Featured photo credit: Giuseppe Milo
It is a nation of breathtaking scenery, medieval castles, rich culture, and of course, Guinness. This magical island known as Ireland has long been charming visitors, with its residents offering their warmest welcome and all too eager to share why they believe their country is one of the finest.
Ireland is a destination suited to nearly every type of traveller; I assure you its treasures will leave a lasting buzz much stronger than any amount of Jameson could ever inflict. Here, old world charm meets modern day luxuries, making an Irish holiday both magical and carefree.
So whether you’re a solo backpacker seeking a true adventure or simply want to enjoy retired life with the love of your life, pack your bags and head to the Emerald Isle for a holiday you won’t soon forget.
7 Types of Travellers Who Visit Ireland – Is This You?
If you love self driving holidays, Ireland is your dream destination. Ireland makes it easy to customise your own itinerary to enjoy the cities and attractions you desire at your own pace. Best of all is car rental is extremely affordable in Ireland.
Driving around Ireland allows an in depth look at this magical country which allows you to experience some of the world’s greatest road trips along with exploring its hidden gems.
Though if want a road trip experience without self driving, there are plenty of coach tours to choose from as well. With 85 years of experience CIE tours have an amazing selection of incredible Irish road trips which cover the best routes in the country.
The Wild Atlantic Way
Ireland boasts the world’s longest coastal driving route at around 2,500km, known as the Wild Atlantic Way. Along the way you’ll pass through mesmerising landscapes which are linked by charming towns.
Explore the rugged and remote Northern Headlands, catch a wave on the Surf Coast, whale watch on the Haven Coast, and feel small hiking the dramatic landscapes of the Cliff Coast.
Between Belfast and Londonderry you’ll find the nearly 200km long Causeway Coastal Route offering an equally stunning itinerary filled with busy cities, relaxed fishing villages, and a wide offering of beaches. The area is also home to over two dozen Game of Thrones filming locations.
Photo credit: Giuseppe Milo
Ireland is perfect for the solo traveller as it offers a safe friendly atmosphere which is both easy to get to and quite economical. Take a ferry from Wales or England or hop on a flight from numerous U.K. airports offering daily flights. International tourists from as far away as Australia can easily get to Ireland with as little as one stopover.
Dublin, Ireland’s capital, offers an energetic youthful feel which is filled with entertainment, wonderful restaurants, and comfortable accommodation. For the backpacker on a budget, you will find that Dublin as well as other Irish cities offer options that are easy on your wallet.
You’ll have no trouble making friends with the locals whether on the street or in a pub. Feel free to ask for help or advice as they will be more than happy to offer their assistance. They can point you in the direction of the area’s best attractions.
When travelling through Dublin you may want to look into a Dublin Pass which will allow you access to a wide array of Dublin attractions as well as discounts throughout the city.
Never has there been a better time to visit Ireland than if you’re a Baby Boomer. With increased or full freedom to spend your days as you wish, along with financial stability, there is no longer any excuse to not be captivated by The Land of Saints and Scholars.
Baby Boomers are healthier and wealthier than ever before and Ireland offers a wide array of fascinating guided tours which include luxurious hotels, included meals, organized activities & attraction visits, and more.
CIE tours specialize in Ireland for Baby Boomers and have some fabulous coach tours. This means Baby Boomers are crossing Ireland off their bucket list with like-minded people via engaging tours which take care of everything. There is no need to think, plan, or worry about composing the perfect itinerary as experts have done all the hard work for you!
Photo credit: Giuseppe Milo
Travellers Re-Tracing Their Roots
Across the globe you’ll find people with Irish ancestry, over 80 million by some estimates. While the U.K. holds the greatest number of Irish migrants, countries such as the U.S. and Australia are also home to well over 100,000 citizens which have Irish roots.
It is no surprise then that many travellers wish to come back to the place their ancestors called home to experience where they came from. In 2013 Ireland led a tourism campaign known as The Gathering which called upon the Irish diaspora to return to Ireland to visit the homeland and take part in events such as family reunions and gatherings.
With so many Irish descendants living abroad, St. Patricks Day has become a worldwide holiday. Experiencing the holiday in Ireland itself, however, is a celebration like no other.
With castles around every corner along with plentiful prehistoric and medieval sites, Ireland will have history lovers salivating.
Visit the Blarney Castle, home of the Blarney Stone, just waiting to be kissed. It is one of Ireland’s most attractive and famous castles. You also have the 15th century Bunratty Castle and the 12th century Malahide Castle.
After you have visited the tens of thousands of castles and castle ruins across the country, you can move onto Céide Fields, one of the largest Neolithic sites in the world. Dating back to 3500 BC, the site contains the oldest known stone walled fields in the world as well as offering an award winning Visitor Centre.
Then you have Newgrange, the prehistoric monument older than the Pyramids and Stonehenge. Come the winter solstice, a chamber is illuminated with light allowing visitors to witness archaic wall carvings.
Even the city of Dublin itself dates back over 1,000 years where it has been the principal cultural centre of the nation.
Home of music legends U2, The Cranberries, and Sinéad O’Connor, Ireland has no shortage of musical talent. Newer artists such as Hozier and The Script are continuing to bring Irish music talent to the world stage.
Enjoy traditional Irish folk music or modern day rock-pop via Ireland’s numerous pubs or music events held throughout the year like Electric Picnic. Dublin hosts all sorts of venues in which you can feel the spirit of Irish sounds.
You also have the theatrical show Riverdance which showcases Irish music and dance, which has become one of the world’s most prominent dance productions.
No trip to Ireland would be complete without trying some world renowned Irish alcohol. Although Guinness beer, Jameson whiskey, and Baileys Irish Cream can be found throughout the world, nowhere does it taste better than in the place of its birth. Even Barack Obama had to admit his taste of Guinness in Ireland was a magical experience.
Where to Head
Head to the Guinness Storehouse, Ireland’s most popular tourist attraction, where you can learn all there is to know about the iconic Irish black beer and down a pint in their world-famous rooftop Gravity Bar. This also ranks as one of the best museums in Dublin.
Located in the heart of the legendary St. James’s Gate Brewery, this is the home of Guinness; the production site which has been operating since 1759 (Arthur Guinness signed a lease for 9,000 years). Once the fermentation plant of the brewery, it is now a seven-storey visitor experience dedicated to the brewing process, history of Guinness in the media, and how to pour the perfect pint.
Move on to trying some Blackwater Gin or a Whiskey & Cranberry with Jameson of course and then have a go at an Irish coffee with dessert.
Experience Ireland’s famous pub culture where you will walk away with incredible stories from friendly locals along with being entertained by wonderful live music, delicious cuisine, and of course unbelievably fine beer and spirits.
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