Situated near Queens University Belfast, the Botanic Gardens is an important part of Belfast's Victorian heritage and a popular meeting place for residents, students and tourists. Botanic Gardens is located in the south of the city, between Queen's University and the River Lagan.



Event Information

The Mela is a ticketed event with tickets available on the door subject to capacity. Tickets can also be booked in advance. Please check our tickets section for more information.

  • Disabled attendees with a care assistant will receive a 2 for 1 entry. 

  • Entrance to the event is via the Botanic (beside Queens Library) or Stranmillis (beside Queens University) gates only. All other gates will be closed or available for egress only. 

  • Botanic Gardens will be occupied from Tuesday 20th August to Tuesday 27th August and closed to the public on Sunday 25th August. We expect to arrive on site at 7:00am each day; however, we will not begin manual working until between the hours of 9:00am – 9:30am.

  • During our time in Botanic Gardens we will work conspicuously to minimise any disruption caused to the local residents in the surrounding areas without comprising health and safety of the general public. Areas of the park may be restricted during the build and de-rig of the event. 

  • There is no designated parking for this event. Visitors are encouraged to attend using public transport with our partners Translink. Disabled parking is available in the Queens Library Carpark on College Park East on a first come, first served basis.

  • The festival site has been designed to be as wheelchair accessible as possible, however patrons are advised large areas of the event take place on grass. Due to the scale of this event there are currently no provisions for a disabled viewing platform. 

  • Any noise complaints which occur before,during or after the event will be dealt with directly by the Event Manager in liaison with Belfast City Council, who will try to resolve the complaint. If you are not satisfied you can contact Belfast City Council’s Noise Hotline on 02890373006, who will deal with the complaint.

Conditions of Entry

  • Strictly no alcohol will be permitted on site. If you are found with alcohol you will be removed from the festival site.

  • No glassware, tins, open barbeques or naked flames.

  • Food facilities are provided across the festival site.

  • Dogs are permitted, however, MUST be kept on a lead. If your is dog is not on a lead you will be asked to put one on or leave the festival site. 

  • Children under 16 must be accompanied by a responsible adult. 

  • Event will happen come rain or shine, please dress appropriately.

  • The event will open to the public at 12.00pm and finish at 6.00pm. Queues are expected so arrive early to avoid disappointment

  • We reserve the right to refuse admission the festival. 

  • Flags, emblems, paraphernalia of a paristan nature will not be permitted onsite.

  • No outdoor sports is allowed on site, for example football or frisbees.

  • We will not be responsible for any property losses sustained at this event. Any lost property found will be retained for 30 days. Please contact 028 90231381 if you have lost something. 

  • Keep an eye out for your friends, family and children at the festival, and arrange a meeting point

  • Deposit your rubbish in the general waste and recycling bins provided.

  • It is illegal to trade, busk or distribute flyers throughout the site without a permit.

  • Be mindful of local residents when attending the festival and be quiet when leaving the area. 

  • By attending the festival you consent to be filmed or photographed in large groups, and for this to be used by ArtsEkta and Ekta Events CIC for promotional purposes without prior consent. Where a specific photograph is requested you will be asked for consent to take and use the photo.


festival team

Executive Director: Nisha Tandon

Project Manager: Krishan Tandon

Finance & Administration Officer: Deirdre McShane

Outreach & Engagement Officer: Aoife Nic an tSaoir 

Project Assistants: Nabeela Yasin-Iannelli & Amy McFarlane

Production Manager: Becky Turnock

Production Assistant: Pritam Sridhar 

Social Media: Heather McGarrigle 

Public Relations & Communications: Influence Communications 

Graphic & Web Design: Sonia McCourt Design 

Motion Design: Laura Coulter 

Videography: Redcap Productions


Board of Directors

Hazel Francey (Chair), Pamela Ballantine (Vice Chair), Stephen McGarry (Chair, Audit & Risk Commitee), Mukesh Sharma MBE DL, Jeremy Adams, Anna Lo MBE, Jerome Mullan, Dr. M Satish Kumar, Stephen Brennan.



Volunteers are vital to the successful running of the Mela and play an important role within the team structure. In 2018 over 40 volunteers performed a wide variety of tasks ranging from, artist liaison, production and technical assistants, volunteer supervisors, performance supervisors, hospitality assistants and much more. In addition to learning how a festival operates, all volunteers will receive a specialised health and safety training session prior to the festival.

If this sounds like something you would like to get involved with please contact Nabeela on 028 9023 1381 or send her an email.


ArtsEkta believe that investment in the arts can help businesses creatively meet their business objectives. The Belfast Mela can help you reach vast and diverse audiences, gain significant media value, include hard to reach markets and can assist in achieving CSR objectives in a variety of different contexts.

If you want to enquire about sponsorship opportunities for the Belfast Mela 2019 please contact Krishan Tandon on 028 9023 1381 or send him an email.


ArtsEkta is committed to supporting local artistic talent and has a fully developed showcase area at the Mela offering a platform for the promotion of music, dance, visual arts and drama. There are plenty of opportunities to get involved with the Mela in an artistic capacity.

If you are interested in taking part in the 2019 Mela please contact Krishan Tandon on 028 9023 1381 or send him an email.

Traders & Exhibitors 

ArtsEkta welcome a large variety of businesses and exhibitors to participate in the Mela. The Mela is a great platform to promote your products or service to a large and diverse audience.

The deadline for applications is 31st May 2019. Please contact Nabeela on 028 9023 1381 or send her an email for an application form.