Bangor is to Belfast what Brighton is to London – a Victorian seaside resort that has enjoyed a renaissance as an out-of-town base for city commuters. The Belfast– Bangor train line was built in the late 19th century to connect the capital with the then flourishing resort. The opening of a huge marina and the ongoing redevelopment of the seafront have boosted Bangor's fortunes – it's widely regarded as the most desirable address in Northern Ireland – though the kitsch tradition of British seaside towns survives in the Pickie Family Fun Park.
The bus and train stations are together on Abbey St, at the uphill end of Main St. At the bottom of Main St is the marina, with B&Bs clustered to the east and west on Queen's Pde and Seacliff Rd. Bangor has both a Main St and a High St, which converge on Bridge St at the marina.