BELFAST NIGHTLIFE: 10 bars and clubs you need to experience

When it comes to great drinks, fantastic live entertainment, and wild craic, it’s hard to beat Belfast. If you want to discover what Belfast nightlife is like for yourself, read on for our top ten bars and clubs you need to experience.

BELFAST NIGHTLIFE: 10 bars and clubs you need to experience.

Belfast nightlife truly does have something for everyone, from raucous club nights hosting the best DJs in the world to laid-back pubs where you can enjoy live music and flowing pints.

With a friendly atmosphere and vibrant, lively feel, you’re guaranteed a great night out in the city, no matter which night you choose to venture out.

So, to save you some time deciding, here is the lowdown on Belfast’s nightlife, with the top ten best bars and clubs you need to experience.

Ireland Before You Die’s top tips for visiting Belfast:

  • Belfast is full of great hotels for all budgets. We advise booking in advance to secure your stay for the best-value price.
  • Before visiting the bars and clubs that Belfast nightlife offers, why not line your stomach at one of the city’s incredible restaurants?
  • Belfast is a very walkable city, so there’s no need to get a taxi within the city centre.
  • Belfast is a great base for exploring the Causeway Coastal Route that leads to the famous Giant’s Causeway.

10. The Sunflower – a no-frills Belfast bar

The Sunflower is a small and understated bar.
Credit: Ireland’s Content Pool / Tourism Northern Ireland

Kicking off our ultimate guide to Belfast nightlife is the fantastic Sunflower Bar, which can be found behind Belfast Central Library.

A small and understated bar with flowing drinks, a true no-gimmicks local feel, and a dog-friendly policy, this is the perfect place to soak up the local pub culture.

Address: 65 Union St, Belfast BT1 2JG

RELATED READ: Our guide to the best dog-friendly pubs in Belfast.

9. Alibi – for a lively night out

BELFAST NIGHTLIFE: 10 bars and clubs you need to experience.
Credit: Instagram / @alibibelfast

If you’re in the mood for a good dance, then we highly recommend heading for a night out in Alibi.

This lively spot on Bradbury Place focuses on cocktails, gin, and craft beers served with a twist. A three-floor venue with a three-floor smoking terrace, you can expect nothing short of the best drinks and music here.

Address: 23-31 Bradbury Pl, Belfast BT7 1RR

8. The Morning Star – a historic Belfast bar

You can enjoy a wide range of traditional pub grub, local beers, whiskeys, gins, and a buzzing atmosphere in the Morning Star.
Credit: Facebook / The Morning Star

Located at the heart of the city centre, the Morning Star is one of the oldest bars in Belfast, dating all the way back to 1810.

An award-winning gastro-pub housed in a Grade 2 listed building, you can enjoy a wide range of traditional pub grub, local beers, whiskeys, gins, and a buzzing atmosphere.

Address: 17-19 Pottingers Entry, Belfast BT1 4DT

7. Kremlin – Ireland’s largest LGBTQ+ venue

BELFAST NIGHTLIFE: 10 bars and clubs you need to experience.
Credit: Instagram / @camerachaii

This epic LGBTQ+ nightclub is a must-visit if you’re looking for a truly unforgettable night out in the city.

Known for its vibrant atmosphere, top-quality music, and guest appearances, Kremlin first opened in 1999 and has been a Belfast institution ever since.

Kremlin is divided into three areas: a disco bar, cocktail lounge, and the Red Square, where you can find live performances and DJ sets. So, you’re sure to find the perfect vibe for you.

Address: 96 Donegall St, Belfast BT1 2GW

READ MORE: The 5 best gay bars in Belfast for 2023.

6. The Dirty Onion – an iconic Belfast pub

The Dirty Onion is the perfect place to catch up with friends.
Credit: Ireland’s Content Pool / Tourism Northern Ireland; Brian Morrison

Set in the bustling Cathedral Quarter, The Dirty Onion is an absolute must-visit when it comes to Belfast nightlife. Welcoming people of all ages and from all walks of life, this historic pub offers a sense of tradition with a modern feel.

Serving food and drinks with frequent live entertainment, the Dirty Onion is the perfect place to catch up with friends in the city.

Address: 3 Hill St, Belfast BT1 2LA

5. AMPM – a truly unique nightlife venue

BELFAST NIGHTLIFE: 10 bars and clubs you need to experience.
Credit: Facebook/ AMPM Restaurant

Whether you’re dining out, enjoying a few cocktails with friends, or want to enjoy a full-on cabaret show experience, AMPM will have something to suit.

This unique and lively venue is the perfect spot for an unforgettable night out on the town. Perfect for all occasions, you can expect an exceptional food and cocktail menu to suit all tastes.

Address: 38-42 Upper Arthur St, Belfast BT1 4GH

Limelight is a popular club and music venue.
Credit: Instagram / @babba.belfast

Open Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, Limelight is a favourite haunt among Belfast students looking for an unforgettable night out.

This spot also hosts some epic live music events, with acts such as Arctic Monkeys, Biffy Clyro, and Kaiser Chiefs having performed there in the past.

Address: 17 Ormeau Ave, Belfast BT2 8HD

3. Bittles Bar – a local favourite

BELFAST NIGHTLIFE: 10 bars and clubs you need to experience.
Credit: Instagram / @bittlesbar

For a true Belfast pub experience, there is nowhere better to visit than Bittles Bar in the city centre.

This friendly, family-run pub offers a wide selection of drinks to suit all tastes. Plus, the local artwork that adorns the walls, depicting various famous faces from across Northern Ireland, will offer plenty to keep you occupied.

Address: 70 Upper Church Ln, Belfast BT1 4QL

2. Kelly’s Cellars – a Belfast institution

Kelly’s Cellars is a must-visit while in Northern Ireland.
Credit: Ireland’s Content Pool / Tourism Northern Ireland; Brian Morrison

Undoubtedly one of the best bars in Belfast City Centre, serving a wide range of gins, ales, whiskeys, and more, Kelly’s Cellars is a must-visit while in Northern Ireland.

Offering a stunning outdoor terrace, which ranks among the best beer gardens in the city, this is the perfect place to enjoy some refreshing pints on a sunny day.

Address: 30-32 Bank St, Belfast BT1 1HL

1. Duke of York – a must for your Belfast bucket list

BELFAST NIGHTLIFE: 10 bars and clubs you need to experience.
Credit: Ireland’s Content Pool / Tourism Northern Ireland; Brian Morrison

Located in the heart of the bustling Cathedral Quarter, the Duke of York is a traditional Irish pub where you can enjoy a creamy pint of Guinness and some amazing live music.

Find Your Dream Hotel in Ireland

On the hunt for the ultimate hotel for your Irish adventure? Explore a curated selection ranging from the charming heritage of boutique accommodations in Dublin's vibrant heart to the tranquil luxury of rural retreats and the captivating coastal vistas. Start your search below to find the perfect stay with our trusted hotel partner.



An absolute must for your Belfast nightlife bucket list, this spot offers a friendly local vibe and a great selection of drinks to choose from.

Address: 7-11 Commercial Ct, Belfast BT1 2NB

Other notable mentions

Crown Liquor Saloon is a great spot to soak up the city’s history.
Credit: Ireland’s Content Pool / Tourism Northern Ireland; Brian Morrison

Crown Liquor Saloon: A tourist hotspot, the Crown Liquor Saloon is a great spot to soak up the city’s history. With a huge menu of craft beers and plenty of spirits, you’re sure to be spoilt for choice.

The Perch Rooftop Bar: One of the best rooftop bars in the city, the Perch is an elegant cocktail bar that serves a wide range of delicious food and drinks.

Margot: A must-visit for cocktails with friends, this downstairs bar offers a speakeasy-style vibe hidden below street-level beside Belfast City Hall.

MORE: Cocktails in Belfast: the 10 best bars to get your fix.

Your questions answered about Belfast nightlife

If you still have questions, you’ve come to the right place. In this section, we answer some frequently asked questions about Belfast nightlife.

BELFAST NIGHTLIFE: 10 bars and clubs you need to experience.

What time do pubs shut in Northern Ireland?

Pubs in Northern Ireland can stay open until 1 am.

Is Belfast nightlife good?

Yes, Belfast nightlife has something to suit everyone, from laid-back pubs to vibrant and buzzing nightclubs.

Is Belfast a walkable city?

Yes, Belfast City Centre is easy to walk around. However, if you want to travel further out, you can use the public transport system such as the buses and the Glider.

Find Your Dream Hotel in Ireland

On the hunt for the ultimate hotel for your Irish adventure? Explore a curated selection ranging from the charming heritage of boutique accommodations in Dublin's vibrant heart to the tranquil luxury of rural retreats and the captivating coastal vistas. Start your search below to find the perfect stay with our trusted hotel partner.



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