We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.
Belfast Hop on Hop Off Tour
Review Highlights
Great tour

Would highly recommend this tour both informative and highly entertaining indeed. All the guys were... read more

Reviewed 2 days ago
mikew818
,
Paisley, United Kingdom
via mobile
Great Way to See The City

We enjoyed taking this tour around Belfast and got off only the jail. The commentary was useful and... read more

Reviewed 2 days ago
umlaith
,
oman
Read all 603 reviews
  
Recommended experiences in and around Belfast
from $16.01
More Info
from $11.27
More Info
from $38.42
More Info
from $25.61
More Info
Reviews (603)
Filter reviews
603 results
Traveler rating
400
118
50
17
18
Traveler type
Time of year
LanguageAll languages
More languages
Traveler rating
400
118
50
17
18
Show reviews that mention
All reviews live commentary your bearings day ticket ticket lasts titanic museum excellent commentary crumlin jail great overview peace wall city sightseeing top deck cruise ship sense of humour great value for money recent history shankill road city hall
Selected filters
Filter
Updating list...
7 - 12 of 603 reviews
Reviewed 3 weeks ago

This is a tough review to write because I don't want to penalize the employees who went above and beyond to be good hosts, but the company itself needs to improve its operations so as not to unfairly burden their good employees. We first took a complete ride on the entire route with Rachel on the 1st bus in the morning to get an overview of the sight, everything went smoothly. On the second round we did the hop-on/hop off with other guides and that's when things started to unravel...

First the good:
Guides RACHEL and NICKY were EXCELLENT, We'd give them each 5 stars.
RACHEL because of her description of the attractions, her explanation of the historical, cultural, and political context (without being partisan), and her attentiveness to her passengers' questions. We'd love to do another, more in depth, tour with her.
NICKY was also knowledgeable but what set her apart was watching how she handled the breakdown of another bus and how she tried her best to help the broken bus driver/guide and calm down & reassure the passengers from that broken bus that ended up on her bus. We were afraid we would miss our scheduled tour at the Crumlin Rd Gaol because of the time lost in the breakdown, Nicky took the time to help us plan our route so we could make up for the time.

Now for the rest, which is unfortunately not good:
1. We hopped on with 2 other guides but we didn't even bother to find out their names because they acted like they couldn't be bothered to do their jobs. They were snarky to customers who were trying to get settled, their description of the sights were cursory at best as if they were reciting from a skimpy script. One of our buses broke down (more of that later) and the guide didn't bother to address the passengers, just kept talking to the driver and ate his sandwich while passengers were left wondering what to do. If Rachel and Nicky were 5-star, then these 2 guides (a lady in 1 bus and a guy in the broken bus) were 1-star.
2. Unlike London or Amsterdam or other large cities with lots of tourists to support lots of buses, these buses only run every 30 minutes or more. So if you hop off and try to catch the next one you need to plan your time at that attraction just right or you'll have to wait 30-50 minutes for the next bus. This happened to us on the Crumlin Rd. Gaol stop, we waited 50 minutes for a bus to arrive and even began to wonder if we had missed the last bus for the day. In the time we waited two buses from the other HOHO tour company drove by (and stopped), but no sight of our bus. In short: you can't plan on stopping at too many attractions because the timing of the buses means you waste lots of time waiting for the next one.
3. The buses drove by each attraction quickly and it wasn't always clear which side of the bus the attraction was so it was hard to know where to focus and where to take pictures.
4. Our bus broke down (!!!) and the company's poor operations really showed. We had hopped on at the Titanic Museum and were driving to the next stop when we heard the driver say something to the guide about needing water, then when we pulled onto the grounds of parliament the guide jumped out and ran alongside the bus then jumped back and said "I think it'll be OK, it's just water, it was OK yesterday". We got to the top of the hill, the driver stopped the bus and he and the guide went to check on the rear of the bus then came back to tell us that the bus wouldn't be continuing but that we were welcome to walk around and while they figured out what to do. We all alighted and walked around the bus to see pink coolant pouring out the back. Definitely not water!
The driver dug around inside the bus to see if there was any bottled water to use as refill, meanwhile the guide was on the phone, while eating his sandwich, trying to figure out if they could send a replacement bus (nope), how long before the next bus would come (30+ mins), then told us that once the engine cooled down we could continue the journey. Turns out this had happened before. They knew the bus had this problem but the company decided to operate it anyway and didn't carry extra coolant. Oh, and while this was going on, the guide just calmly ate his lunch and ignored all the passengers. We wasted over 30 minutes sitting there waiting for the next bus to come then had to jam into it bc it was full. No apologies, no effort to engage the passengers. I give this guide a 1-rating. When the next bus came along they offered bottled water to the broken-down bus driver to use as coolant. From the conversation between the next bus' driver and guide we gathered that this had happened before and that bus was known to be faulty.

Given the infrequency of the buses, the lack of reliability of their vehicles, and the unimpressive two guides, I would not recommend this company, it was not worth the price we paid (£12.95/person) because you really can't stop and spend time at too many attractions within a day. The two wonderful guides do not make up for the other shortcomings.

And, yes, this review is for the right company - see attached photo of broken down bus and passengers left to wander on their own without information on how to continue their journey....

Date of experience: September 2019
Thank houstonturtle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 4 weeks ago via mobile

Used many of these trips in various Cities and this one was as good as the rest. A good route and we went around 1 and a half times in order to get off at the Crumlin Road gaol. The only negative being that the guide forgot to mention a few stops which upset a number of travellers who had to alight and walk back along the route ;)

Date of experience: September 2019
Thank 40briant
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 4 weeks ago

Good tour around the city with excellent commentary from Brian with a W!!! and Lionel our driver. It is a good way to see what places you want to visit and you can hop off at any of the stops.

Date of experience: September 2019
1  Thank Bev M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 4 weeks ago

Very historical route that highlights the history of the city.. The open top bus allows for great picture opportunities.

Date of experience: October 2018
1  Thank Paul C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 4 weeks ago

The tour itself has pretty basic information and not all of it is up to date, but that's if you can actually hear the tour guide because the speaker on some of the buses are really bad quality. We originally intended to use the buses as an easy way to get to the sights, but if you have a week public transport pass that would be cheaper and more useful since the buses were hard-pressed to stop. They tell you to stomp your feet or press the button I'd you want to stop at one of the stops but they don't stop of you stomp your feet and the buttons on the top don't work, and if you get up to go downstairs or tell the tour guide to stop at the next stop most will tell at you for standing on the bus. So if you really want to just be driven around for an hour and have a mediocre tour than this is perfect. If you want something better though and you don't mind walking, check out the free Belfast walking tours and get a transportation pass.

Date of experience: September 2019
1  Thank Scarletfeather13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
View more reviews