Ireland is by far one of the most interesting travel destinations to visit in every season in Europe. It’s a country that’s packed with a majestic history, vibrant culture, and natural beauty.
The best thing about Ireland is how diverse it is. On one hand, there are bustling cities to explore, each representing everything that is urban and loud. Shoppers, foodies, and arts and culture lovers will find much delight in cosmopolitan destinations like Dublin, Cork, and Galway.
And on the other hand, for those who are looking to take a trip away from the hustle and bustle of city-living, steering your car off the beaten path will lead to stretches of desolate grasslands dotted with glacial lakes, breath-taking sea cliffs plummeting into the Atlantic, and ancient castles overlooking great sceneries.
If you have never been to Ireland before, or maybe you live here but have yet to explore its beauty, either way - here’s a bucket list of the top 10 things to do in Ireland.
Read more: What Is the Best Time To Visit Ireland?
1. Drive the Wild Atlantic Way
Quite appropriately named, Ireland’s famous road route the “Wild Atlantic Way” features 2,500km of some of the best wild scenery the island has to offer, from Country Donegal to County Cork. This road trip is magnificent, with views that will not be rivalled. Have your cameras ready as you’ll want to remember this trip.
2. Cliffs of Moher
If you don’t have time to drive the full Wild Atlantic Way, a clear favourite along the way is the Cliffs of Moher in County Clare. Standing atop some 666 feet, you’ll see right out over the Atlantic as you watch the waves tumble against the cliffs, and if you are lucky enough to be there on a clear day you may even see the Aran Islands.
3. Aran Islands
Famous for its rolling hills and fields separated by 1,500 miles of rustic mortarless walls, the harsh terrain of the Aran Islands also provides one of Ireland’s warmest welcomes. With three islands occupying just 18 square miles of land, the trip by ferry from Galway and Dingle will transport you back to a time when Gaelic was the first language and Ireland felt like the edge of the Earth.
4. The Guinness Store House Dublin
The most popular visit in town is this multimedia homage to Guinness in a converted grain storehouse that is part of the 26-hectare brewery. Across its seven floors, you'll discover everything about Guinness before getting to taste it in the top-floor Gravity Bar, with its panoramic views. The floor directly below has a very good restaurant, pre-booking is essential but well worth it, tasty food with a view of the glistening lights of Dublin city.
5. Kilmainham Gaol
In the heart of Dublin City, this is one our Ireland key pieces of heritage. If you have any desire to understand Irish history – especially the juicy bits about resistance to British rule – then a visit to this former prison is an absolute must.
6. The Ring of Kerry
With stunning rugged islands, white-sand beaches, dramatic mountain passes and valleys – the Ring of Kerry works its magic as you travel from rugged coastline to charming villages and true Irish towns. This trip can also be driven in a day, but it is recommended to take your time and take in the views!
7. The Burren Co Clare
Enjoy driving the Burren route through the winding roads and soak in the dramatic views - during the drive, you will experience vast wild landscapes, abandoned cottages, castles, ring forts, and more.
8. Glendalough River Co Wicklow
For years now, people have been drawn to ‘the valley of the two lakes’ for its spectacular scenery, rich history, archaeology and abundant wildlife. Glendalough is a remarkable place that will calm your mind, inspire your heart and fill your soul with wonder. It is a great way to relax after the hustle and bustle of Dublin, just a short 30 mins drive outside the city centre.
9. Cliffden, Co Galway
Clifden, the largest town in Connemara, is nestled between the Twelve Bens mountain range and the Atlantic Ocean, at the mouth of Clifden Bay. The area is known for its rich landscape and heritage. Clifden has an impact on all who visit. It is a charming little town, with something to suit everyone. It’s a colourful town, literally, each shop front is painted a different colour to bring the town alive.
10. Beara Island
This area is a short drive from Cork Airport. The Island is peaceful, with very few semi-permanent residents. It is cut off by a thin stretch of water, and can only be reach by cable car, Irelands one and only Cable Car. This quaint little town is beautiful, and from the cable car, you get picturesque views of the mountain all around you.
So, there you have it! I hope this will help you plan and make the most of your next trip to Ireland! If there's anything that I missed, let me know in the comment section below!
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