Limerick City Tourism And Travel Guide
3.9° C / 39.1° F
May to September
2 to 4 Days
Shannon Airport (24 kms)
Limerick Colbert Station
The third most populated city in Ireland, Limerick is situated in the heart of the Shannon Region along the river of the same name. Founded in 922 AD by the Vikings, the town was resettled by native Limerick folk in the early 11th-century and the Vikings were integrated into the Irish society. The English colonisation took place in the 12th-century, and all the technical skills and artistry that we see in the city today are a culmination of the different communities who have been residing here over the centuries. Limerick has a predominantly urban atmosphere that is surrounded by beautifully rustic rural landscapes. The city features many remnants of its historically significant past even today, which make up a large portion of what drives tourism in the region today. Check out our Limerick travel guide to know more about what makes this city so fascinating.
How to Reach
Shannon International Airport, which is situated about 20 km away from Limerick, is the nearest airport from the town. Regular flights operate from various destinations across Europe and North America to Shannon Airport; however, travellers from India will need to catch a connecting flight since there are no direct flights between the two destinations. Buses and taxis can be taken from the airport to Limerick, which is easily accessible via the N18 dual carriageway. Alternatively, travellers can also fly into Kerry or Cork Airport, which are situated just a couple of hours away from Limerick.
Irish Rail operates trains to and from Limerick Colbert Station. The main inter-city connections to Limerick are:
- 16 daily services from Dublin, 4 of which are direct
- 2 daily services from Waterford
- 5 daily services from Galway
- From Cork via Limerick Junction. There are no direct services between the two towns.
- Between Limerick and Killarney, Tralee and Faranfore via Limerick Junction
If travelling via road, take the M7 from Dublin, N/M20 from Cork, the N/M18 from Ennis, Galway and Shannon, the N21 from Tralee and the N24 from Waterford. Buses are operated by Bus Eireann and run to Limerick from a number of cities like Cork, Dublin and Waterford.
Weather & Best Time to Visit
Summer (June – August):
For those who like it warm, summers tend to be the most ideal time of the year to explore Limerick’s outdoor attractions. The average temperature ranges around 18⁰-20⁰C with plenty of daylight hours, allowing the visitors to enjoy the warm sunny days to their heart’s content and make the most out of their trip. The landscapes around the countryside are also at their vibrant best. Since it is peak season, expect to find large crowds at most tourist hotspots and higher rates in most hotels.
Spring (March - May) & Autumn (September – October):
The shoulder seasons of spring and autumn can often be a better time to visit Limerick than the summers. The weather is pleasant and almost as warm as the summers, with considerably lesser crowds and lowered hotel rates, making this a wonderful time for budget travellers to plan a trip. Temperatures average around 13⁰C during springtime and around 15⁰C during autumn.
Winter (November – February):
Winters are classified as off-season in Limerick. The lowest temperature during these months average around 5⁰C and rarely fall to freezing levels. The city gets considerably quiet and a lot of hotels shut down for the season. The hotels that do remain open though, often have good deals on offer. The month of December is filled with Christmas festivities and holiday sales. Be prepared for a lot of rain though, as this is also the wettest season of the year.
Things to Do
Visit the Museums:
Limerick is home to some amazing museums that are sure to keep you busy for a good number of hours. Begin your exploration with a trip to the Hunt Museum and learn more about Limerick’s regional history. At the Frank McCourt Museum, visitors get to learn about the Pulitzer-winning author’s life in the city. Old Irish Ways is a little spot that was put together by a local and plays up stereotypes of Ireland throughout history. The Limerick Museum is another great place where you get to satisfy your inner history buff by learning more about the city’s past.
Tour the Prehistoric Site of Lough Gur:
Lough Gur is situated around 20 km away from Limerick. The site is essentially a lake surrounded by ancient remains like a Neolithic burial site, traces of houses from the Stone Age, standing stones around burial mounds, and even a cult site with an imposing entranceway; all of which are proof of occupation in the region as far back as 5000 years ago. A visitor centre here offers fascinating historical facts about the lake and its shores with the help of state-of-the-art, interactive facilities.
Trekking and Mountain Biking at Ballyhoura:
The Ballyhoura Woods has extensive trails stretching for almost 100 km in the east-west direction. With a wide range of difficulty levels with these trails, they are a great option not just for hiking but mountain biking as well. The Greenwood Loop is perfect for newcomers, whereas the 50 km-Castlepook Loop is mostly for pros.
Where to Shop
Thomas Street, Roches Street and Catherine Street is often dubbed as the fashion quarter in Limerick and has rows of boutiques lined up for your retail therapy. Lucky Lane is one spot where you could practically find anything; whether its books, artworks, clothing items, or locally produced foods. Some of the best design items made from stone, metal and glass can be found in Made in Limerick, which make good souvenirs to take back home with you.
A trip to Limerick is also incomplete without a visit to the Milk Market, the most iconic farmers’ market in the city with the freshest produce you’ll ever find. A wide range of organic items like fruits and vegetables, jams and preserves, artisan cheeses etc. are sold here every week.
Where to Eat
The Dolan’s Pub & Restaurant is an amazing place where you get to combine your love for music with hearty Irish food. Some of the local favourites include a lamb stew in a herb broth, Limerick bacon and cabbage and many other equally appetising dishes. Freddy’s Bistro is a family-owned award-winning spot known for its local cuisine that includes a variety of dishes from steak to seafood, served in a lovely rustic environment.
Sash Restaurant holds the emphasis on home-cooked food with a contemporary twist. Everything they serve is locally sourced with seasonal ingredients. Visit the Curragower Bar & Restaurant for spectacular options like seafood chowder and seafood pie with cod, prawns and salmon.