Ireland Travel Guide
🗝️ Key Facts
💶Currency: Euro €
🕙Time Zone: 0 GMT
📞Phone Code: +353
🌐Language: English and Gaeilge
✈️Best time to visit: May to October
🍴Eat: Irish Stew
🥤Drink: Guinness (Dark beer)
🗺️Don't miss: A tour of the Guinness Brewery.
🗺 Menu of Contents:
Ireland is the home to the land of shamrocks and St Patrick's Day. Though it's a relatively small country, Ireland's countryside includes an impressive range of landscapes: towering mountains, magical woodlands, rolling pastures, and rocky coastlines. Sleepy villages dot the countryside while cosmopolitan cities dominate the cultural landscape.
A holiday in Ireland is full of pleasures and surprises, Ireland's culture has permeated the global consciousness, particularly through literature and music. Irish music and dance has circled the globe with breakout acts like Riverdance and U2.
Those enjoying nature and outdoor activities, won’t be disappointed, were enthusiasts can hike scenic routes like the Ring of Kerry and explore the beauty of Killarney National Park; history buffs will marvel at ancient buildings like St Patrick's Cathedral and Blarney Castle; avid readers won't want to miss the James Joyce Museum and Trinity College Dublin.
Not to forget how Irish love their beer, in particular, Guinness beer, known for its dark colour and rich taste, there are hundreds of places where to try it! Those simply looking for a good time can find it in Dublin's lively Temple Bar District, or in almost any pub in this lively and sociable society!
As being an island, travelling by air is the simplest option. Aer Lingus is the host airline, and flies to most European destinations and some popular Mediterranean resorts.
As well you can reach Dublin, it's capital, directly from the USA or UAE. Other European airlines fly there as well as many low cost airlines, of which Ryanair is one of it's biggest based airlines. It's also possible to fly to other cities in Ireland like Shannon or Cork with direct flights with Aer Lingus or Ryanair.
Many travellers, opt to travel by sea, from the UK, specially if you taking a car. Irishferries provides frequent trips across the channel in comfortable ferries.
Transportation within Ireland is easy with modern busses and trains offering visitors easy access to other cities and smaller towns.
Whichever time of the year you go, be prepared for a little rain, as the country is very green and this means rain is very common, specially in the colder months. Summer's are popular in Dublin though temperatures will be about 20-25 °C so it's not an extreme summer. Winter's a less crowded in the cities and temperatures can go down to just about 10 °C. In the countryside this can go even below 0 °C. Throughout the rest of the year it's close to 15C with frequent winds, specially if you are visiting coastal cities.
The best time to visit Ireland, is from May to October, trying to avoid the peak of the Summer July and August for number of visitors and more expensive accommodation.
Irish produce is increasingly well regarded, with special ettention given to its local meat, poultry and seafood products. Thanks to it's immense farm lands, fertile grounds and abundant precipitation there is a lot of organic farm grown products, being sold in markets along the city which are worth a visit as well. T coastal waters and inland lakes and rivers offer lots of fresh fish, including salmon, trout, lobster, mussels, periwinkles and oysters.
Specialities in Ireland include: Dublin Bay prawns: Otherwise known as "langoustines". Oysters, usually served with soda bread, and accompanied by Guinness.Irish stew, now mostly made with lamb or juicy beef, and usually served with potatoes, stock, onions, carrots and garlic. Crubeens, pigs' trotters, typically battered. Colcannon, a mixture of mashed potatoes and cabbage cooked together. Wild salmon, look out for it on menus from April to June. White pudding, similar to black pudding, and a common component of full Irish breakfasts. Dublin coddle, a leftover dish, commonly with sausage, bacon, potato and onion.
As for drinks, Guinness: The famous dark beer is present all over the the country. Irish coffee: Strong black coffee, brown sugar and whiskey with cream.
Whiskey: Popular brands include Jameson, John Powers Gold Label, Hewitts, Midleton, Old Bushmills, Paddy, Reserve and Tullamore Dew.
Ireland is a perfect getaway for a long weekend away from other busy European cities. It's friendly locals, abundant restaurants, pubs and bars guarantee that your trip will be good fun whatever you decide to do! But not only it's popular for it's drinking habits! Ireland has some incredible green scenery which stretches for miles. It's one of the most beautiful landscapes to travel along, transmitting a sense of peace and tranquillity.
Dublin Tourism Information Guide
Dublin is the capital of Ireland and it's famous for its pub culture worldwide, specially it's lively atmosphere at night. Many pubs or bars offer evening entertainment, singing competitions, Karaoke, Gigs, concerts or art exhibitions which go on into the late night. However it's not all about partying Dublin is a very historic city,but becoming a modern metropolis with an increase in foreigners making it their home. It has many cultural events around the year and it's a popular city for fresh produce markets and shopping.
In the summer, from early May until late August, the city of Dublin can get very warm, and therefore light cotton clothing is sensible. There is less rain during the summer months, but Ireland has a very wet climate with changeable weather. It is not unusual for a sunny day to quickly cloud over and turn into a rainy day. Temperatures during the Summer can reach easily to 20°C on most days and occasionally reach up to 25° on hot days in July.
Winters in Dublin can be both long and damp, so be sure to bring a thick overcoat or jacket, gloves and scarf. Snow is infrequent, but there are often cold, clear, frosty days.
If you are planning to visit outdoor locations in Dublin, water-resistant shoes are always recommended as the city's pavements can often become extremely wet after heavy rain, and an umbrella is a must. Temperatures during the Winter can reach to just 3°C but don't go below freezing that often except from January. On most days the temperatures stay around 5-12°C.
The best time to visit Dublin, ranges from April to October, taking away July and August is you want to avoid the high season.
After arriving at the airport head to the outside bus platforms where there are several companies taking you directly into the city centre. For €6 single trip you can take the Airlink which is the most frequent and popular bus to travel to the city within 30-40 min.
Within the city the public transportation system is run with Trams and Busses. For more info check the following links: Trams and Busses
Although at a first glance not many visitors come to Dublin for it's history, the city hosts many landmarks of interest, museums and great parks to walk around the city.
The main places include:
- Dublin Castle, dating to the 13th century.
- St Patrick’s Cathedral, founded in 1191.
- Kilmainham Gaol, a former prison in Kilmainham, area of the city, it is now a museum run by the Office of Public Works.
- The National Museum of Ireland explores Irish heritage and culture.
- City parks include landscaped St Stephen’s Green and huge Phoenix Park, containing Dublin Zoo.
- Oscar Wilde's House, is one of Dublin's Top Tourist Attractions but unfortunately, it is not open to visitors. The house is now home to the American College. It's found opposite the Montclare Hotel, facing Merrion Square.
- Perhaps the must do activity is to visit the breweries and distilleries which Ireland is famous for. The Guinness Storehouse, taking you on a guided tour around the history of the drink, the making and a few sample tasting will get you totally immersed in this popular Irish drink! As well visit The Old Jameson Distillery, an Irish whiskey tourist attraction, shows the making of the spirit and free samples, only for adults! Very popular with visitors worldwide!
Dublin has a bustling young nightlife and its people are known for their love of all things that involve drinking, the Irish take their pubs and pints very seriously and it's little wonder traditional old pubs and bars dominate the nightlife scene.
The Temple Bar district is the hub of Dublin's nightlife scene and by far the most popular place to start. Visitors will find around 24 bars and 73 cafes and restaurants to choose from.
The Grafton Street side of things provides a much quieter and more relaxed alternative to the chaos of Temple Bar, attracting a different type of crowd. Wine bars are also becoming a popular addition to the entertainment scene, providing patrons with a wine list and reasonably priced meals.
🌈The gay scene in Dublin is taking off too and there are many gay clubs and bars springing up everywhere. Most pubs and bars close early, around 11pm, but some have official permission to stay open late.
On just about every night, visitors can enjoy rock, jazz, blues and traditional Irish folk concerts at theatres, sports stadiums, churches, clubs and castles.
Dublin may be small, with its two main shopping districts located no more than a 20 minute walk away from each other.
The largest of Dublin's shopping venues is the Jervis Shopping Centre. Located on the north side of the River Liffey, it offers two floors of shopping decadence, while the top floor is a food hall, where shoppers can stop to refuel. The Blanchardstown Centre spans two floors, four wings and a plethora of shops and boutiques that sell just about everything.
On the south side of the river is Grafton Street, where some of Dublin's most expensive shops can be found. The Blackrock Market is popular with tourists looking for locally produced arts, crafts and food. The Temple Bar district also has several markets for books and locally-produced foodstuffs. The House of Ireland on Nassau Street is the place to go to buy some of the finest quality souvenirs Ireland has to offer, from crystal to knitwear and Irish linen, which is still regarded as some of the best in the world. Other popular Dublin souvenirs are the cheap tin-whistles found in many shops.
The city has plenty of entertainment to offer and specially at the weekends it's popular for visitors to fill the streets up, staying in Dublin city centre can be expensive, (€130 per night) so going a little out of the city can be the trick to grab a reasonable Hotel and then pay a little more to get into the city to visit. With the added benefit of exploring more of the city and also being quieter areas out of the centre. (Prices can then be about €60) Bed & Breakfasts are very popular as well as Hostels for those on tight budgets. Also Airbnb is becoming a good option for private accommodation or shared houses. Staying during the week and in the lower season will be much cheaper.
Visiting Dublin won't take long, normally visitors go on a long weekend to enjoy the nightlife. It's easy to walk around on foot do the main landmarks of the city and cultural/historical buildings. Depending what's your preference, but 3 nights should be enough.