireland’s tourist attractions, drawing over a million visitors in its first year. It seems fitting that the city should host the world’s largest Titanic visitor experience; after all, this was the city where the world’s most luxurious ship was built and first launched. Today, the area of Belfast Harbor that once housed the RMS Titanic has been renamed the Titanic Quarter and is dominated by the towering silver façade of the Titanic Belfast, a remarkable building fashioned from four ship-hull-shaped wings. The futuristic building is home to the state-of-the-art Titanic Belfast exhibition, which spreads over 6 floors and includes interactive discovery zones, full-scale reconstructions, real-life accounts and mind-blowing special effects.
Belfast Castle sits high above the city on Cave Hill, looking the very picture of baronial splendor (it's built in the Scottish Baronial style, like the Queen's house Balmoral).
There's been a castle on this site since the 12th century, but this one dates from the 1860s. It was built by the 3rd Marquis of Donegall. It went wildly over budget and, as the Marquis' fortunes had changed, nearly didn't get finished at all.
Today it's a working castle, earning its keep with wedding receptions, conferences, an antique store and an adventure playground. At the visitors center you can find out all about the history of the Castle Hill site.
Noticed a cat motif around the place? It's all down to a legend that says all will be well with the castle's residents as long as there is a white cat in situ.