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Best way to get from Belfast to Derry?

by BillNJ Online Now Sep 2, 2009 at 3:53 PM

Hi,
In November, I will be taking a train from Dublin to Belfast on my way to Derry. What is the best means of transport from Belfast to Derry? Train or Bus?

If bus is the preferred means, how far is the main bus station in Belfast from the main train station (where the trains from Dublin go)?

Is it best to make advance reservations for trips from Belfast to Derry? Or is it better to wait until the day of travel to purchase a ticket?

Thanks,

Bill

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8 Answers
  • clivedinburgh's Profile Photo

    Re: Best way to get from Belfast to Derry?

    by clivedinburgh Online Now Sep 2, 2009 at 7:40 PM

    The train station is about a 10 minute walk from the bus station which is beside the Europa hotel. Given that it'll be November, I'd plan on getting a taxi which should not be more the £5. Never needed to use public transport whilst I worked over there but I know the local tains don't have the best reputation and you'll probably find that the bus service is run by a major firm like Stagecoach. Hope that helps. Clive

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  • leics's Profile Photo

    Re: Best way to get from Belfast to Derry?

    by leics Online Now Sep 2, 2009 at 11:08 PM

    Train is fastest, bus is cheaper.

    www.irishrail.ie will give you train times and fares. One-way far web price is 18 euro. I would normally automatically advise you to take the train, but should warn you that there are problems on the route resulting from bridge repairs at Malahide which will probably be ongoing when you visit (a slightly longer journey, with a change and section by bus). With this delay, journey time is around 2h 45m. There may be special web offers on some departures.

    www.buseireann.ie will give you bus times and details. Click on the 'journeyplanner' button under the red box. Buses leave hourly from Dublin bus station, taking from 2.5 hours (depending on departure time). One-way fare on the Goldline buses is around 13.05GBP (fares given in GBP as it is a N Ireland company):

    translink.co.uk/20040806Gold...

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  • wise23girl's Profile Photo

    Re: Best way to get from Belfast to Derry?

    by wise23girl Online Now Sep 3, 2009 at 4:42 AM

    You are asking about Belfast to Derry so by whatever means you go to Belfast at least take the train to Derry. This journey has been written up as one of THE train journeys. I think the Queen of England is said to love the scenery(in her special train carriage no doubt)
    But you look toward the hills of Donegal as you come closer to Derry.

    We spent "hours" on phone calls trying to locate this journey(we had read about it) only to find it was the regular route. Marg

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  • leics's Profile Photo

    Re: Best way to get from Belfast to Derry?

    by leics Online Now Sep 3, 2009 at 9:44 AM

    I do apologise for misreading your question. I read it early in the morning.
    :-(

    Train times and fare information here:

    http://www.translink.co.uk/nir.asp

    Takes 2h 20m. Single fare 10GBP. It seems there is no difference between pre-booked fare and walk-up fare.

    Bus times here:

    translink.co.uk/atulsterbus....

    Fares examples here:

    translink.co.uk/goldlinefare...


    Bus 212 takes about 1h 50m, single 10GBP.

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  • wise23girl's Profile Photo

    Re: Best way to get from Belfast to Derry?

    by wise23girl Online Now Sep 3, 2009 at 2:37 PM

    Oh and do not get mixed up as I first did with Derry and Londonderry. The Irish call it Derry and the Northern Irish /English call it Londonderry. I do not know what has happened since it is all so much more peaceful.

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  • BillNJ's Profile Photo

    Re: Best way to get from Belfast to Derry?

    by BillNJ Online Now Sep 3, 2009 at 8:11 PM

    Thanks everyone for the helpful information! I look forward to traveling through Northern Ireland.

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  • leics's Profile Photo

    Re: Best way to get from Belfast to Derry?

    by leics Online Now Sep 3, 2009 at 10:54 PM

    Derry appears as L/Derry on timetables etc.

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  • alan1972's Profile Photo

    Re: Best way to get from Belfast to Derry?

    by alan1972 Online Now Sep 4, 2009 at 4:44 AM

    Just to emphasise something leics said earlier (and recognising that your question isn't really about the Dublin to Belfast leg). It is currently impossible to travel by train all the way from Dublin to Belfast and this is likely to still be the case in November. A viaduct on this line collapsed recently and they are talking about taking 3 months to repair it. You can still buy a train ticket from Dublin to Belfast, but if you do that you will travel on a replacement bus service between Connolly Station and Drogheda before transferring to the train. Keep an eye on the Irish Rail website for updates, and remember that you also have the option of taking one of the frequent buses run by Bus Eireann.

    As far as advance reservations from Belfast to Derry is concerned, as far as I know reservations don't exist on railways within Northern Ireland, so there is no advantage to buying a ticket in advance.

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