Trip review Cardiff-Belfast City-Leeds Bradford

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So on Monday I finally completed visiting all the capital cities on the British Isles with a little trip to Belfast. I flew from Cardiff with Eastern Airways on their Jetstream J41. Originally my departure time was 10.45 am but Eastern changed that to 07.45 am so that got rid of my lie in and meant an early start. I got to the airport about 6am but had to wait until 06.30 until check in opened.

The airport was really quiet as the Belfast flight was the only departure until the 11.45 Ryanair Faro flight. It was so quiet that Duty Free, Costa coffee and the Beer House were all closed but WH Smith was open so I was able to get a snack there for breakfast.

Boarding was announced on time about 30 minutes before departure and was pretty quick as there was only 8 of us passengers for the whole flight. The flight pushed back on time and after a few minutes of taxiing we took off using runway 12 and before long were heading into the clouds and then cruising at 330 knots at a cruise altitude of 18,000 feet. The flight lasted just over an hour heading north over the mid and north of wales and past the isle of man flying over the Irish Sea. Unfortunately I couldn’t see much except endless cloud below and above. Disappointedly there was no inflight service. I was expecting at the least some sort of snack like a biscuit and a bottle of water but they served nothing which was disappointing especially as I paid £81 for the flight.


After an hour of flying we landed at Belfast City airport and disembarked picking up my hand luggage from the Eastern Airways baggage cart as due to the J41 has no overhead lockers for baggage it all goes into the hold. 10 minutes later and I was outside looking for the bus to Belfast city centre.

As my flight arrived in Belfast just before 9am and my flight to Leeds wasn’t due to depart until 16.10, I caught the express bus into the city centre. After wandering around for a bit I decided to take the sightseeing bus around Belfast. This cost £15.00 but the ticket does last all day and you can hop on and off at various stops. The bus tour lasted an hour and was really interesting going through the city, then the Titanic quarter and through West Belfast which included the Falls road, the Shanklin road and the peace wall with a commentary about the conflict in Northern Ireland.

After that I made my way back to Belfast City Airport to catch my flight to Leeds Bradford with BA Cityflyer. The check in area was very busy but I already had my boarding pass on my phone and as I was hand luggage only I was able to head through security and into departures. Belfast City is a nice modern looking regional airport. After departures you walk through Duty free and then past WH Smith and then into the main departure hall which has a Starbucks and 2 restaurant outlets one of which was closed. The departure hall has good views of the runway and apron so while I was waiting I was able to do some planespotting though there was some obstructions due to an airbridge and stairwell. Most of the flights out of Belfast City are to other parts of the UK with airlines like British Airways, Aer Lingus, Loganair, Eastern Airways and Easyjet they also have flights with KLM and Vueling to Europe.



After relaxing in departures for a while it was time to head down to the gate and board. Boarding was done by steps at the front of the aircraft which was an Embraer E190. Boarding didn’t take long as the flight wasn’t even half full and we pushed back 10 minutes before our departure time and not before long we were in the air and heading to Leeds. The flight itself wasn’t very long about 40 minutes and because of the cloud cover I couldn’t see much as we cruised doing 400 knots at 25,000 feet. I did get inflight service on this flight consisting of a small container of water and a flapjack. Also hand sanitiser gel and wipes were giving out which was a good touch. This was my first time flying with BA Cityflyer and I found them excellent. The legroom was really great and the seats themselves were really comfortable.




After a short 40 minutes flight we landed at Leeds Bradford airport and surprisingly disembarked by their airbridge and it didn’t take long to get through to arrivals where I waited for my lift.

After spending 2 days with sister I headed back to Wales but this time I used the train. 1st leg was Leeds to Birmingham on the Crosscountry Bristol Temple Meads service and then changed onto Crosscountry service to Cardiff Central from Birmingham New Street.



In all I had a very good trip. It was nice to be travelling again and seeing a new city and spending some time with my sister.
 
Excellent account, Jerry, with the pictures adding some colour.

We only went to Belfast for the first time three or four years ago and enjoyed our short stay there. We flew in and out of Dublin as our visit encompassed the North and the South.

The highlight for me and I think for my wife was a visit to the Titanic Museum which is close to BHD. If you visit Belfast again it's highly recommended. Did your hop on-hop off tour bus get as far as Stormont? We thought that the approach and the building extremely impressive.
 
Excellent account, Jerry, with the pictures adding some colour.

We only went to Belfast for the first time three or four years ago and enjoyed our short stay there. We flew in and out of Dublin as our visit encompassed the North and the South.

The highlight for me and I think for my wife was a visit to the Titanic Museum which is close to BHD. If you visit Belfast again it's highly recommended. Did your hop on-hop off tour bus get as far as Stormont? We thought that the approach and the building extremely impressive.
Thanks.
Hopefully i'll look to go back sometime next year and visit the museum also the Giants causeway as well.
No the tour bus didn't go near Stormont, i've seen photos of it and it does look impressive.
 
Excellent account, Jerry, with the pictures adding some colour.

We only went to Belfast for the first time three or four years ago and enjoyed our short stay there. We flew in and out of Dublin as our visit encompassed the North and the South.

The highlight for me and I think for my wife was a visit to the Titanic Museum which is close to BHD. If you visit Belfast again it's highly recommended. Did your hop on-hop off tour bus get as far as Stormont? We thought that the approach and the building extremely impressive.

I've been to the Titanic Museum as well, very interesting.
 
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