The city has developed a wide range of attractions for visitors of every type. Belfast is home to Titanic Belfast, recently crowned the World’s Leading Tourist Attraction at the World Travel Awards and multi-award winning and biggest television series in the world – Game of Thrones. The city offers history and heritage, Michelin star restaurants, the warmth of its people and of course the famous Belfast “craic”. There are also world-class golf courses, breathtaking scenery and the newly opened Waterfront Conference and Exhibition Centre in the city.
The city has also played host to a number of global-scale events in the last number of years including The Tall Ships, the Giro D’Italia, World Police and Fire Games and the MTV European Music Awards.
In 2016 Belfast hotels reported record occupancy rates of 79.5 per cent and revenues increased by 9.2 per cent. New hotels are already being planned and built as the city requires more than an additional 1,000 bedrooms to meet future demand.
Ireland is bidding to host the 2023 Rugby World Cup. If successful, the games will take place throughout the island of Ireland, and Belfast will be one of the major host cities, with Casement Park and the Kingspan Stadium all included in the list of stadia in Ireland’s bid. The benefits of a successful Rugby World Cup bid will be significant, resulting in increased tourism, more trade and foreign direct investment, and significant investment in infrastructure. At the same time, the city is also launching a joint bid with Derry/Londonderry to be European City of Culture in the same year, 2023.
The city is just at the beginning of its tourism journey with demand for investment in a range of infrastructure opportunities relating to the business of tourism.