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Ireland Travel Guide

Looking for an in-depth Ireland travel guide?

Then you’re in the right place!

If you think Ireland is all leprechauns, rainbows and pints of Guinness, it’s definitely time to book a trip to the Emerald Isle.

This beautiful island made up of two countries (the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland) is full of lush landscapes, friendly faces, and rich history.

Whether you’re visiting Ireland for the first time or the fiftieth, we’ve got you covered with plenty of travel tips.

Located just west of Great Britain, Ireland has something to offer every type of traveler. Of course, there are plenty of sites you simply can’t miss during your trip.

In County Clare, you’ll find the breathtaking Cliffs of Moher, a series of sea cliffs that run nine miles along the Atlantic Coast. Regardless if you see the cliffs by foot on one of the area’s many trails or by boat, you’re sure to marvel at one of the most stunning natural sights on Earth.

Up for some more cliffs?

Visit the Ring of Kerry, a scenic seaside road trip with incredible views of the ocean.

You probably won’t want to leave Ireland without kissing the Blarney Stone at Blarney Castle. Located just outside Cork, this famed tradition is said to bring those who partake the gift of eloquence. No more awkward conversations for you!

If you’re really looking to get off the beaten path, head to the Aran Islands in Galway Bay, a top destination for its astounding cliffs and ancient Celtic sights.

And for a seaside escape on the mainland, Dingle in County Kerry is the place to be.

While in Ireland, you’ll also probably want to spend some time in the nation’s capital of Dublin. While here, explore Trinity College, home to one of the oldest manuscripts in the world, the Book of Kells.

You can also take a stroll through St. Stephen’s Green a gorgeous, tree-lined park that is also home to the Museum of Literature of Ireland (or MoLI). After your walk, head down Grafton Street to check out some of the local buskers and have a pint in one of the city’s many pubs.

Dublin also makes a great starting point for those looking to explore Ireland by car or train.

Keep reading to dive into resources that will help you with planning a trip to Ireland in Europe.

Note: This ultimate guide to Ireland travel contains affiliate links to trusted partners!

Ireland Map

Use this Ireland travel map to begin planning your trip to this incredible country!

Ireland map

Click here for an interactive Google Map version of the above graphic.

Places To Travel In Ireland

The following Ireland travel information can help you decide where to visit!

Ireland Travel Tips

Looking for Ireland travel advice? Check out the following Ireland travel guides full of suggestions!

Ireland Walking Tours & Experiences

Explore local culture with an Ireland tour guide through these unique excursions:

  • Cork Food & History Tour
  • Fast-track Easy Access Book of Kells Tour with Dublin Castle
  • Cliffs of Moher Tour Including Wild Atlantic Way and Galway City from Dublin
  • Northern Ireland Highlights Day Trip Including Giant’s Causeway from Dublin
  • Celtic Boyne Valley Day Trip from Dublin
  • Guinness Storehouse Entrance Ticket in Dublin
  • Wicklow Day Trip with Guided Walk Including Glendalough Tour from Dublin
  • Game of Thrones™ Filming Locations and Giant’s Causeway from Dublin
  • The Ring of Kerry Day Trip including Killarney Lakes and National Park

Renting A Car In Ireland

Need a rental car for your Ireland trip?

Use Discover Cars to quickly compare your car rental options.

Their comparison tool does the homework for you, so there’s no need to have up 10+ tabs trying to figure out which company is the most affordable. Actually, you can save up to 70% using their tool!

Ireland Train Travel

Getting around Ireland by train, bus, or ferry?

Omio is a must! I use this tool for all of my public transportation needs when traveling in Europe.

The site is straightforward and user-friendly — and you can pre-book your tickets in advance at a discount.

They even offer flight and car deals!

Ireland Hotels

Click here to browse the best Ireland travel hotels!

Prefer self-contained stays?

Click here to check out unique local rentals!

You can also use this map to search for local stays:

Ireland Travel Insurance

It doesn’t matter if you’re traveling solo or with a group on an Ireland tour. When visiting Ireland — or any other country in the world — make sure to get travel insurance to protect your health and safety.

In my opinion, the best travel medical insurance for travelers is SafetyWing as they’ve got a large network and offer both short-term and long-term coverage — including coverage if you’re traveling for months as well as limited coverage in your home country).

Additionally, SafetyWing is budget-friendly and offers $250,000 worth of coverage with just one low overall deductible of $250.

With coverage, you’ll have peace of mind as you embark on your Ireland travel itinerary.

Click my referral link here to price out travel insurance for your trip in just a few clicks.

Ireland Travel Guide FAQ

Below, find answers to frequently asked questions about traveling in Ireland.

Q: What is the best month to travel in Ireland?

May is probably the best month to visit Ireland as it offers many of the perks of peak season (June through September) with smaller crowds.

While the weather won’t be quite as warm (expect temperatures near 60°F), it’s pleasant enough to comfortably explore everything the country has to offer.

On the other side of the peak season, late September through early October is also a great time to visit Ireland.

Q: How should I prepare for a trip to Ireland?

There are a few important things to know when preparing for a trip to Ireland.

First off, you should know that there are two countries on the island of Ireland: the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland, which is part of the United Kingdom.

It’s a good idea to read up on the history of the two Irelands a bit before your trip. You can travel freely between the two countries but be prepared to use two different currencies if you do: the Republic of Ireland uses the Euro while Northern Ireland uses the British Pound.

Ireland is also well-known for its rainy climate and you will almost certainly encounter some showers while you’re there. Pack accordingly; a good raincoat or jacket, a travel umbrella, and good shoes are highly recommended.

When you’re out exploring, dress in layers, as the weather can change at any time. And if you’re visiting in the fall or winter, be sure to pack some warm clothes.

If you want to venture a bit off the beaten path in Ireland, rent a car. This will allow you to explore the country without the constraints of a train or bus schedule and check out small towns and sites that might not be on the main route. Just be aware that drivers use the left-hand side of the road in Ireland as opposed to the right side used in the U.S.

Trains are also a good option for exploring Ireland but can be pricey. If you want to see the country by rail, be sure to book your tickets early online. You’ll find some good discounts when you book in advance.

Q: How many days do you need to see Ireland?

Most experts recommend planning about 7 to 8 days for a trip to Ireland. This will allow you to spend a few days in Dublin and enough time to venture out to destinations like Galway, the Cliffs of Moher, and Kylemore Abbey.

A longer trip will allow you to spend more time in each destination. If you want to make a full loop around the island, plan for 10 days or more.

Q: Is Ireland expensive to visit?

Ireland can be a bit pricier than other European destinations, particularly if you’re traveling during peak season. Goods imported into the island can be more expensive than in other countries and taxes on certain products can be high. The average traveler spends about $132 USD per day in Ireland on accommodations, food, transportation, activities, and more.

Of course, there are ways to stretch your budget while visiting the Emerald Isle.

For example, spending less time in Dublin — the most expensive city in the country — will save you some money, as will avoiding touristy areas and pubs with cover charges.

You’ll also spend less on accommodations by booking multiple nights in a hotel or bed and breakfast over one-night stays in different places.

And of course, there are plenty of hostels available in cities like Dublin, Galway, and Cork.

Q: How safe is Ireland?

Ireland is generally quite safe for travelers. Violent crime rates are low throughout the country. Petty crime and theft are more common in tourist-heavy areas so be sure to stay vigilant and keep any valuables close and out of sight by using pickpocket-proof clothing.

If you’re renting a car, make sure to keep it locked whenever it’s unattended and keep any personal belongings out of view. Secure parking lots and structures are your best bet for parking when available.

Q: How long can a tourist stay in Ireland?

Most tourist visas will allow you to stay in Ireland for up to 90 days without engaging in any professional activity during your stay.

Q: Do I need an Ireland travel visa?

Travelers from the United States, Australia, Canada, and numerous other countries do not need a visa to visit Ireland for a period of fewer than 90 days.

It’s recommended to view your country’s Ireland International Travel Information page for the most up-to-date information on entry and exit requirements. You can also contact the Consulate General of Ireland.

Q: Where is Ireland?

Ireland is an island in northwestern Europe.

Q: Are credit cards accepted in Ireland?

Credit cards are widely accepted around Ireland, though it is always wise to carry some cash for smaller establishments and in case of emergency.

Q: Can you drink the tap water in Ireland?

In major cities, you can usually drink tap water, though in rural areas you may want to stick with filtered water.

Q: What is the local currency in Ireland?

The Republic of Ireland uses the Euro while Northern Ireland uses the British Pound.

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