Northern Ireland Tourism & Visitor Guide
Welcome to Northern Ireland!
Northern Ireland's recent history of conflict belies its deep roots in culture, education and music. Writers Oscar Wilde and Samuel Beckett were born here, as were actors Liam Neeson and Kenneth Branagh. Van Morrison's hometown of Belfast features heavily in his lyrics, signifying the importance of having a place to return.
In accordance with the Government of Ireland Act of 1920, the Unionist counties of Antrim, Armagh, Down, Fermanagh, Londonderry and Tyrone were split from the rest of the island to form Northern Ireland, headed from the capital of Belfast. The city's Ulster Museum preserves the country's history, specifically its relationship with the sea. To the east of Belfast lies Carrickfergus and its 1,000-year-old Norman castle, and surfers ride the waves at Portstewart. The Giant's Causeway appears impossibly man-made, and southern Armagh is Northern Ireland's earliest settlement, and also where, in 445 AD, Saint Patrick established his main Church in Ireland. The walls of Derry were never penetrated during its 17th century siege, earning it the moniker, "The Maiden City".