Ireland is a magical European adventure without a language barrier. It’s guaranteed to enchant you and bring you closer. Irish eyes will smile on your love whether you stay in a sophisticated modern city or a centuries old pastoral town.
Begin in a big city like Dublin or Galway, then get out into the countryside to enjoy the vibrant culture. Walk the trails of ancient history, follow the paths of great writers from Yeats to James Joyce to Frank McCourt and hundreds of others. Visit ancient castles, elegant Georgian homes and tiny historic cottages. Play a round of golf on a world famous course, watch the unique sport of hurling, share a joke or a song in almost any pub, go to the theater to see a drama or watch Riverdance where it was born, stay in a modern hotel or a charming Bed & Breakfast and you’ll discover that you’re welcome everywhere.
You’ll feel as if the country was made just for the two of you and your Irish honeymoon odyssey will be as romantic as can be.
At a Glance
- VISIT A PUB: The Irish public house (or bar) is an integral part of life. There are over 10,000 to choose from throughout the country. Even in the smallest towns, they are the center of local color, cozy places where you can chat, sing, have a beer and a snack and hear what makes the Irish world go ’round. Invite your neighbors for a drink and you’ll make new friends, learn about the best things to see in the area and the best ways to get there.
- TRY A GUINNESS: This hearty beer is an Irish tradition. There’s an art to drinking it. The bar tender fills the glass 3/4 of the way up, waits, then tops it off and serves it. Then, you wait till it settles and the colors deepens. Each swallow leaves rings on the glass so you can see how much you have left.
- DINE IN A CASTLE: Dromoland and Ashford are two famous history laden castles where you’ll feel like royalty as you stroll the exquisite grounds and enjoy a hearty meal in historic surroundings.
- LUNCH IN A VILLAGE: You’ll feel like you’re walking in postcard scenery when you meander through the narrow streets of beautiful places like Cong in County Mayo, Lismore in Tipperary, and Kinvara in Galway. There are hundreds throughout the country.
- SHOP: Wonderful products are for sale in modern malls and tiny shops. Hand knit Aran sweaters, Belfast linens, Donegal tweeds and Waterford crystal (Visiting the factory is memorable!) are just a few of the high quality treasures to be found! Ask about the Value Added Tax and you can get part of your money spent back when you leave the country.
- ENJOY A GOURMET DINNER: Ireland has become famous for cuisine. Talented chefs prepare creative dishes from the abundant fresh local produce. Splurge one night and you’ll be glad you did! In many restaurants, the setting is as memorable as the meal.
- PLAY A ROUND OF GOLF: Irish courses like Ballybunion, Port Marnock, Royal County Down, the K Club. Lahinch, and others are legendary. The scenery is breath- taking and the challenge is world famous. Be prepared to walk and dress for rain and wind.
- KISS THE BLARNEY STONE: It isn’t easy but ancient tales say you’ll get the gift of gab if you climb 127 steps, lie down, lean your head back and kiss the world famous stone.
- THE RING OF KERRY: Follow the 110 mi. road to Killarney and you’ll see some of most splendid scenery in the country. Panoramic ocean views from the high cliffs seem to get more beautiful around every turn in the road.
- ELECTRICITY: Wall plugs have three prongs. Get your own adaptor and plug before leaving home.
- BANKING: ATM’s give the best rate of exchange. However, all Irish ATM’s do not accept pin numbers with over four digits. Change to a four digit number before leaving home. If you want to exchange money back to dollars, begin two days early as all banks do not have foreign currency available.
- WEATHER: A typical day might include sunshine, strong winds, rain and sleet. Always keep an umbrella and rain jacket with you.
- RESTROOMS: They are often marked in Irish only–Fir (Men) and Mna (Women.)
- RENT A CAR: It’s the best way to explore the country and see the spectacular beauty. Drive on the right and prepare for narrow roads. Remember that speed limit signs are in kilometers/hr and that new highways can end suddenly.
- KNOW YOUR COUNTY: When asked where they’re from, Irish people will often name the county where they were born. Learn the county of the places you want to visit.
- INVEST IN A DETAILED MAP: Many road signs are written in Irish only.
- DRIVE SLOWLY IN THE COUNTRYSIDE: Flocks of sheep and goats meander the roads.
- ASK IF A SERVICE CHARGE HAS BEEN INCLUDED in your restaurant bill.
- WRITE DOWN YOUR DESTINATION IN IRISH: Ask your Concierge to help. Some road signs are in Irish only.