What does one do with little less than a day to spend in Belfast? A walking tour, of course!
Thank goodness the Belfast Tourism Office has a left luggage area, otherwise I’d have been dragging along a 30-pound duffle and carrying my pack through Republican Falls Road while trying to take photos. They made it very easy to drop off, though dragging a bag up a small set of stairs in the middle of the place does tend to cause a wee bit of noise.
I met up with a walking tour group called Coiste, which is mostly staffed by former IRA members and/or prisoners. I walked, feeling a wee bit lost because Google Maps does some weird things with roadways in N. Ire, over to the Falls Road area and met up with an “Old IRA” tour guide and an Aussie. We saw the numerous painted murals spread throughout the Republican side of Belfast, an IRA museum, a wall of remembrance, and a cemetery heavily laden with IRA members.
Let me be very clear on one thing and then we’ll just swoop into photos: I am not a supporter of the Republican party, nor am I supporter of the Unionist party. I’m an American and the only thing I have on the subject of a “free Ireland” is opinion. My opinion doesn’t matter. I don’t live there and therefore am ignorant to the entire situation and complexities that make up Northern Ireland. I may delve a bit into it when I post my camera photos, but for now, we’ll just look at pictures.
My next post has me in Scotland spending time at lunch with a 70-year old woman along a seaside village before a 15-mile hike on the Knoydart Peninsula!