Belfast ferry port is the largest in Northern Ireland and transports more than 1.5 million passengers every year. The port connects Northern Ireland with the Isle of Man, England and Scotland via Douglas, Liverpool Birkenhead and Cairnryan respectively. The sailing durations vary from just over 2 hours to Cairnryan to around 8 hours to Liverpool. There is a selection of up to 53 crossing every week depending on the time of year.
Belfast Harbour can be traced all the way back to 1613 when under James I, the town was incorporated as a borough by royal charter, with provision for the establishment of a wharf or quay. The port began to grow over the centuries and became increasingly important to the trade of Northern Ireland. The harbour remained open throughout two World Wars and of course, was the construction site of perhaps the most famous ship to ever sail: RMS Titanic. The ferry port itself has a much shorter history, dating back to the 1990s.
The Belfast to Douglas route is operated by Steam Packet, whilst the Belfast to Liverpool Birkenhead and Cairnryan are both operated by Stena Line. Stena Line ferries use the Victoria Terminal 2 and 4, while Steam Packet arrives at the Albert Quay.
If you are travelling by car, there are two different addresses to follow, depending on if you are heading to a Steam Packet dock or a Stena Line one.
Isle of Man bound sailings operate from Albert Quay. Follow the yellow AA signs (IOM FERRY). Passengers from the North West should follow the sign DOCKS (S) on the M2.
Stena Line sailings operate from Victoria Terminal in West Bank Road located off the M2 motorway (Fortwilliam roundabout). This will be clearly signposted from the motorway and other routes. There is both short and long term car parking available.
It is a little more difficult to reach here via public transport. The majority of trains call at Great Victoria Street Station in the centre of Belfast, with the exception of trains from Dublin and Larne which terminate at Belfast Central Station. The only realistic bus options are those that are the shuttle services that are sometimes provided by the ferry operators themselves.
Isle of Man Steam Packet Company Terminal,Albert Quay,Belfast,BT3 9HY,Northern Ireland
Stena Lines Belfast-Liverpool,Victoria Terminal 2,West Bank Road,Belfast,BT3 9JN,Northern Ireland
Stena Lines Belfast-Cairnryan,Victoria Terminal 4,West Bank Road,Belfast,BT3 9JL,Northern Ireland
Albert Quay (Steam Packet) +44 1624 661661
Terminal 2 & 4 (Stena Line) 0347 770 7070
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