Ireland is perfectly sized country with diverse breathtaking landscapes and dynamic cities, which hide thousands of years old culture and history. Green hills, gorgeous cliffs and coastlines dotted with numerous charming castles and villages will inspire you with their breathtaking beauty. From Celtic myths to the lives of brave patriots, Ireland is a country where stories come alive. The bustling streets of Dublin and its gorgeous west coast will make you feel as if you have come to the land of your dreams. Numerous festivals and a rich variety of arts and cultural activities including world-renowned museums and art galleries make Ireland even more interesting. Not to mention their traditional pubs and music, which make the everyday life in Ireland something unique and worth experiencing.
If you love a good party, Ireland is the place to visit. Catch the Irish spirit and join the celebrations that take place the whole year round. There are over 400 music, food, literary, Celtic and film festivals, including the most notable ones, such as the Cork Sailing Festival, the Galway Arts Festival and St. Patrick’s Day Festivals. This one has turned into a mass celebration of Irish culture all over the world. It takes place on or around March 17 and many people wear an item of green clothing on the day. Although you may probably join the celebration of St. Patrick’s Day in your country, do not miss the opportunity to experience the real Irish celebration of this national holiday – Ireland on St. Patrick’s Day is unlike anywhere else in the world.
Irish are considered to be among the friendliest nations in the world and if you want to experience the authentic Irish hospitality, look no further than a local Irish pub. Pubs are a basic part of the Irish social scene; let it be in rural villages or busy Dublin, here you can feel the pulse of Ireland.
The pubs have a reputation for delicious stouts and lagers, and friendly patrons. Many of them feature live music – both traditional and modern – as well as hearty fare such as beef and Guinness pie. Some pubs are taking their menu offerings to new taste-tempting heights, providing customers with fine dining to accompany their beloved pints. Ireland’s oldest pub is Brazen Head in Dublin, dating back to 1198. Its historical value and reputation as one of Dublin's best Irish music venues make it a must-visit while there.
Over 30,000 castles and ruins are sprinkled around the Irish landscape. Many of these are medieval in origin, dating from the 11th to the 15th century. What they all have in common is their romantic magical feel. Cahir, Kilkenny and Dunguaire Castles all evoke magical visions of fair maidens, brave kings and frightful dungeons. Blarney Castle in County Cork, which is one of the most visited castles in Ireland is famous for the Blarney Stone – legend states that if you kiss the Blarney Stone, you’ll receive the gift of eternal eloquence. Therefore visitors literally bend over backwards to plant a smooch on this fabled rock set into the castle’s wall. Other famous castles are Malahide Castle, Ross Castle and Donegal Castle. There are also some castles which you can rent, if you want to treat yourself like a royalty for a while.
The Guinness Storehouse is Ireland’s most popular tourist attraction. Located in the heart of the St. James's Gate Brewery in the heart of Dublin, it's the home of Guinness, the Black Stuff, which is how Guinness often referred to. The tour of Guinness Storehouse, which welcomes over 1 million visitors each year, begins at the bottom of the world's largest pint glass and continues up through seven floors filled with interactive experiences that fuse the long brewing heritage with Ireland's rich history. Brewing over 3 million pints daily, the Guinness Storehouse gives a behind-the-scenes look into their thirst-quenching enterprise.
Ireland’s capital city, Dublin, is an essential part of any visit to the country. Most of its attractions can be found within a relatively compact area, on either side of Liffey River, which divides the city between north and south. Top attractions include: the Guinees Store house, where you discover the process of making Guinness, Kilmainham Gaol, a must for history buffs, as it explains the story of Irish history, Trinity College, best known for the Book of Kells, Phoenix Park, the largest urban enclosed park in Europe, with more than twice the size of New York’s Central Park and home to Dublin zoo, National Gallery of Ireland, including the collection of some 2,500 paintings and about 10,000 other works in various forms and St. Patrick’s Cathedral, which is Ireland’s largest church. Of course no trip to Dublin would be complete without an authentic jar of Guinness in a traditional Irish pub, and there are numerous places where you can do this, including the famous Temple Bar and Ireland's oldest pub, The Brazen Head.
The Cliffs of Moher are Ireland’s most visited natural attraction. Along Ireland's 2500km-long coastal drive, which attracts up to one million visitors every year, the entirely vertical Cliffs of Moher in County Clare rise to a dramatic height of 203m (666ft). On a clear day, the Aran Islands and Galway Bay, as well as the Twelve Pins and the Maum Turk mountains in Connemara, Loop Head to the south and the Dingle Peninsula and Blasket Islands in Kerry can be seen. O’Brien’s Tower stands near the highest point and has served as a viewing point for visitors for hundreds of years.
The Rock of Cashel (Carraig Phádraig), more formally St. Patrick's Rock, is also known as Cashel of the Kings. Reputedly, this is the site of the conversion of Aenghus the King of Munster by St. Patrick in the 5th century AD. Towering over the town from its perch on a 200-foot high outcrop of limestone, this impressive stonewalls enclose a round tower, a gothic cathedral, a 12th Romanesque chapel, high crosses and other structures. The complex is unique and considered one of the most remarkable collections of Celtic art and medieval architecture in Europe." The Rock is also the setting of the fictional "Sister Fidelma Mysteries" medieval whodunits from Peter Tremayne.
Tullamore is a typical bustling Irish town in the Midlands of Ireland, known for Tullamore Dew, the first triple distilled and triple blended Irish whiskey, which was produced here. Today, The D.E. Williams Distillery, which was to become one of Ireland’s most successful and famous distilleries, has been turned into a visitor centre, to explain the story of this legendary Irish whiskey. The tour shows you the steps of the artisan craft of whiskey making and by combines audio-visual media makes your visit an unforgettable experience. What is more, at the end everyone gets a change to taste some whiskey.
There is simply too much to visit and do here that the opening lines of this text allow us to mention, so take it as a trace of a british humour (which only they seem to properly understand) and turn on to the next page.
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