Political Tour-Conflicting Stories

Political Tour-Conflicting Stories

Political Tour-Conflicting Stories
5
City Tours • Cultural Tours • Walking Tours
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About
Discover a side of Belfast you won't find in the Tourist books, We invite you to walk the streets of the city on both sides of the Peace Line with the men and women who have served time in prisons for standing up for their beliefs. Ex-political prisoners from the Republican Falls Road and Loyalists or ex British soldiers from the Shankill Road, all ex-combatants who grew up the the area will share their own personal stories on this 3 hour tour
Belfast, Northern Ireland

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Private and Luxury
3 hours
Free cancellation
Not sure? You can cancel this booking up to 24 hours in advance for a full refund.
Recommended by 91% of travellers
This number is based on the percentage of all Tripadvisor reviews for this product that have a bubble rating of 4 or higher
from
€26.45
per adult
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5.0
414 reviews
Excellent
365
Very good
32
Average
10
Poor
2
Terrible
5

Fiona
Roscommon, Ireland1 contribution
Jan 2023 • Couples
R.....was very knowledgeable and easy to listen to. He was very friendly. His part of the tour was relatively factual and gave a broad overview of the history leading up to the "Troubles" He explained from the origins of the plantations, how the violence kicked off . There was positivity in his outlook about the future for Belfast. M...was quite pesimistic unfortunately and focused on the division. He didntget into how the troubles actually began or acknowledge any wrong doing on the protestant side or on the part of the police. He did convey the deep hurts caused by both sides in a very human way and was open in sharing his personal experiences. It was extremely interesting to hear both sides of the cobflict and id highly recommend this tour to anyone visiting Belfast who wants a real personal insight into the sectarian conflict. Thank you to both guides.
Written 30 January 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Jaimie
2 contributions
One of the best tours I’ve ever been on. Hearing from both a republican and a unionist with differing perspectives was truly fascinating. This is the tour to do if you want to understand perspectives from both sides of the conflict. Couldn’t recommend more!
Written 15 January 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Explorer42545694918
Thanks for the great review, we are delighted to hear you had a wonderful experience
Written 16 January 2023
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Felipe N
3 contributions
Dec 2022 • Family
One of the most interesting tour i’ve ever been! Anyone visiting Belfast this is a must go tour. Great guides!!
Written 2 January 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Explorer42545694918
Thanks for taking the time to review Belfast Political Tour Conflicting Stories. Hope to see you again in the future
Written 16 January 2023
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Claire H
Exeter, UK27 contributions
Dec 2022 • Couples
A really interesting tour learning about the history of the troubles and where everything is at now, from those who have experienced the conflict first hand. It was quite harrowing hearing some of the stories, however necessary to get a better understanding of the conflict. It was VERY cold the day we did this, as a result of which some in the group peeled off before the end. So recommend wrapping up well to stay till the end - in our case it over ran by half an hour due to talking to the second guide.
This has to be THE tour to do to get a full understanding of the Northern Ireland divide.
Written 31 December 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Pamela W
Helsinki, Finland6 contributions
Dec 2022 • Family
Fascinating experience. Padraig (ex IRA/ Sinn Fein) took us around the Falls Rd and shared his personal experiences as well as that of others. Then Mark, ex British army, showed some sites in Shankhill Rd. Personally I didn't enjoy the very combative and bitter style of Mark. There is no doubt that the IRA did many bad things... But all sides did... I came away feeling that it is time for reconciliation and moving forward. Very eye opening and worthwhile tour.
Written 30 December 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

MRJ1963
Forest Row, UK20 contributions
Nov 2022
Really useful insight into the troubles. I finally, after all these years, think I've got a grasp of how they originated and why there is still continued conflict. Well worth the visit.
Written 1 December 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

CLLJJR
Keene, NH226 contributions
Nov 2022
Both guides presented a moving account of how the conflict has affected them personally and their community for decades. Seeing the places where events happened and that there is still a 30' wall and daily closures of the streets between the two communities was eye-opening. Raises a lot of questions about the community conflict we have in the US and how we can overcome it.
Written 23 November 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Carole611
New Jersey164 contributions
Nov 2022
One of the absolute best tours I've ever taken. It's not often that you can take a tour with guides who were actually a part of a significant period of history. It's a tour that should be on everyone's bucket list. Our guides were phenomenal and gave us an in-depth understanding of the Troubles from both sides. Jerry, our guide for the Catholic portion, shared his expansive knowledge of Northern Irish history & the Troubles through his own experiences, including a 6 year stint in prison. He's a passionate speaker who believes peace in the area can be achieved. Jerry brought us to one of the gates where Mark, our guide for the Protestant portion, was waiting for us. For the next 90 minutes, Mark spoke about the toll the Troubles have taken on his community and his own family. He talked about how the past continues to press down on the present. He lays out the unique position Northern Ireland finds itself in the world - not all of it pointing to a rosy future. Put on your walking shoes and TAKE THIS TOUR!
Written 15 November 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Neil C
Cambridge, UK43 contributions
Nov 2022
The history and legacy of the war in the six counties (I don't like the euphemistic Troubles, if plays down the enormous loss of life and suffering) is such that it would be more or less impossible for one person to tell the story in a way that did justice to all. The organisers of this walk get round this by giving you, effectively, two tours - one, along the Catholic Falls Road, led by a Republican, and a second, along the Protestant Shankhill Road, led by a unionist. Consequently, you get two very different, indeed totally opposing, perspectives. On the one hand, it is depressing to see the - possibly irreconcilable - divisions that still exist and the. On the other hand, it is a stark illustration of those differences that have shaped this country's history.

Each half last around 90 minutes and gives you the background to the war, key events that happened in the area, and an at times graphic account of conditions both in West Belfast and for those jailed for their parts in events. It also positions the conflict firmly as a social, political and cultural conflict rather than a religious war - something which surprised two American visitors on the tour.

You also get to see many of the murals and memorials that commemorate people and events. On the day we went (Monday 7th November), I felt the Republican guide provided a little more context than his Loyalist counterpart, who focused more on (slightly repetitive) stories of IRA killings rather than the wider political conflict and repeatedly told us he had no answers to the problems. From the Republican point of view, the near-apartheid of 1960s Northern Ireland could have been emphasised even more - the first guide gave us a flavour of this, but if anything held back on the full extent of how bad things were, perhaps because of time.

I must admit, my own family is Irish and I am what you might call a student of the war, so I heard little that I did not already know, apart from (embarrassingly) the fact that part of the community in West Belfast is still locked in behind huge steel gates every night. That said, it was an education to hear the stories from people who had lived them and to see the deep divisions laid so bare.

It's important, though, to remember context. The two guides were both talking from their lived experiences in West Belfast. The city as a whole and indeed the six counties have made enormous strides since the GFA and for people under 30 the war is ancient history, something they have no experience of. For them, the past and its divisions are irrelevant, and they simply want to have normal lives like anyone else. However, the political uncertainties here, especially since Brexit and with shifting demographics, do mean, though, that peace cannot be taken for granted. The tour is a stark illustration that divisions still exist in society and could yet resurface.

Although the tour, and especially the second half, was at times depressing, there still remains hope. At the halfway stage the two guides met for the handover, and during some banter about a united Ireland shared a genuine, hearty laugh. I wish I had taken a photo of the moment, as it showed that even with the deepest divisions and a legacy of death and maiming, people can still find some common ground and get on with each other. There is indeed hope.
Written 15 November 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Alexandra L
8 contributions
Aug 2022
Wow. I would give this 6/5 if I could. I was gripped throughout and on the way home after my head was flooding with thoughts, information and questions.

The Falls/Shankill Rd area is more interesting in terms of history than they are in terms of sightseeing. Therefore, it's vital to visit them with a guide- and this tour gives you TWO, who know the area and the events which took place there. It's thorough and challenging. Three hours sounds a long time, but my tour whizzed by. I could have spent another three hours talking to our excellent guides, Eugene and Jim. They were involved in the IRA and UVF respectively during The Troubles. Meeting them provided a riveting glimpse into their experiences and motives during that time. Eugene and Jim were incredibly open to questions and discussion. This tour is called "Conflicting Stories" so you may not leave with clear answers. But you will leave with much more information and understanding about the events which took place in West Belfast.

There are many tours on offer of this troubled, fascinating part of the world. THIS is the one to choose.
Written 14 November 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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Political Tour-Conflicting Stories | Belfast | UPDATED February 2023 Top Tips Before You Go (with Photos) - Tripadvisor