A small country with a big reputation, helped along by an breathtaking ancient landscape and fascinating, friendly people, whose lyrical nature is expressed in the warmth of their welcome. Ireland is out-of-this-world beautiful. This kind of beautiful that will make everything else pale in comparison, for the rest of your life. The kind of beautiful that will change you. Honestly, Ireland is so beautiful it’ll make you briefly believe that nothing will ever be bad again. So you should probably just go already.
1. From the Cliffs of Moher on a clear day one can see 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. O’Brien’s Tower stands near the highest point and has served as a viewing point for visitors for hundreds of years. Once you’ve walked right up to the sheer drop of the Cliffs of Moher, every other vista is just like, eh.
2. You can set off on week-long trek along the Dingle Way at the Blennerville Windmill. From walking in the foothills of Slieve Mish to crossing the shoulder of Mount Brandon, from the crashing waves of the Atlantic at Slea Head to the tranquil setting of pastoral farmland and on to lonesome strands of golden beaches on the Maharess. It never takes long before a turn in the path reveals a dramatic change of scenery.
3. The mystical & unspoilt region of Ireland that has attracted visitors for hundreds of years. Its spectacular beauty is beyond question and it is a natural centre for outdoor pursuits. The Ring of Kerry can be explored by foot, bike, or car, but no matter how you’re travelling it, you’ll want to set aside plenty of time for stopping and gaping.
4. The Birr Castle gardens are a veritable wonderland.
5. The dramatic sight has inspired legends of giants striding over the sea to Scotland. The basalt columns of Giant’s Causeway are so perfectly interlocking, you’ll find yourself tempted to believe in the legend behind it: that ancient giants built it.
6. This beautiful avenue of beech trees was planted by the Stuart family in the eighteenth century. While you’re in Northern Ireland, take a walk through the Dark Hedges and feel the protection of its dreamy canopy.
7. Drunk tourists and college kids aside, Dublin’s cobblestone streets are truly a sight at night.
8. And don’t forget about Adare, with its ivy-lined thatched roof homes!
9. A spectacular group of Medieval buildings set on an outcrop of limestone in the Golden Vale including the 12th century round tower, High Cross and Romanesque Chapel, 13th century Gothic cathedral, 15th century Castle and the restored Hall of the Vicars Choral. Attractions include an audio-visual show and exhibitions. The Rock of Cashel and its scattered headstones is in the middle of a meadow so green you’ll think it’s fake.
10. An outstanding Cistercian abbey founded in the second half of the 12th century. The church with its Romanesque details dates from this period. Jerpoint Abbey in County Kilkenny will give you a deep sense of history.