Ireland, or the Emerald Isle, is more than just great beer, cozy pubs and vast rolling green hills; this European island situated near Scotland, Wales and England has a lot to offer solo travellers, families and couples needing the majestic romance of this country steeped in a history of lovers.
It is possible to visit many cities in Ireland during your trip, as each are a manageable drive away from each other; you can drive from Dublin to Cork in about 3 hours, and from Dublin to Limerick in just over 2 hours. To make the most of your visit in Ireland, or for those dreaming of this destination, we’ve put together a bucket list of things to see and do. Happy St. Patrick’s Day!
Frank McCourt Museum, Limerick
I had the pleasure of visiting this quaint museum in the city of Limerick, and writing about it for the Toronto Star (read my article here). The museum is dedicated to the life of Frank McCourt, the Pulitzer Prize winning author of Angela’s Ashes. His book is a memoir of his tragic childhood growing up in poverty in the town of Limerick. Built inside the former school of McCourt, this museum celebrates not just the author’s life but the culture of Ireland during the time he writes about. The book was vastly popular, making McCourt celebrated around the world but no more so than in the town that continues to love him.
Science Gallery, Dublin
This one made my list of top family-friendly destinations in Ireland (read more here).
With exhibitions, talks and workshops, this tourist attraction in Dublin provokes conversation and debate over current scientific issues; it’s great for kids and adults alike!
National Museum of Ireland, Dublin
The National Museum of Ireland includes exhibitions housed in four locations: devoted to archaeology, decorative arts + history, country life and natural history.
You can explore exhibitions and learn more about the history of Ireland. Admission is free making this a great family thing to do on your visit.
Guinness Storehouse, Dublin
Guinness beer lovers will need to make a stop at the famous label’s storehouse a must do on the travel itinerary. Experience a tasting or grab a bite to eat at one of the bars, cafes or restaurants located here.
St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Dublin
Take a tour of the largest church in Ireland, built in honour of Ireland’s patron saint, St. Patrick. As an architectural and historic site, the cathedral offers informative tours. It is also an active place of worship for visitors and residents of Dublin.
Looking for to do in Dublin? Take a look at our ways to enjoy this great city.
Blarney Castle, Cork
It’s worth the trip to Cork to kiss the Blarney Stone in hopes of a lifetime of eloquence, or so the legend goes. Blarney Castle has roots that date back to the tenth century, when the first structure was built here out of wood (later rebuilt out of stone). Experience the history and legend of the castle grounds, including the famous Blarney Stone, the witch stone, and the tranquil gardens.
Ireland is a beautiful country and perfect for any sort of traveller – from those going it alone to family travel and large reunions. You can learn more about how to create your own dream Irish vacation by looking through the website for Tourism Ireland.
Trafalgar and Tourism Ireland are also offering Canadians a chance to win a 7-day guided vacation of Ireland for two. Trafalgar’s Irish Highlights guided vacation includes tours of Dublin, Galway, Cliffs of Moher, Limerick, Killarney, Blarney and the Waterford Crystal showroom and workshop.
For more information and to enter, visit here.