There’s never been a better time to take a jaunt to the Emerald Isle. With stunning countryside, beautiful coastline, and achingly cool modern cities, Ireland has something to offer everyone. You might fancy embarking on some of the natural heritage trails to satisfy your thirst for the outdoors, you might want to partake in a pint or two of Guinness in some traditional Irish pubs, or maybe you’d like to meander the shopping streets of the capital city to spend your pocket full of euros. Ireland really is an island of contrasts that has come through a tumultuous history to become a haven for tourists from all over the world. Take a look at these essential delights to sample when you hot-foot it to the Emerald Isle.
Dublin is draped in history yet also has a hipster vibe emerging with its cafe culture, urban bars and gastropubs. The nightlife is exceptional, the people are friendly, and you can’t fail but smile when a local offers you a pint of Guinness. If you’re a culture vulture, you might fancy taking in the National Gallery, Marsh’s Library and Kilmainham Gaol. The walls of these buildings ooze history, and you might even get to experience what it might have been like to have been a prisoner in the nineteenth century confined in a stone cell.
Accommodation throughout the city is varied and plentiful. For those looking for a modern place to rest their weary bones, Dublin’s brand new Hotel7 offers some great dinner, bed and breakfast packages so you don’t have to worry about where you’ll be getting your next meal. Alternatively, you could soak up the backpacker vibe and stay in one of Dublin’s many hostels. Either way, stay central and then you have the capital city to explore on your doorstep.
For those travellers who’d rather a more sedate holiday experience, a region like County Cork could be more suitable. Green patchwork quilt fields adorn the landscape, the population is much smaller, and the outdoors beckons you to explore it on trails and rambling walks. The famous Blarney Stone is at the top of Blarney Castle in Cork. This can be a busy tourist site, so it pays to get up early and venture there before the hordes swarm. A trip to Ballycotton Cliff means you can enjoy the fresh Emerald Isle air while taking in the coastal seascapes and the countryside views. The coastline is rugged, untouched and less touristy than other seaside resorts. There won’t be an amusements hall in sight, and you can enjoy a hike without bumping into tourists at every turn. You might fancy whipping out your binoculars to look for whales and coastal birds if wildlife peaks your interest.
Ireland really is an island of contrasts that has much to offer the family, the thrill seeker, the wildlife lover, the city visitor or the countryside dweller. If you can stay longer and combine a number of hotspots while traversing the Emerald Isle you will enjoy an authentic experience while sampling the delights of Ireland.