Ireland Travel Guide
The Emerald Isle
Ireland has been on my travel list for awhile, and when I saw that Ed Sheeran was playing the start of his tour here, I couldn't pass up on the opportunity! This country is full of beauty, beer, and a good time. You may say its the luck of the Irish- but we saw a rainbow every single day while here! We also got lucky too many times to count- we boarded our flight after the gate closed (30 minutes prior), scored Ed Sheeran tickets even though it was sold out, and had incredible weather while visiting. You might believe its luck, but I believe its God! ð
Where to Stay
We stayed just a little bit outside of the city at the Royal Marine Hotel overlooking Dublin Bay. It is just a short train right or taxi into downtown. We took the train most often, as it was just a block away, but when we chose taxi the price was only around 30 Euros to get into the city! You can uber as well, but I found it was usually quicker to take a taxi!
I really loved staying at the Royal Marine, it was beautiful and charming! The sea view was so gorgeous, and the scene was lively with people walking in the park or headed towards the pier. It was a beautiful area, and lots of locals were staying here as well as a staycation. It gave me Cape Cod vibes! â
The hotel also has a wonderful afternoon tea- which you know is the quickest way to sell me on anything. We enjoyed tea and champagne overlooking the beautiful bay one afternoon and it was lovely!
You can book the Royal Marine Hotel by clicking here. â
Cliffs of Moher & Galway Trip
If you're only visiting Dublin and want to see more of Ireland (which I highly recommend) this was one of the best tours that I found! Ireland is actually comparable to the size of Indiana, so it is very easy to get around and see it all! The Cliffs of Moher is a MUST when in Ireland... it is absolutely gorgeous. This is the tour that we did:
I have always wanted to see the Cliffs of Moher and it did not disappoint! I was even more excited that included Galway as well, especially because I wanted to sing "Galway Girl" by Ed Sheeran... and we in fact did sing this "sing-song" on the way to Galway in the tour bus! Singing "sing-songs" is something really fun about Dublin that they like to do when having fun or at the pub. Our tour guide for this trip was great at singing sing-songs as well. This tour was great because our guide told us lots of history and facts while on the way! It is about a 2.5 hour drive from Dublin to Cliffs of Moher, which was our first stop! Once you get to the coast, the drive is absolutely remarkable. There is so much of Ireland to see just on the drive itself!
The weather in Ireland can be raining one minute and sunshine the next, so make sure you come prepared! Don't be disappointed if you arrive to the Cliffs and its down pouring, it will usually clear up in a few minutes. No need to bring umbrellas though- it is usually to windy for them to work!
I found it especially exciting that puffins nest at the Cliffs of Moher. The best time to see them is from May to June, although on our trip here in late March, some arrived early! The park rangers said they had seen them earlier that day, but I just missed them. :(
I also found some other Tours from Dublin that include the Cliffs of Moher that also look great!
The next stop on our journey was then Galway!
Galway is a vibrant city on the west coast of Ireland, known for its charming cobblestone streets, colorful buildings, and lively music scene. Here are a few fun facts about Galway that you might not know:
1. Galway is often referred to as the "City of the Tribes," as it was once ruled by 14 prominent merchant families.
2. The famous Claddagh ring, a symbol of love and loyalty, originated in Galway.
3. Galway is home to the annual Galway International Arts Festival, which attracts over 225,000 visitors each year.
4. The city is also known for its seafood, particularly its oysters, which are celebrated each September during the Galway International Oyster and Seafood Festival.
5. The Galway Cathedral, located on the banks of the River Corrib, is one of the most impressive churches in all of Ireland.
6. Galway is a bilingual city, with Irish (Gaeilge) and English both spoken.
7. Galway is considered the cultural capital of Ireland, with a thriving arts community and a rich history that is reflected in its architecture, museums, and festivals.
Things to Do in Dublin
Dublin, the capital of Ireland, is a city filled with history, culture, and of course, delicious food and drink. A visit to Dublin is incomplete without doing the following things:
1. Visit the Guinness Storehouse
The Guinness Storehouse is one of the top attractions in Dublin, and for good reason. Here, you can learn about the history and craftsmanship of the world-famous Irish stout. At the end of the tour, you can enjoy a pint of fresh Guinness from the Gravity Bar with stunning views over Dublin. We even had our faces printed on a pint of Guinness! This is a must-do when in Dublin. â
2. Explore Trinity College and the Book of Kells
Trinity College is Ireland's oldest university, founded in 1592- most famous for its incredible library. The campus is stunning, with a mix of modern and historic buildings. The highlight of any visit to Trinity College is the Book of Kells exhibition. The Book of Kells is an illuminated manuscript created by Irish monks over a thousand years ago.
3. Stroll through Temple Bar
Temple Bar is one of Dublin's most famous neighborhoods, known for its lively pubs and restaurants, street performers, and live music. You HAVE to go to the pub at least once when in Ireland! We went to Temple Bar after the Ed Sheeran concert and had a time.
4. Visit Dublin Castle
Dublin Castle was first built in the 13th century and has served as a government building ever since. Visitors can explore the castle's state apartments, Gothic chapel, and beautiful gardens.
5. Take a stroll through Phoenix Park
Phoenix Park is one of the largest city parks in Europe and is home to the Dublin Zoo and Ãras an UachtarÃ¡in (the official residence of the President of Ireland). The park is a beautiful escape from the city and offers plenty of walking and cycling trails, as well as opportunities to spot wildlife such as deer.
6. Enjoy an Irish Breakfast and Coffee
No trip to Dublin is complete without trying a traditional Irish breakfast. Usually consisting of eggs, bacon, sausage, black and white pudding, tomatoes, and toast, it's a hearty start to the day. Pair it with a strong cup of Irish coffee, which is made with whiskey, coffee, and whipped cream. Our hotel had a really great Irish breakfast, it was one of my favorites!
Hop On Hop Off Tour
You can really see most of the hot-spots in Dublin in a day, and a great way to do that is by doing a hop-on hop off tour! Here is a great one that I recommend: DoDublin Hop-On Hop Off Tours
Overall, Dublin is a city with something to offer everyone. Whether you're interested in history, culture, or just good food and drink, you're sure to have a wonderful time.
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