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Does anyone know personally what Belfast is like?

Just wondered if anyone on here knows what Belfast is like as my eldest daughter's father has moved there and wants me to let her stay with him for a couple of weeks. She is only 10 and I watch the news etc and hear only bad. Does anyone have any experience of Belfast recently or otherwise?
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    I think it's pretty much like other cities and it depends on where you live. No doubt there are some nightmare areas but I would think the vast majority is full of ordinary people just like anywhere else.
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    When locals say "fill ems" they actually mean films.
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    Went on a Stag weekend to Belfast about 5 years ago. Whilst it is hard to avoid the city's troubled past, mainly due to the various murals dotted around and the Police Land Rovers with their anti-terrorist window mesh that you see driving round the city centre, it was one of the friendliest places I've ever been to. Should think your daughter would probably be a fair bit safer wandering around Belfast than she would be wandering around London these days.
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    Thank you, I was picturing a bomb zone lol
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    Like every city, the world over.  Belfast has places you just do not go to.  It also has some of the nicest (and most costly) suburbs in all of N. Ireland.  It is also set in very impressive country side. 
    What part has he moved to?  You need to ask yourself if you trust his judgement.  
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    don't know which part just yet he is staying with someone there and flat hunting at the same time, not sure if I DO trust his judgement he is a moron! 
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    OK, it wasn't Belfast, although I travelled through it, but I stayed in Cookstown a few years ago and loved it.
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    I went and stayed in Belfast when I was 17 twenty years ago, there were soldiers everywhere but the people were friendly, it is like any city it has no go areas
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    Make no mistake it is still a dangerous place. It pays to know where you are going. If you are based in the city centre then it is a fantastic place & I do advise going on a tourist city bus ride, seriously it is a fascinating place & the bus is a great way to see everywhere safely.

    She just has to beware of straying into the wrong area, if your ex is a moron & not likely to be aware of the situation beware! Having said that if he is staying with a local they will be switched on. It really is a matter of being sensible. The troubles are still there in the religious divide, it's just that the shootings & bombings have in the main diminished. There are still walls & gates seperating the Falls Road & Shanklin Road which are controlled in the evenings & weekends.

    Having said all of that Ireland is a fantastic place to visit with the most friendliest helpful people you could ever wish to meet. The countryside is amazing but again the divide is there to be seen.

    I'm sure she will be as safe there as in any major city in the world. Belfast has been rebuilt & is full of bars & restaurants etc & people looking to have a great time. Her only problem may possibly be if she strayed away from the centre & met the wrong people but as said that could happen anywhere & in all likelihood she would never see any problem 99.999999999999% of the time.

     Bugger I just noticed your daughter is 10, Don't know why assumed she was grown up & may want to go sightseeing etc on her own. She will be absolutely fine, if you would trust her with her dad anywhere else let her go over  ;-)  

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    thank you that really helped :)
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    I've visited a couple of times - yes, it has dreadful corners, but locals know and will know where to avoid, and frankly, it's pretty obvious to all where not to stray.

    But the city centre is great, much on the up, and the people are good too, you don't really get the bullshit you can get in Dublin. Well worth doing the bus tours - and yes, take a minibus around the old troublespots too, it's an education. Like charltonbob says, there's some beautiful countryside there too - hard to take in when all we hear about over here is the bad side, but like I said, it's an education.
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    Went there on a lads weekend a 18 months ago. Stayed in the city centre and had a whale of a time. People very friendly and would have no qualms about going back even with the recent trouble.
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    I know Belfast pretty well SJ as my father is from there, in fact I was there just three weeks ago.  I find it very safe and I doubt your ex will be taking her to pubs etc in areas where she shouldn't be.

    Its a great city and as people mentioned the countryside is beautiful and you're int he countryside within minutes of leaving the City. 
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    I have to echo what has been said so far.  I was there for a weekend with my young family about three years ago, and of all of our travel in the Republic and the North, it's the place that I really wished I had more time.  Admittedly most of our time was spent in the city centre, as well as on one of the bus tours of the outlying areas, but it really is beautiful and the people very friendly.

    I can't speak to the unique risks of the city, but other than the gates etc., didn't see much evidence of anything that would cause me concern.  It was a fairly superficial trip, mind you.

    I'd go back in a heartbeat.  Not often you can see such a vibrant first-world city which, at the time, had little evidence of anything but a nascent tourist trade.

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    Belfast is fine if you wern't born there. Very friendly to strangers in general.
    Very serious though. DO NOT SEND HER OVER IN JULY.


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    Belfast is fine if you wern't born there. Very friendly to strangers in general.
    Very serious though. DO NOT SEND HER OVER IN JULY.


    why?
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    Belfast is fine if you wern't born there. Very friendly to strangers in general.
    Very serious though. DO NOT SEND HER OVER IN JULY.


    why?
     July is marching season (especially 12th July) for the Loyalist/Protestant bands/communities, generally causes unrest and counter demos/marches from Nationalists/Republicans community
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    Belfast is fine if you wern't born there. Very friendly to strangers in general.
    Very serious though. DO NOT SEND HER OVER IN JULY.


    why?

    July is the "marching season" where both nationalist and unionist groups like to organise parades, the main purpose of which seem to be to wind the other side up. Consequently there's usually a flare up or two as sectraian tempers get agitated.
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    Again Thank you, you've all been very helpful, the response has been overwhelming. 
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    Well, going by my own personal experiences I found it to be a war-zone. I couldn't walk down the street without someone throwing a brick or a bottle of unleaded at me. This was over 20 years ago though and the advice i'd give is do not wear camoflage clothing or carry a rifle. Hope this helps. ;-)
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    Well, going by my own personal experiences I found it to be a war-zone. I couldn't walk down the street without someone throwing a brick or a bottle of unleaded at me. This was over 20 years ago though and the advice i'd give is do not wear camoflage clothing or carry a rifle. Hope this helps. ;-)
    lol
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    Not been, but I have met lots of people and have many friends (from both sides of the 'divide'; which in any case is something that most folks pay little attention to btw) and they are some of the friendliest, warmest and most generous folk you could ever wish to meet.  They'll look after her.

    As father Ted would say 'a great bunch of lads'!

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    So to sum things up, your daughter should be fine as long as she doesn't wear army surplus gear, a balaclava, black gloves, a bowler hat and orange sash combo and doesn't walk around with an armalite and a molotov cocktail in either hand.
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    So to sum things up, your daughter should be fine as long as she doesn't wear army surplus gear, a balaclava, black gloves, a bowler hat and orange sash combo and doesn't walk around with an armalite and a molotov cocktail in either hand.
    LOL
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    don't know which part just yet he is staying with someone there and flat hunting at the same time, not sure if I DO trust his judgement he is a moron! 
    so use your judgement, is it the city that's the issue or your ex's mental and emotional situation.?
     me? .. I wouldn.t let my child stay with a moron, be it his/her natural parent or not, in any city anywhere
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    edited July 2011
    Went over for a conference a few years ago. Great pubs, although we decided to have a pint in all of the ones in the guidebook (17 in total) and one of our party - not me - ended up in hospital overnight through alcohol poisoning. Still, if your 10 year old can avoid drinking 17 pints, she should be fine. Vibrant nightlife, decent sights, huge student population keeps it lively, and has a bit of an edge to it, but nis o different to say Manchester or Leeds in all those respects. Certainly less up its own arse than Dublin, although not as much fun as Cork.
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    trouble is .. Belfast is full with mouthy slobbering know alls like Stephen Nolan and my arch hatefigure Colin 'f***face' Murray
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    Went to a wedding in the 80z  loved the place.Was on the Crumlin Road. Doors left unlocked at night, Sunday dinner seemed like the whole road had an open invite, very generous people. You knew where you were by the differant flags flying from the lamp posts.
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    Love the place , like London in many ways, great city
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    The place he has moved to is Lisburn, finally he has given me an address he wants to take her there end of October.
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