2011-07-08

An English Students Guide to Uni in Belfast  

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If you didn't know originally, I'm from a town in the North-West of England called Burnley. I went to Belfast for Uni becuase I had a family background from there and had always thought of it as as much my home as Burnley itself.

However not all young English people who chose to go to Belfast for Uni have that background. Some are understandably worried or unsure of what to expect when they get there.

The legacy of the troubles still lives on in people minds, however for an English student in Belfast this is a complete non-issue. In my three years at QUB never once did I hear of English people getting in any sort of bother becuase of their nationality. Although the catholic/protestant divide is still there, it's not antagonistic.

Interestingly however, just within the first couple weeks of living in halls social groups were formed largely on Catholic/Protestant backgrounds without anyone seeming to be consciously choosing who they hung around with on those lines. For me this wasn't a negative, just an interesting feature of living in Belfast. Similar to the rivalry between City and United fans in Manchester, although without the violence.

Also at this point, if the reader does still not believe me, it's worth mentioning that Belfast was recently voted the safest city in the UK.

In terms of the drinking culture, Belfast has always reminded me of the North English town I grew up in. People have their own way of speaking that is very different from standard English. Where as in Burnley you would have a 'Meat Pie' for your tea, in Belfast you'd get a 'Cowboy Supper' or a 'Curry Chip'.

The bars in Belfast have some fantastic history and there are some fantastic spots for people of any taste. The major two differences between Belfast and towns in England is the prices and the opening hours.

Belfast can be quite expensive, outside the Student Union the average price of a pint is about £3.20. Almost all the bars close at 1-1:30AM, even on a Saturday Night. Belfast has a few regular clubs that open till 3am, however it has nothing like a Walkabout which you'd get in England, a Bar during the day that turns into a late night club at night.

One of my favorite things about Belfast is how friendly everyone is, I was only there a few days and I was already friends with born and bread Belfast people with who I continue to be friends with today.

Culturally, the city has some fantastic art gallery's, murals and historic spots if that's your thing. My favourite day in Belfast was probably walking around little alleyways in the city centre with my Dad looking at statues and paintings you'd never knew existed if you didn't know where to look.

Belfast is a brilliant city and I couldn't recommend it more to anyone, no-matter where you're from.

As always, if you have any questions email me, the adress is on the right of the page. And if you'd 'like' the Facebook box I'd appreciate it.

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