This world of ours is filled with incredible natural beauty but not all of it is just a short drive up the road from Dublin.
Northern Ireland has so much to see and do and if you’re planning a fun-filled short break with mates you won’t be short of options.
Once you’ve sorted out your itinerary, the only thing left to do is figure out where to lay your hat for the night. Given that all of the region’s major attractions are in close proximity to each other, travel distances will be minimal regardless of where you stay.
From the bright lights of Belfast to the peaceful surrounds of the Mourne Mountains, there are plenty of affordable and unusual options when it comes to booking your accommodation.
Get your friends together and take your pick from the following options.
1. Bullitt – Belfast
Comfortable and affordable city centre accommodation can often be hard to find. Bullitt Hotel in Belfast though, prides itself on offering a quality place to stay with no hidden costs. The best part? It’s smack bang in the middle of the city on Church Lane.
Guests can choose from three types of room – dinky, comfy and roomy – so you’re guaranteed a bed that will suit your budget and group size.
While there, you should check out the Tipsy Tea on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. Who doesn’t love savoury sandwiches, sweet treats and delicious cocktails?
2. Bubbledomes – Finnlough
Has your mother ever accused you of living in a bubble? Well, now you can prove her right.
The Bubble Domes at Finnlough in beautiful Co. Fermanagh have taken Instagram by storm recently and have to be the most unusual way to spend some quality time with mates in Ireland. Put your head down and gaze at the night sky, all the while being sheltered by a 180 degree transparent dome.
Each one contains an ensuite bathroom as well as a coffee machine for that morning pick-me-up before you head out for a range of on-site activities, making memories that you and your gang will cherish for the rest of your days.
Cycling, fishing and water sports and all are catered for and there’s even a spa to wind down once you’ve finished for the day.
Be sure to make time to capture that perfect Insta shot before you leave.
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3. Blackrock B & B – Portrush
Some of the most spectacular scenery in the country can be found along the northern coast and Portrush really is the jewel in the crown.
Blackrock House is a five-star B & B which offers guests the choice of four luxury rooms, each with access to stunning views of the Giant’s Causeway.
Always popular with outdoorsy types, Blackrock House is right in the middle of Game of Thrones® filming territory making it the perfect spot for any TV buffs to base themselves.
The breakfast is a real show-stopper here and the decor is dreamy. Blackrock House is selected as the first in Northern Ireland to join Boutique and Breakfast’s exclusive luxury bed and breakfast portfolio – easy to see why!
4. Shipquay Hotel – Derry
Make like a true Derry Girl and enjoy a short stay in Northern Ireland’s famed walled city.
The Shipquay is a beautiful boutique hotel just a stone’s throw from the city’s major landmarks including the famous Guildhall and the renowned City Walls.
Choose from 21 cosy bedrooms and enjoy a sumptuous cocktail at exquisite Lock & Quay Bar where you’ll also find an extensive range of craft beers and a vast wine selection.
5. Green Holiday Cottages – Kilkeel, Co. Down
These adorable self-catering cottages are situated in the tranquil surroundings of the Kingdom Of Mourne in Co. Down.
Just a short drive from Dublin, groups can make use of the outdoor kitchen areas complete with pizza ovens and bbqs as you’re left to your own devices in the secluded riverside setting.
The surrounding Mourne Mountains provide ample opportunity to stretch the legs and there are a number of cycling tracks for the two-wheel enthusiasts among your party.
An ideal staycation location if you’re after a bit of peace and quiet away from the hustle and bustle of the city.
6. AC Hotel – Belfast
Located at Belfast Harbour, this modern urban retreat is within walking distance of all of Belfast’s top tourist attractions.
Worried about letting yourself go during your stay? The AC Fitness Room will see to that, providing cardiovascular equipment to work off any excesses, while the riverside terrace gives guests the chance to unwind in a laid-back city centre environment.
Later on, gather the gang and dine at the delightful new Novelli at City Quays restaurant which is owned by multi-Michelin-starred chef Jean-Christophe Novelli.
7. Tepee Valley – Co. Armagh
An alternative sleepover experience that will be enjoyed by people of all ages.
Located close to the small town of Markethill in Co. Armagh, just one hour north of Dublin, Tepee Valley does exactly what it says on the tin. Guests can stay in traditional Native American tepees, as well as a choice of two yurts, a log cabin and even a geodome.
Take a step away from the daily grind with this unique ‘back to basics’ experience. Check out their Facebook page here.