If a city has an area named a ‘quarter’ then it would be logical to suggest that any such place would have four such zones. From the brief research carried out for this article, Belfast has eight quarters.
Wikipedia defines the ‘Belfast quarters’ as ‘distinctive cultural zones within the city of Belfast, Northern Ireland, whose identities have been developed as a spur to tourism and urban regeneration.’
The eight are:
1. City Centre Quarter is the area around Belfast City Hall and includes St George’s Market as well as many ‘cafes, great pubs, trendy bars and an amazing restaurant scene’.
2. Cathedral Quarter is the area taking its name from St Anne’s Cathedral. This area has been traditionally the cultural hub of the city and home to the Metropolitan Arts Centre (MAC).
3. Titanic Quarter covers 75 hectares of reclaimed land adjacent to Belfast harbour. It was formerly known as Queen’s Island.
4. Linen Quarter is defined as the area south of Belfast City Hall and was dominated by warehouses of the linen trade. Belfast was known once nicknamed “Linenopolis” as the world leader in the production of linen during the 19th century. Today, it features ‘a mix of offices, chic bars and award-winning restaurants’.
5. Queen’s Quarter is the area around Queen’s University Belfast is based and covers the Ulster Museum and the Botanic Gardens.
6. Gaeltacht Quarter is based in the west of the city and is linked to a focus on the Irish language, music and culture. It is centred around the Falls Road
7. Library Quarter, located around Belfast Central Library on Royal Avenue. This area is sometimes referred to as Scotch Quarter and Press Quarter. It has been defined as the area bounded by Royal Avenue, Donegall Street, Carrick Hill and North Street.
8. Gay Quarter is located around Donegall Street and Union Street and is home to ‘Belfast’s best gay bars and clubs’.
Do you want to learn more about the history of Belfast? Check out my tours here.