Whether you want to get away from the hustle and bustle of city life or explore somewhere new, Ireland is the perfect place. This small island is packed with so much history, culture, and natural beauty, that you'll never be bored.
Ireland has so much to offer, from its stunning coastline to rolling green hills. And of course, no trip to Ireland would be complete without experiencing its vibrant culture and meeting its friendly people.
Read on to learn more about the top attractions in Ireland and how you can see them.
Top Attractions in Ireland
Ireland has some of the most beautiful scenery in the world. From its rugged coastline to its lush green fields, there's something for everyone to enjoy.
Here's the list of some of the most visited attractions in Ireland that you won't want to miss:
The Cliffs of Moher
The Cliffs of Moher is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Ireland. These stunning cliffs rise to 702 feet (214 meters) and offer breathtaking views of the Atlantic Ocean. The cliffs are located in County Clare on the west coast of Ireland.
If you want to experience the Cliffs of Moher in all their glory, then you can walk along the trail that runs along the top of the cliffs. You can also take a boat tour from the nearby town of Doolin, which will take you right to the base of the cliffs.
No trip to Ireland would be complete without visiting the Guinness Storehouse. This seven-story museum is located in Dublin, and it offers a fascinating insight into the history of Guinness, as well as a chance to sample some of the world-famous beer.
If you're interested in learning more about the history of Guinness, then you can take a tour of the storehouse. The tour includes a visit to the brewing room, where you can see how the beer is made.
Trinity College is one of the oldest universities in Ireland and is located in the heart of Dublin. Founded in 1592, the college is world-famous for its alumni, including some of the most famous names in literature, such as Oscar Wilde and Bram Stoker.
The college is also home to the world-famous Book of Kells, an illuminated manuscript of the Gospels that dates back to the 9th century. If you're interested in seeing the Book of Kells, you can take a tour of the Trinity College Library.
Blarney Castle is a medieval castle located in County Cork in the south of Ireland. The castle is famous for the "Blarney Stone", which is said to give the "gift of the gab" to those who ascend the tower, lean over backward out the parapet, and give the stone a wee kiss.
The castle is open to the public, and you can explore the grounds and gardens and the castle itself. The garden does have a fair few toxic plants, so be careful where you step!
Ring of Kerry
The Ring of Kerry is a scenic route that winds its way around the Iveragh Peninsula in County Kerry in southwest Ireland. The route is 111 miles (179 kilometers) long and takes in some of the most stunning scenery in Ireland, including the Gap of Dunloe and Rossbeigh Beach.
The Ring of Kerry is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Ireland and can be explored by car, bike, or even on foot. If you're short on time, there are a number of guided tours that will take you around the route.
The Aran Islands are, basically, a chain of three islands located off the west coast of Ireland in County Galway. Inishmore, Inishmaan, and Inishsheer are the three islands that make up the Aran Islands, and each one has its own unique charm.
The Aran Islands are famous for their traditional Irish culture and beautiful landscapes. If you want a truly authentic Irish experience, then you can take a trip to one of the islands to see the ancient fort of Dun Aengus or the thatched cottages of Inishmore.
Grafton Street is one of the most popular shopping streets in Dublin and is located in the city center. The street is pedestrianized and is lined with a variety of shops, cafes, and restaurants. Performance artists are also a common sight on Grafton Street, and you may be lucky enough to see a musician or two.
Grafton Street is the perfect place to do some shopping while you're in Dublin, and you're sure to find something for yourself. There are a number of department stores on the street, as well as smaller shops selling Irish-themed souvenirs.
The Rock of Cashel
The Rock of Cashel is a medieval castle located in the County Tipperary in the south of Ireland. The castle is present on a rocky outcrop and is one of the most iconic landmarks on the Emerald Isle.
The Rock of Cashel was the seat of the Kings of Munster for centuries and is now open to the public. You can explore the castle grounds and see the ancient chapel, graveyard, and walls. If you're interested in Irish history, then the Rock of Cashel is a must-see.
Jameson Distillery Midleton
The Jameson Distillery Midleton is located in the town of Midleton in County Cork in the south of Ireland. The distillery is situated in an old woolen mill, where Jameson Irish whiskey is produced.
The distillery offers a number of tours, including a tour of the Jameson visitor center, a tour of the production process, and a tasting of the whiskey.
How to See the Top Attractions in Ireland
Now that you know more about the top attractions in Ireland, it's time to start planning your trip. You can either go for group travel or do self-guided tours.
One of the best ways to see the top attractions in Ireland is by going on a group guided tour. This is a great option if you don't have several weeks to spend exploring your destination, or if want to make sure that you see all of the main sights together with a few familiar faces and ready to make friends with others.
Private or hared coach tours are probably the most popular, making the journey easy and carefree while soaking up the best of the sights and attractions. No worries about parking, train times, or whether you'd like to enjoy a cheeky second pint of Guinness.
If you prefer a more personal touch or want to explore more at your own pace, then an escorted private tour is definitely the way to go. This option gives you the flexibility to travel at your own pace and choose your own itinerary - or have one crafted just for you!
What is the best time to visit in terms of weather?
Many visitors will agree that the best time to visit Ireland is between May and September. During these months the weather is usually warm and typically much sunnier than the rest of the year, making it ideal for exploring the outdoors. Just bear in mind that it's also the peak tourist season, so you can expect crowds at some of the popular attractions.
If you're interested in doing outdoor activities, such as hiking or biking, then summer is the best season. However, if you're more interested in indoor activities, such as visiting museums and galleries, then you can go any time of year - it'll likely still be green!
What is the best time to visit in terms of crowds?
If you want to avoid the crowd, September and October are the best months. This is the shoulder season when the weather is still pleasant, but the crowds have thinned out.
If you want to avoid the crowds altogether, you can visit Ireland during the winter months. However, keep in mind that the weather can be cold and wet during this time of year.
When is the best time for festivals and events?
Though festivals and events are held throughout the year, the best time to catch a celebration is during the summer months. It's the time when the island comes alive with music, dance, and cultural celebrations. Some of the most popular festivals and events include the Galway International Arts Festival, the Cork Jazz Festival, and the Dublin Fringe Festival.
Dublin also hosts several major events, such as St. Patrick's Day and the Dublin marathon. If you're interested in attending events and festivals, then you should plan your trip accordingly.
No matter when you decide to visit Ireland, you're sure to have an unforgettable experience. Just be sure to plan ahead to make the most of your trip.