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The Ulster Museum tells the unique human story of this part of Ireland and is home to a vast array of art, historical artefacts and specimens from the natural world.
From Ireland to the South Pacific, from ancient relics to modern masterpieces, the museum offers something for everyone, from the simply curious to the enthusiast.
The museum tells the story of the people of the north of Ireland from earliest times to the present day. Impressive galleries and interactive discovery zones bring history, science and art collections to life for visitors of all ages.
The engaging and stimulating history galleries tell the story of the people of Ireland from their first arrival on the island until the present day. Visitors can gaze upon the fabulous treasure from the Spanish galleon, Girona, the best Armada collection to be seen anywhere outside of Spain. Another 'treasure' and a firm favourite with all generations is Takabuti, an Egyptian mummy from the 7th century BC. For those interested in Northern Ireland's recent history, it is sensitively explored in the newly developed Troubles Gallery.
The science galleries are a 'must-see' for anyone with an interest in the richness and diversity of the natural world. The collections uncover the story of life on earth from the earliest times and explain the forces that have shaped the environment in which we live. Highlights include 'Peter' the Polar Bear, a Minke Whale skeleton, Edmontosaurus dinosaur, as well as numerous exotic butterflies and insects.
- The Art Department which holds over 12,000 works comprising drawings, paintings, sculptures, glass, ceramics, silver, furniture, costume and textiles, covering all styles.
- The History Department holds and collects objects relating to the social, economic and political history of Ireland, with particular emphasis on Ulster from 1600 and Northern Ireland from 1921.
- The Natural Sciences Department holds over 495,000 specimens of plants, animals, fossils, minerals and rocks from Northern Ireland and beyond.
- Downloadable explorer maps, including a Kids Explorer Map. Learn how big dinosaurs really were and what a Mummy looks like. See real treasure that was lost at sea... and more.
- Interactive discovery zones bring the museum’s collections to life.
- The Museum offers a changing programme of events and exhibitions. Check out www.nmni.com for updates.
Open Year Round
Tuesday to Sunday 10:00 - 17:00
Closed Mondays except Northern Ireland Bank Holiday Mondays
Free welcome tours Tuesday to Friday at 14.30 and Sunday at 13.30. There are no tours Saturday. A maximum of 10 per tour and tours are subject to available space.
Botanic Gardens, Belfast, Co. Antrim, BT9 5AB
T: +0044(0)28 904 400 00
Closed: Mondays (except local Bank Holiday Mondays) and during Christmas - check their website for details.
Approx. visit duration: 60 to 120 minutes.
Admission is free. Please note that in line with National Museums Northern Ireland byelaws on safeguarding children & vulnerable adults policy, they reserve the right to refuse entry to any person under the age of 18 if unaccompanied by a parent, group leader or supervising adult.
Other Useful Information
Leaflets available in English, French, German, Spanish, Italian, Polish, Ulster Scots and Irish.
DINING / REFRESHMENTS
Girona Café and Restaurant is situated on the ground floor with views overlooking the Botantic Gardens. The coffee bar opens from Tuesday to Sunday from 10:00 – 16:30 and serves teas, coffees and patisseries, scones and tray bakes delivered fresh every morning as well as light snacks and soft drinks. The restaurant serves more extensive and changing menus from 12:00-15:00 including soups, 'door step' sandwiches, traditional lamb stew, locally caught fish dishes, classic Caesar salad, spaghetti carbonara… and more.
Gift Shop with a range of unique and unusual gifts inspired by the museum's collections. Over 5,000 products including locally made jewellery, toys, stationery, souvenirs, textiles, ceramics and an extensive range of books.
Coach set-down area outside the museum. Local on-street car parking is available but limited. Where possible they recommend you use the city 'park and ride' scheme or use public transport. There are Park and Ride facilities at Bridge End (east side), York Street (north side), Blacks Road and Sprucefield.
Fully accessible with accessible toilets.
Free Wi-Fi available.
The Ulster Museum is situated in Belfast's Botanic Gardens, right in the heart of the University area of South Belfast.Ulster Museum Nearby Attractions