Hello lovelies! It's been a million years since I've posted but I am hoping you will all forgive me and also give me some good advice on this trip I'm planning :)
My man and I are planning to go to Belfast and Scotland over the Christmas/New Year's holiday this year and we are looking for some recommendations for places to stay, eat, go, etc. I have looked at all the threads here and got some Glasgow info (yes I enjoyed that 9 page thread!) but hopefully you have some additional ideas?
We like to think we aren't 'typical' american tourists in that we kind of just like hanging out in random places. So a great night for us would be to go to a local pub for some pints and live music and meet some locals (ok, why does that now sound like typical american tourist?!). Not hugely into museums but I read that Kelvingrove in Glasgow is great so we may try that. Also love funky old bookstores, shopping at thrift stores and looking for vintage clothes, going to non-chain breweries and distilleries.
More about us that may help: we are really into traditional music and good live music of all kinds, beer/ale (we homebrew), yummy vegan food of course. My husband is also really into rebel irish music (so much so that he is learning irish tenor banjo!), probably his ultimate dream would be to go to a pub and see Battering Ram play but of course that can't happen, and--apologies in advance if this offends or hurts anyone--we are interested in the history of 'the troubles' so we want to walk around and look at all the murals in Belfast and any other related things you might know of to learn more about the history and culture?
We found this bar online that has 'rebel sundays' in Belfast called The Rock--is that a really cheesy place or is it cool?
The tentative plan so far is to go to Belfast for 3 nights and then ferry across to Scotland to Glasgow for a few nights. Then we'd like to make it back up to the highlands (10 years ago we got married in Aviemore so would like to visit there a night or two). Probably will also stay a night or two in Kingussie/Newtonmore and may try to hit one of the islands or Oban.
Any recommendations for fun/quirky hotels to stay at? We aren't fancy but like nice clean, quaint hotels/inns that have a decent pub attached. What are the best areas of town to stay in for Belfast and Glasgow? We won't have a car so we'd like to be city center-ish walking distance to all the cool places to go. Any bars/pubs/activities recommended? I'm pretty sure it will be cold/rainy/sleety/snowy so I guess there won't be much fun outside to be had (at least before a few pints ha ha).
Omg, sorry this is so long and thank you in advance for any advice you have!!!