With so many spectacular places to visit in Ireland where do you start? Here’s a selection of the top 10 destinations in Ireland for you to discover this magical country.
1.The Ring of Kerry – paradise discovered
Driving around the Ring of Kerry will leave you with some unforgettable memories. A good town to start is Kenmare, then on to Moll’s Gap, Derrynane Bay, Skellig Ring, Portmagee and Killorglin. The journey takes a day, or you can stop overnight along the way. The kids will love this road trip as there’s so much to explore and do – beaches, castles, nature trails, horse riding, water sports and even a chocolate factory!
2.The magical ambiance of the Cliffs of Moher
To immerse yourself in the past and delve into Ireland’s legends take a trip to the Cliffs of Moher. This breathtaking location is an hour’s drive from Limerick. Lost in the history of witches and Celtic myths, you feel you’ve stepped back in time. Perched high on the clifftop O’Brien’s Tower is an incredible viewpoint, where you may be lucky enough to spot dolphins in the ocean below. A truly romantic setting, the perfect time to visit with your partner is sunset.
For a weekend away with friends, Dublin is unmissable. This lively city is a mix of Irish culture, international influence, shopping, lively bars and restaurants. You can dine in exclusive restaurants or cosy bars – the choice of cuisine is amazing. And if you like a tipple don´t forget to visit the Guinness Storehouse and the Jameson Distillery, home of Ireland’s famous whiskey.
4.County Wicklow’s amazing scenery
If you’re looking for a place to take the kids then Wicklow County, 30 miles south of Dublin, has plenty to entertain. You can explore this vast national park that offers stunning walks through mountains, ancient ruins to explore, cycling and mountain biking, surfing and kayaking, horse riding, archery, fishing, birdwatching, outdoor activity centers… that’s just for starters. And what about a relaxing spa afternoon for mum in this ‘Garden of Ireland’?
5.Rock of Cashel – St Patrick’s Rock
For a taste of Ireland’s heritage why not visit the Rock of Cashel? An hour’s drive from Limerick, this awe-inspiring group of medieval monuments is bathed in history. Dating back to the 4th century the imposing fortress offers a great insight into the history of Ireland for all the family and is a great place to visit on a rainy day when you’re looking for something to entertain the kids.
6.Blarney Castle and Stone
No visit to Ireland is complete without a visit to Blarney Castle and the Blarney Stone. If you’re a horticulture fan you can while away hours wandering around the diverse grounds that include a poison garden, a jungle and a fern garden. And before you leave don´t forget to kiss the Blarney Stone. This timeless attraction promises to bestow eloquence on anyone that rests their lips on it.
7.The enchanting Dingle Peninsula
This wild and natural stretch of coastline forms part of the Wild Atlantic Way. If you’re after rugged scenery and amazing views take the winding drive along this west-coast peninsula, finishing off with a well-earned stop in a traditional Irish pub in the town of Dingle.
8.Get away from it all on the Aran Islands
For a real Irish experience, the Aran Islands are a must. Take the ferry from Doolin or Rossaveal and spend the day listening to the gentle Irish lilt, hire a bike, or simply wander through the untouched natural environment of the countryside and beaches. Each island has its own character, with Inis Mór being the largest.
9.The magic of Bunratty Castle
For a family visit to an authentic Irish attraction, you can visit Bunratty Castle and Folk Park, 20 minutes from Limerick. The kids will be fascinated by the 19th-century village street, the fairy village, the animal farm and the Viking playground. And when it’s time for a little tranquillity why not take a stroll through the peaceful walled garden of the castle?
10.Killarney National Park
If you’re a nature lover, you have to visit the Killarney National Park for its idyllic scenery. Flanked by Ireland’s highest mountain range that stands over lakes, valleys and open expanses of countryside, the park offers walking trails, a wide variety of flora and fauna and stunning glacial features.
With so many attractions, Ireland offers something for everyone, even if the Emerald Isle is your homeland.