The sunshine this week has got me in the mood to go topless….in my car! and hit the great outdoors. For a country that is notorious for its bad weather, there are a lot of places to eat alfresco. Here are a few of my favourites….
The Salty Dog, Bangor: You can’t beat Bangor in the sunshine. The boats docked in the marina makes it seem more like St Tropez than the gold coast of North Down! The Salty Dog is not too far from the sea front or the train station if you fancy trying its range of local craft beers and gins. Lucky customers get to enjoy its two outdoor areas – the Kitchen Garden and the Restaurant Terrace and The Salty Dog is pooch friendly so your four-legged friends can enjoy the sunshine too!
Saltwater Brig, Kircubben: This hidden gem is the perfect location for a Sunday drive. If it’s too warm in ‘the snug’ and you fancy alfresco dining, then The Brig has extensive gardens at the rear with stunning views of Strangford Lough. The menu is vast and in the summer be sure to blow the diet and try its stonewall barbeque.
Cutters Wharf, Belfast: Probably one of the most well known spots in the city to kick back and have a beer in the sunshine. A favourite with the sporty crowd due to the close proximately to the boat and tennis clubs, you need to get here early if you want to get a seat, especially at the annual boat race (this year its on June 11th). It can be pretty glam so get your bling and lippy on!
The Dirty Duck, Holywood: In my opinion, there is no better tasting fish than when you eat it near the sea – so maybe that’s why the crab claws taste so good at this busy hot spot.
Increasingly popular with the after work Holywood set, it is best to get up to speed on your Rory McIlroy golf trivia if you want to fit in!
Harry’s Shack, Portstewart: There is something special about enjoying the sunshine at a beach-side restaurant and this hits the spot to a tee. When the sun is out this place is buzzing with tourists and locals alike so have a look at the long forecast and get a table booked well in advance so you won’t be disappointed. Tables both inside and out mean you can get every angle of the Portstewart Strand beach and remember if you want a sunset tipple it’s not licensed so bring your own.
I know this list is short, but I’d love to hear the places you’re heading if the good weather stays. Oh and I can also be found in the sun trap that is my mum’s back garden. Not sure if there will be enough room for all you G Spotters! but the first one through the door with a bottle of prosecco gets a sun lounger!
(Harry’s Shack photo credit @Martina Gardiner Photography)
Spotting local hidden gems from the world of beauty, health, fashion, tourism and hospitality. I have my ear to the ground (quite literally) to keep you up to date about the new or interesting products and services from our neck of the woods. If you know one – get in touch on twitter @grainnemcgarvey or at www.pulseprni.com