I would say that one of my favorite countries to visit is Ireland. On two occasions I’ve been privileged to host tours we organized for those who appreciate travel with that concierge flare. Spring is my favorite time in Ireland. Spring in Ireland is like being in the land of OZ with its Emerald City covered in flowers.
I have now been to both Northern Ireland – which is part of the United Kingdom – and the Republic of Ireland – which is a completely separate sovereign country historically called Eire in the Gaelic language. No matter where one travels in Ireland, whether to the Ring of Kerry, the Dingle Coast or Belfast, I have found one thing to be true: the people of Ireland are some of the warmest and friendliest people I have ever met.
Here are 8 places and activities I loved when I was there:
The Pubs They are fun and inviting – very different from our U.S. Bars. They are where friends and families meet to eat and be entertained; a place to unwind at the end of the day and enjoy everything you’ve ever seen with their warm hospitality.
It’s is a city full of life and fun from soccer games, Trinity College – which has the book of Kells – to wonderful Irish Dinner shows.
South of Dublin is one of my favorite places: Kilkenny. Think of the greenest, lushest, most picturesque village with horse drawn carriages and rippling rivers running through and you have Kilkenny. From there, you can see the Ring of Kerry and Blarney Castle and kiss the famous Blarney Stone (no, I did not).
Dingle Peninsula Coast
From Kilkenny head over to the Dingle Peninsula coast, with its Blasket Islands where monks lived a very impoverished life. I truly enjoyed the Flying Boat museum where Pan Am made its first Atlantic flights and also home of the famous Irish coffee. Yummy!
If you want to experience a fun entertaining Dinner show with music and food from the renaissance days, go to Bunratty Castle where you’ll eat with your fingers as you’re entertained by strolling musicians…
The Cliffs of Moher If you like the wild stark beauty of the ocean, the Cliffs of Moher is just that place! Walk out to the castle or climb to the top for a breath taking view. There is simply no other place like it.
Foxmore Wool Mills
Heading north you can visit the Foxmore Wool mills where during the potato famine Ireland was saved by bringing in the wool industry and they were able to export their beautiful wool products.
High Tea And finally, while in Ireland you must experience High Tea. I experienced my first High Tea in Northern Ireland on a catamaran on a beautiful lake.
All in all, Ireland should be on everyone’s Bucket List!
Glynna Hileman took her first cruise to the Bahamas 20 years ago and turned a pleasurable experience into a career! Although recently retired, Glynna was with CruiseExperts.com for more than 10 years. She specialized in Europe (including Ireland), the Mediterranean (East and West) and river cruising. She has visited Alaska four times - by cruise and by land - Mexico, the Panama Canal and the Caribbean.
Glynna had the pleasure of being a CruiseExperts.com tour guide for many groups and has visited all but three continents. She is now enjoying her retirement in Arkansas.
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