Ireland Tourism And Travel Guide
10° C / 50° F
April to September
5 to 7 Days
Ireland is a beautiful republic in the country of the United Kingdom. What is unique about this place is its superstitions that people follow even when they are educated and modern, the history and myth that finds its way into everyday lives and the Guinness Beer that is drunk even at breakfast sometimes. In such a fun country, how can tourism not be fun? Ireland is best visited in summers and autumns, with winters being avoided for they limit your chances of outdoor fun. Read this travel guide to Ireland for a brief inroad into the place and its offerings.
How to Reach
The easiest way to reach Ireland from India is by flying. Thence you can use other modes like road and railways to commute domestically.
The four main international airports of Ireland are Dublin, Shannon, Cork and Ireland West. You can take a connecting flight from an Indian city like Mumbai or Delhi to one of these cities. Or fly to London and then take another flight or train. Etihad, Air India, Turkish Airlines and Lufthansa are some regular airlines connecting India to Ireland.
A road trip from India to Ireland is not a feasible option, however, you can tour the country by going from north to south, or do a road journey of the Ring of Kerry. You can also drive into Ireland from England, Scotland, Latvia, Estonia or Poland too. Eurolines buses are also available, along with coaches and cars on hire.
Enterprise Service, Ireland’s premium railway service is run by Northern Ireland Railways and the Irish Rail. It connects Belfast Central and Dublin Connolly, also connecting Ireland to London. Train journeys are pretty scenic and make for a memorable vista of the Irish countryside.
Weather and Best Time to Visit
Irish climate is usually merciful all throughout the year, even though winters are pretty cold (not in negative temperatures for the most part). Rain is constant and unpredictable throughout the year so consult this guide as well as the daily report through your stay in Ireland.
Spring (February to May):
The spring season in Ireland commences by February and lasts up until May, with temperatures hovering around 15°C by the end of the season. February is still dark and cold. But come March and the place becomes green, dark green like the Emerald. Spring is a good shoulder season to visit Ireland.
Summer (June to September):
This is the most swamped-up time of Ireland, with tourists packed to bursting. If you want to enjoy sunny days then this is the time. The drawback being inflated rates of accommodation and loads of crowds at major attractions. The average temperature is 30°C.
Autumn in Ireland is short, very relaxed and a budget time to visit. The tourists are all but thinned and rates are down, the temperature is at 17°C, going down to 14°C by the end of the month.
Winter (November to January):
Ireland winters are cold, dark and excessively rainy. Snow is limited to only mountains and hilly regions. Dublin’s Christmas is a beautiful affair, with lit up night markets and decorations; while Belfast makes the most of cold days by keeping its pubs and bars pumping with energy. Sadly, the castles, isles, moors and cave expeditions are not advised at this time.
Things to Do
A Game of Thrones Tour:
Ireland has served as the shooting location for major portions of the hit HBO series Game of Thrones. You must visit Castle Ward, which was made into Winterfell (the home of the House of Stark), Ballintoy Harbour (Iron Islands) and Cushenden Caves (the cave where Melisandre gave birth). There are many more tours specially arranged in different parts of Ireland.
Cruise down River Shannon:
River Shannon appears in most Irish folklores and myths, and is the longest river here. A cruise down this river is all parts relaxing and mythical and magical. You can navigate the waters on a boat, a cruiser or even a yacht. They are rented out in all levels of luxury. Limerick to Lower Lough Erne route is the best one.
Drink Guinness Beer:
Ireland’s national drink is beer, and the best among many is Guinness Beer. Visit the Guinness Storehouse in Dublin to enjoy a tour and learn how this special beer is brewed, distilled and packed. The seventh floor of the building is dedicated to a bar - the Gravity Bar, where you get to drink pints of Guinness, eat some cakes and desserts prepared in Guinness as well as see Dublin city spread out under you.
Dublin Cultural Walk:
A walk through the many facets of Dublin city is the best way to discover Irish culture. Walk through the Temple Bar region to enjoy local Irish folk music, thumping pubs and bars and walls painted in murals and graffiti. The courtyard at Trinity College is another great heritage walk, as is the museum of Dublinia where you discover the lifestyle of ancient Vikings. For some leisure peaceful time, walk across River Liffey.
Listen to Stories of Irish Superstitions:
From women proposing on leap year day to not handing scissors to a friend, considering a bird’s poop lucky to seeing an itching left hand as unlucky, the Irish have a superstition for every hour of the day. The best way to discover these is by spending some time chatting up with the locals at pubs or cafes. They are very affable and sweet and weave tall tales of faeries and leprechauns and elves in the forests by river Shannon.
Some of the best pubs in Ireland are Temple Bar in Dubin, The Reg in Waterford, and the Guinness Storehouse. You must drink copious beers here, they are the best. For food, some of the best Irish dishes are not gourmet or designer ones but coarse, everyday meals like the soda bread, Irish stew, black and white pudding and colcannon. Some of the best places to enjoy everyday Irish fare are Actons pub, An Port Mór, Ashtons Gastropub (craft beers) and Aqua Restaurant in Dublin. For Indians who want desi food to satisfy their needs, head to Ananda Restaurant. Barron's Bakery Coffee Shop is the best place for a Nice coffee and is also one of the oldest bakeries in the region.
Thinking of what to bring back from Ireland as souvenir? Well, Ireland is known for its luscious delicious milk chocolates, wool kits, woollen throws and rugs, as well as pottery and ceramic articles. You can also pick up Irish whiskey, beers (Guinness please), leather goods and Claddagh Ring. The best streets for shopping in Ireland are Grafton Street and Francis Street in Dublin and St Patrick’s Street (Pana) in Cork. Other than these, book nerds, welcome to your paradise. The Irish are fond of books and sell them at every corner.