Visiting Ireland changed my life, and I would suspect the same may happen to you. I wasn’t prepared for the overwhelming beauty and ancient history that prevails through The Emerald Isle. I have never met more kind, generous, loving and fun minded people in all my travels. You will instantly fall in love with everyone on this island. The Irish people are proud of their history, but never take themselves too seriously. Always ready for a lively conversation and are very inquisitive with their foreign visitors. We spent 14 days on this beautiful island and barely scratched the surface of all the amazing sites.
Here are the Top 10 Sites you must visit on your trip to this magical place.
#1 The Ring of Kerry Located on the southwest coast in County Kerry. Known for its natural beauty, significant history and culture. Traveling on the “ring” you will visit many iconic sites and see stunning landscapes.
#2 Bunratty Castle Located in County Claire, this castle, among many in Ireland, was built in the early 15th Century and refurbished in 1954. It claims to be “the most authentic and complete medieval castle in Ireland”. You can also enjoy a medieval banquet held nightly with music and a show.
#3 County Meath County Meath in steeped in Irish history, this is where the Irish High Kings ruled until the 11th century. Your visit will include seeing megalithic structures predating the pyramids of Egypt. You will also visit the newly refurbished Slane Castle.
#4 The Aran Islands A quick ferry ride from Galway City, you will be immersed on these islands with rugged beauty and landscapes. The Irish language is still spoken here remaining true to their heritage.
#5 The Guinness Storehouse in Dublin In the heart of the lively city of Dublin in the St James Brewery you will visit the famous fermentation plant. You will learn the history of the Guinness brand, enjoy a pint in the Gravity Bar with incredible views of the city. You can also enjoy the tasting room and restaurant during the Guinness and Food Experience.
#6 Jameson Distilleries Located in both Dublin and County Cork you will learn about the history of creating “the world’s best Irish whiskey”. You will enjoy a workshop and tour taking you from grain to glass.
#7 Blarney Castle The best known and most visited castle in all of Ireland. It has many things to see and do besides the Blarney Stone. You can kiss the Blarney Stone (cleaned many times throughout the day), it is said once you kiss the Blarney Stone you will never be at a loss for words again.
#8 Cliffs of Moher You MUST experience the Cliffs of Moher. One of the worlds most amazing natural wonders. It feels like the edge of the world. You will feel and taste the sea air high above the coast line at a dizzying height.
#9 Ashford Castle Ashford Castle has won many awards for “Ireland’s top hotel destination”. This fairy tale castle is located in County Mayo, you can enjoy many activities on this 350-acre estate that was once owned by the Guinness family. A stay here is not complete without a visit to the world-renowned spa.
#10 Skellig Islands Off the cost of County Kerry, you will be able to see these majestic islands by both sea and land. Housed on these islands is the second largest gannet colony in the world. On top of Skellig Michael you can visit a 6th century monastic settlement. You can also see where they filmed “Luke’s Refuge” in Star Wars VII and Star Wars VIII.
There are so many other sites to see and things to do, this is just a list of the Top 10 I believe that any visitor should see on their first trip. Let’s begin planning your trip to this beautiful and magical island.