Categories: accommodation

If you’re looking for a romantic getaway with a difference, you’ve come to the right place. In among Northern Ireland’s city hotels, castles and friendly B&Bs are some very unusual holiday locations. In truth, some may well be a city hotel or a castle but they’ll have lashings of attitude and a unique spirit which makes them all the more interesting.

Belfast – the buzziest city around

George Best House is the childhood home of footballing legend George Best, a dreamer at heart whom the whole world fell in love with. It was from here that he set off to join the famous Manchester United and take the football world by storm. If you’ve secretly dreamed of following in his footsteps, spend a night or two here and who knows what could follow?

Or meet Dinky, Comfy and Roomy at Bullitt Hotel. Cosy rooms that have everything you actually need for a city centre stay. King size beds, rain showers and super-fast Wi-Fi. 

Kate Winslet and Leo DiCaprio said it with tears in the movie epic Titanic. Now you can say it for real where the real thing began, at the very authentic Titanic Hotel – the one-time Harland & Wolff Headquarters and Drawing Offices. Handy for the world-famous Titanic Belfast attraction, you’d think. Just open the door and you’re there.

Magical Antrim, your way

With rooms called Lapwing, Heron, Brown Trout and Irish Hare, you know the beautifully styled Ballylagan Organic Farm is somewhere very special. A private promenade takes you to the shore at Abbey Self-Catering (5*) three stunning properties in the grounds of a Georgian mansion. And it doesn’t get much more romantic than the Barbican at Glenarm, practically your own mini-Castle. 

At their prime in the glory days of Belfast shipping (they guided Titanic on her journey), the restored Blackhead Lightkeepers Cottages have unrivalled views across the Irish Sea. Fool’s Haven (4*), a gem of a thatched cottage, overlooks Belfast Lough, where you’ll also find the 150-year-old Coastguard Boathouse (3*) and shipwrecks on the beach. 

Even more out of the ordinary, yet close to everything you want, the quirky Clydesdale Shepherd’s Hut packs modern comfort into a very tiny space. The Old Flax Mill harks back to Belfast’s industrial past and the Foxborough Bubble Den brings you bang up to date with a night in a Bubble and under the stars.

Pottering about Armagh

Ballydougan Pottery Courtyard Cottages make for a dreamy romantic getaway with pottery classes on site, if you wish. Memories of Ghost, anyone? There are memories to be made too at Tepee Valley. Here, glamping comes in all shapes and sizes, from yurts and gypsy caravans to a Geodesic dome – for extra special views.

Close to Craigavon,The Old School House is now the most romantic of country retreats. Or you might prefer self-catering in a Post House apartment, probably not one you’ve thought of before.

Tales of the Causeway Coast

Storytelling is part of the fabric of Northern Irish life and at Ballyeamon Barn in Cushendall you get to create one of your own. Here, at the hostel, you mix with local musicians, singers and tellers of tales to experience the folklore, music and dance of the Antrim Glens. Something out of the ordinary and certainly unforgettable.

As is Rathlin Island, a bird colony and puffin paradise off the coast of Ballycastle. Take the ferry across and arrive to a warm welcome at the Manor House Hotel. And from any passing guillemots, kittiwakes, razorbills and fulmars.

For transport of another kind, try Castlerock Classics Vintage VW Camper Van. Not that you’ll get very far in their 1979 Devon conversion as she’s fully kitted out for a quirky and fun stay. For the record, her name is Sally.

If you prefer to be under canvas, try Swann’s Bridge Luxury Bell Tents near Limavady. Everything’s provided. So all you need to bring is your sense of adventure. While at Bushmills, you’ll find Aunt Rachel’s Causeway Coast Wigwams. 

On to Derry-Londonderry

Art House or Jazz House? You choose. Two Edwardian townhouses, one inspired by the glamour of the roaring 20’s, the other by the 1930’s Speak-Easy era. Both are just five minutes from the city centre – and like nothing you’ve seen before. 

Bishop’s Gate Hotel Apartments are boutique self-catering within the famous city walls, where you’ll also find the Sorley Boys Snug – a loft-style sanctuary for couples who want to get away from it all. Yet still be at the heart of it. 

There’s a guesthouse with literary links in nearby Magherafelt, just 10 minutes from Nobel Laureate Seamus Heaney’s birthplace. Laurel Villa Townhouse (4*) has a collection of Heaney memorabilia, rare special editions and run specialist tours on his life and work.

Winding down in County Down

Larchfield Estate Cottages (5*) hides a truly romantic getaway gem. Myrtle Luxury Glamping Truck is a beautifully adapted and fitted out 1952 Saurer Swiss Army truck - complete with a wood burning stove, under bed heating, sauna and fire pit. 
Donaghadee’s boutique B&B, One Shore Street (5*), is ultimate luxury with cashmere mattresses and the sounds of the harbour outside. There’s 17th century elegance at The Manor House, close to the legendary Grace Neils - reputedly the oldest pub in Ireland. And extreme amounts of waterside charm at the enchanting Boathouse on Sketrick Island. 

The Old Bank – it really was a bank, it has its own vault - is now a cool and quirky Portaferry base. And you can still see the original mill workings at stylish B&B, the Mill at Baloo.

If you like that top of the world feeling, the three-storey Helen’s Tower is a castle made for two, with sky-high views that go on forever.

Fermanagh and its islands

It’s just a short ferry ride to Lusty Beg Island in County Fermanagh and an unbelievably romantic lakeside setting. Spectacular views, a spa retreat and a fairy trail are just part of this unique experience. The stunning Belle Isle offers a magical castle stay or a cosy cottage break. While Finn Lough Bubble Dome delivers something completely different - back to nature in a Forest Bubble Dome. Four-poster beds, all mod cons and transparent walls for star gazing.

If your dream getaway is an on-board one, take to Lough Erne in a luxury Carrick Craft motor cruiser. It’s like a cottage on the water. And it’s suitable for rookie seafarers. Training is given before you set out. Or take to the waterways in a wide-beam barge with Riversdale Barges. They’re more comfortable than a traditional narrowboat, with more living space too.

Time for Tyrone

It’s chilling time at An Creagán with peace and quiet, forest trials and newly restored self-catering cottages. While the romance of a country estate – and a choice of award-winning courtyard residences – is yours at Blessingbourne Courtyard Apartments.

Or find time for cosy. With a turf fire, a free-standing bath and a four-poster bed, Rosehill House has romance in its bones. Though beneath the country charm, there’s a whole lot of modern day luxury.

Every romantic getaway should be unforgettable. And with places as unusual as these, it certainly will be. Of course, getaways make unusual gifts too. Give a holiday to someone you love (so you can come too) or surprise your friends or family. There’s something for everyone in Northern Ireland. You just have to take every chance to enjoy it.

Bullitt Hotel
Hotel
Bullitt Hotel

At Bullitt, our no-nonsense philosophy means we’ve ditched the expensive mini-bars, bellboys and butlers so that we can deliver a top-quality service with no hidden costs.

Titanic Belfast
Visitor Centres & Museums
Titanic Belfast

Welcome to Titanic Belfast, an award-winning visitor experience offering the opportunity to learn about Titanic’s history, just a few minutes from where the ship herself was famously designed, built and launched in 1911. This self-guided tour tells the Titanic’s story from conception through to its first and final journey across the Atlantic, as well as the historical and cultural impact on Belfast and beyond.

Abbey Self Catering - May Lodge
Self-Catering
Abbey Self Catering - May Lodge

Three fantastic 5 Star properties located by the shore overlooking and with private access to Belfast Lough. They are conveniently located to the main motorway network so are an ideal base for exploring the Antrim Coast.

Fools Haven Thatched Cottage
Self-Catering
Fools Haven Thatched Cottage

This gem of a thatched cottage is over 250 years old and is situated at the start of the Causeway Coast and Glens Route, opposite the Andrew Jackson Cottage on the shores of Belfast Lough.

Coastguard Boathouse
Self-Catering
bedroom can sleep four people .

A must for sea, dog and heritage lovers - the Boathouse is so close to the sea that its waves often touch it’s windows. Unique panoramic views of the Lough. Safe & completely self contained, with village life nearby, and Belfast less 10 mins away. Stunning sunrises and sun sets, Watch cruise ship sail by and relax in covered outdoor eating area.

Ballydougan Pottery Courtyard Cottages - Potters Cottage
Self-Catering
Ballydougan Pottery Courtyard Cottages - Potters Cottage

Welcome to Bramley Apple Cottage, Wheat Loft Apartment, Gaskins Grove, Potters Cottage and Dobson’s Corner. Wonderful self catering holiday cottages within the enclosed courtyard at Ballydougan Pottery.

The Old School House
Self-Catering
The Old School House

The Old School House is a beautiful and spacious country home. It sleeps 8 adults, with 3 twin bedrooms and 1 double all with ensuite facilities. A cot and highchair are also available. A fully equipped kitchen and full size snooker table add to ...

Post House Apartment D
Self-Catering
Post House Apartment D

The Post House apartment in picturesque Waringstown is the ideal location for a base to tour the heart of Ireland, or a weekend relaxing, perhaps a little retail therapy, or participating in your favourite sport or past time.

Laurel Villa Townhouse
Guest House
Outside image of Laurel Villa with greenery on walls and red door

Laurel Villa is Trip Advisor's number one place to stay in the Magherafelt area and when you read our reviews it is easy to see why. We are ideally located within a 45 minute drive from Belfast, Derry, Giant's Causeway and Northern Ireland airports.

Rose Cottage Larchfield Estate
Self-Catering
Image shows large bathroom with roll top bath and large mirror above it. Large rug. armchair, wash basin with storage underneath

Renovated to a very high standard. Double bedroom, spacious bathroom with roll top bath, kitchen with mod cons, sitting room with double sofa bed, ensuite bathroom with rain shower. Patio. Luxury breakfast hamper. Entrance via Bailliesmills Road.

Courtyard Rooms at Lusty Beg
Guest Accommodation
Courtyard Rooms at Lusty Beg

What looks like a little row of cosy terraced houses hosts all of our Courtyard Bedrooms. Each house is uniquely structured to contain 3 to 4 individual courtyard bedrooms. Each are decorated in a true “Lusty Beg” style encapsulating the traditional comforts you would expect from a hotel. Our Courtyard rooms are made up of both Classic and Superior rooms.

Belle Isle Castle
Guest House
Belle Isle Castle

Nestling close to the water's edge and set within a landscape of lakes and islands of gently rolling hills and fragrant woods, Belle Isle Castle provides self catering or fully catered accommodation.

Belle Isle Estate - The Courtyard Cottages - Chestnut
Self-Catering
belle isle

Old listed farm yard dated 1860 converted into 8 apartments in 1998. Three bedrooms, two bedrooms or single bedroom. No. 6 has children's loft with four single beds. No.s seven and eight are suitable for disabled persons. WiFi available.

An Creagán (2 bedroom) - Crockmacann
Self-Catering
An Creagán (2 bedroom) - Crockmacann

Get away from it all, relax & unwind at An Creagán self catering cottages, designed in a traditional style with a contemporary twist, the cottages have been fitted with solar panels & pallet burning stoves to create a comfortable warmth & atmosphere

Blessingbourne Courtyard Apartments - Gate Lodge
Self-Catering
Blessingbourne Gate Lodge with outside seating area

Enjoy a short break to the fairytale 5 Star ‘Gate Lodge Apartment’ at Blessingbourne. The 3 Bedroom Gate Lodge,is the newest addition to our collection of Award Winning self-catering accommodation which also includes five Courtyard Apartments.