A guide to living in East Belfast
Do you plan on living in East Belfast? If so check out our handy guide to what’s best in the east of the city.
Firstly the culture of East Belfast is exemplified by just a few of the greats who hail from the area. George Best played football on its streets, CS Lewis wrote the infamous Chronicles of Narnia while Van Morrison realised his singing potential here.
Secondly Victorian terrace houses line leafy avenues, while close-knit communities offer a truly homely feel, which proves unsurprisingly popular with families.
Thirdly the abundance of areas, each with their own individual traits, give East Belfast tons of charm. Ballyhackamore has established a real name for itself in recent years, while Belmont Road, Cregagh Road and Ravenhill offer an exciting collection of eateries and retailers.
Fashion fans from all areas of Belfast flock to Bloomfield Avenue, renowned for its stylish selection of independent boutiques.
The city centre and surrounding Newtownards and County Down countryside are easily accessible thanks to reliable public network systems.
Who is East Belfast ideal for?
Both families and first-time buyers choose the east of the city, thanks to the perfect mixture of schools, shops, restaurants and entertainment facilities. Living in East Belfast offers easy access to the rest of the city, making its location a superb vantage point for city and suburban living.
Where to eat in East Belfast?
- Greens Pizza: A popular family destination, Greens Pizza focuses on the freshest ingredients from local suppliers, which has earned it the reputation as one of the best pizza purveyors in all of Belfast.
- General Merchants: Relatively new to the Belfast dining scene, General Merchants brings something different to the table, deservedly earning a solid reputation for turning casual dining on its head. Carefully chosen flavours combine together to keep customers returning.
- Il Pirata: For rustic Italian cooking, make Il Pirata your first port of call. The Guardian food critic, Joe Warwick sang its praises, which isn’t surprising given the restaurant’s skilfully prepared array of dishes.
- Graze: If gin and tapas tantalise your taste buds, have your needs easily met at Graze. The trendy eatery with contemporary décor sources local, seasonal produce and the result is spectacularly creative dishes.
- Bennetts Bistro: Situated on the Belmont Road, Bennetts Bistro is popular with those who crave good food in relaxed surroundings.
- Baker Street: Contemporary yet casual, Baker Street is ideal for the diner seeking fresh, honest food, served by skilful staff in stylish surroundings.
What to do in East Belfast?
- CS Lewis Square: Located at the intersection of the Connswater and Comber Greenways, The Chronicles of Narnia comes to life. Erected to honour author C.S Lewis, his highly acclaimed work is portrayed through seven bronze sculptures in a stunning display of public art.
- Stormont Estate: Standing grandly on the hill, Stormont Estate is open to the public for recreation. From here, meander through the Long Woodland Walk and discover the beauty of the area.
- Hillmount Garden Centre: One of Northern Ireland’s leading garden centres, Hillmount appeals to more than just the keen gardener. With unrivalled shopping, Gardeners Rest Café and regular events, it makes for the perfect family day out.
- Orangefield Park: Orangefield Park combines recreational facilities in an attractive parkland. Take advantage of the area’s bowling green, tennis court, outdoor gym, soccer pitches and cycling track, or simply stroll through the area and discover its natural beauty.
- Victoria Park: Residing near the Connswater River, the beauty of Victoria Park is exemplified by its lake, which a wide variety of seabirds regularly flock to. Elsewhere in the park, you’ll find soccer pitches, bowling green and a cycling track.
- We Are Vertigo: Thrill seekers easily get their kicks at We Are Vertigo’s Titanic Park venue. As one of Europe’s biggest trampoline parks and adventure centres, it also houses a ski centre and spa, ensuring there truly is something for everyone.
- Streamvale Open Farm: Escape to the east of the city and take in the charm of the countryside at the highly praised Streamvale Open Farm. At Streamvale children are encouraged to interact with the animals, through feeding, holding and even grooming them. A fun-filled family day out for sure.
Schools in East Belfast
- Bloomfield Collegiate: The school was founded in 1905 and has a prestigious history with its alumni including Naomi Long, Christine Bleakley & Elaine Shemilt. Bloomfield Collegiate prides itself on their academic achievement and its choice of extra-curricular activities.
- Campbell College: Campbell College was established in 1894 and sits in a mature 100-acre site and offers to board over 120 pupils. Campbell College is renowned for its academic and sporting success, with C.S Lewis being its most notable alumni.
- Grosvenor Grammar School: Founded in 1945, Grosvenor Grammar School has a strong reputation for its high standards of achievement and innovation. Alongside its rich curriculum, Grosvenor also offers a wide array of extra-curricular activities and is known for its sporting achievement.
- Our Lady & St Patrick’s College: Established in 1985 as a Co-Educational Voluntary Grammar School, Our Lady & St Patrick’s College was an amalgamation of Sacred Heart of Mary Grammar School & St Patrick’s College. The school prides itself of encouraging pupils to fulfil their full potential within a supportive Christian environment.
- Strathearn School: Built in 1864, Strathearn all girls school officially opened in 1929 and housed 63 pupils. The modern day school now provides education and training to over 750 pupils. Strathearn prides itself on encouraging independence, creativity and curiosity within its learning.