| 18.1°C Belfast

10 things you need to know ahead of a Northern Ireland staycation


Inspirational sight: the Mournes at Newcastle

Inspirational sight: the Mournes at Newcastle

Inspirational sight: the Mournes at Newcastle

1. Self-catering, caravan parks and campsites are now open

Check in to beautiful self-catering accommodation or pitch up in caravan parks and campsites which reopened from June 26.

2. Other accommodation including hotels have reopened

Northern Ireland’s hotels have reopened for visitors to enjoy from July 3. However, spa and leisure facilities within hotels will remain closed for now and bars must serve food with table service primarily.

3. Restaurants, cafes and coffee shops have reopened from July 3

You will be able to book your favourite restaurants again, try new foodie experiences or visit cafés and coffees shops across Northern Ireland.

4. Bars have reopened from July 3, serving food and alcohol with table service

Public houses and bars have also reopened for the purposes of selling food and alcohol on a table service basis.Bars with outside spaces, such as beer gardens, will be able to use these spaces to serve alcohol on a table service basis.

5. Visitor attractions opening – please check attraction in advance to confirm opening date

Across a range of sectors, visitor attractions have begun to reopen from July 3 and across the rest of the month and into August. As attraction openings will be phased, it is also best to visit the attraction website directly to double check opening hours and to purchase tickets in advance if required.

6. Small shops and shopping centres have reopened

You can browse the shops in local areas and shopping centres across Northern Ireland as they are now open again.

7. Public transport available and operational

Northern Ireland is easy to get around and Translink public transport routes are still operating to explore all areas. The services include cross-border bus and train routes. It is advised to check with your provider before travelling as some routes are operating a slightly reduced service.

8. Some new booking systems have been introduced

It is best to double check any locations you visit as they may have introduced new measures and booking systems. For example, National Trust has started to open gardens and parks but to keep everyone safe you must book your visit in advance. They release new tickets every Friday and are opening more gardens and parks every week.

9. Visit safely with social distancing

Social distancing measures of 1m are in place across Northern Ireland from June 29, to ensure the safety of everyone. Plan your visits in line with ongoing restrictions.

10. Plan your itinerary

You can take your trip towards new adventures without getting a flight, with packed explorations to discover in Northern Ireland. It is strongly recommended to plan your itinerary and book in advance to avoid disappointment. With stunning mountain and coastal walks and chances to explore the fresh air, check out localcouncil websites for carpark updates before you start your adventure.

Belfast Telegraph