St. Anne’s Cathedral is a Church of Ireland treasure full of intriguing works of art, mesmerizing mosaics and historical relics. It was built in the early 1900s to replace an 18th-century church. Attend concerts, recitals or carol services, which make use of the church’s excellent acoustics.
Admire the detailed façade of the church, with its portal and sculpted pediment. Capture photos of the pointed Spire of Hope that rises from the glass ceiling in the cathedral’s roof. The 130-foot (40-meter) illuminated spire is easily visible at night, providing a useful meeting point for friends. In the nave, look up to view the base of the spire from underneath. Notice the strength of the large gray columns and arches.
Take an audio tour of the church for a small fee. Move to the sanctuary to see the stained-glass window portraying the Good Samaritan tale. This is the only part preserved from the original church. Visit the Chapel of the Holy Spirit to admire the spectacular mosaics that portray St. Patrick. Among the highlights are the Martin sisters’ Italian glass mosaics, which contain more than 150,000 pieces.
The cathedral has one of the largest pipe organs in the country, originally dating back to 1907. Inspect the military memorials and the tribute to Irish unionist politician Edward Carson. Meditate at a pew with a view of the altar. Purchase souvenirs from the gift shop.
Stroll through spacious pedestrianized St. Anne’s Square and appreciate the elegance of its buildings. Peruse the boutiques and cafés beneath the colonnade. The Cathedral Quarter is known for its tranquil sites, such as the Belfast Central Library.
Visit the church between morning and late afternoon Mondays through Saturdays or early afternoon on Sundays. Pay a small fee for admission and a souvenir brochure. Attend a service or pray privately without a fee.
St. Anne’s Cathedral lies on its namesake square in the center of the city. It is next to the Metropolitan Arts Centre, Buoy Park and part of the Ulster University Campus. Park your car in the multi-story underground lot beneath the square.