The island of Ireland sits on the westernmost point in Europe. It is not very big, so a two-week visit can take you to its major sites and many off the beaten track. When you arrive in the capital, Dublin, the city offers you historical, cultural and nightlife excitement. You could easily while away your time in the city and surrounding areas. Nearby to Dublin is Newgrange, a 5000-year-old passage tomb with an exciting secret, in the Boyne Valley. The Boyne River runs by the Hill of Tara, the former seat of the High Kings of Ireland in the time of legend and mythology: the Tuatha Dé Danann.
Ireland has several major cities and innumerable towns and villages, each with their own flavour. Each part of the island is different, from Atlantic-beaten cliffs, to the Giants Causeway, to ancient Castles and the best seafood in picturesque fishing villages on the south coast. There are a wealth of Ireland travel articles to help you choose how you want to spend your time. The west coast is rich in natural spas and baths. Many spas produce their own organic products derived from the Atlantic seaweed. End every day with a relaxing pint of Guinness or glass of Irish whiskey; triple distilled, it is the finest you’ll taste.
Ireland Travel Blog and Holiday Tips:
- Local crime and safety: Pick pocketing and petty crimes do occur. They are particularly frequent in crowded areas visited by tourists. Violent crimes are fairly rare but they do occur in larger cities. Use your usual common sense like avoid unlit areas at night and secluded places where you could be targeted. Keep your extra cash and original documents (like your passport) locked away in your hotel room safe. Carry only the amount of cash you need for the day and a copy of your passport and medical insurance just in case.
- Vaccines: Get your regular booster shots before travelling to Ireland, just to play it safe. If you have not been vaccinated against Hepatitis B, Measles and flu (if you visit during flu season).
- Food and drink: Make sure that all your meals are served fully cooked and hot (not room temperature). Avoid any risk of an upset stomach by only drinking bottled beverages (including water). If you eat any fresh produce, make sure that it has been washed properly or you can peel the skin off altogether to be safe.
- Animals and insects: Some areas (outdoors) may leave you exposed to various animals and insects. Tick bites can result in Lyme Disease while a dog bite could lead to rabies. Rabies vaccines are recommended if you intend on spending time exploring your natural surroundings. They are also recommended for children since they may receive a bite and fail to mention it to anyone.
- Medical and insurance: Healthcare in Ireland is of the highest standard and you are in very good hands if you do fall ill or are injured in an accident. As with any kind of medical treatment, if you do not have medical insurance, you could end up paying a really heavy bill. Make sure that the insurance policy you do take out is comprehensive enough to cover you in case of any kind of emergency.
- Pace yourself and interact: Ireland has loads to offer in terms of sights and attractions. However, trying to squeeze everything into a single trip will leave you exhausted. Instead, design your itinerary with care and take the time to meet and interact with some of the friendly locals. Get to know some of them and they will be more than happy to teach you about their fascinating culture.