Members of the ARMA Executive Office recently took their very first trip to the booming capital of Northern Ireland and we thought you would like to know why it is we picked Belfast as our destination for ARMA’s Annual Conference 2019.
First order of business, travel to Belfast via Edinburgh Airport. We boarded an early bird 7:20am flight – eager to make the most of our day out in the politically rich city- before coffees had been finished we’d already arrived at our destination within 40 minutes. We were then swiftly whisked off to our first stop in the City, the ICC Belfast, where we will be hosting our conference next year.
As we took a very short 15-minute taxi drive to the centre of the City from Belfast City airport, we were able to experience the breath-taking views of the Belfast Hills, that surrounds the compact city as a spectacular back drop.
The Belfast Waterfront is something to behold. With a prime spot next to the River Lagan and a view of the infamous Harland and Wolff gantry cranes, it’s easy to see why the conference centre has glass panels all around the exterior. With over 30 event spaces, we were already mentally mapping our programme and coming up with ideas.
After a quick stop lunch on Howard Street, the go-to spot for dining and only a short 10 minute walk from the venue, it was time to find out what Belfast was all about.
The first thing to note is, Belfast City is the 2nd most successful city in the UK, after London City. It is the birth place of the Olympic-class trio: Titanic, Olympic and Britannic; host to the Game of Thrones studios and a interesting cultural destination. To get an idea of Belfast’s political history, we took a Black Taxi Tour and were taken through the city’s timeline. The political taxi tours are a fantastic way to experience the troubles and see the city’s progress in the peace process.
After experiencing how far Belfast had come, it was time to visit another piece of the history that moulds the Northern Irish city, the Titanic Experience. The exhibition is something we would highly recommend our members take the time to visit while joining us for our annual conference next year. The experience takes you through the facts, myths and legends of the famous Titanic liner, while giving you the opportunity to walk the decks, examine artefacts and learn about the gruelling 3 years it took to build the ship. It also gives you the opportunity to listen to survivors, view the radio script records of the night it went down and experience a 3D tour of the ship. As a huge part of the make up of Belfast, it’s something that cannot be missed while on your visit.
When the day finally came to it’s end, we were suitably charmed by the unique culture and the climate, and looked forward to our next visit. Until next time, Belfast!
Early bird registration is now open until 18 April 2019.