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Ireland at a Glance

Why visit Ireland? The Irish cities and countryside are filled with jolly atmosphere, welcoming locals and cultural highlights. Start planning your travels with these tips by destination experts.

WHY VISIT IRELAND?

Ireland has a worldwide reputation for its rich cultural heritage and stunning green landscapes. The real beauty of this island is that it has stood the test of time and is sure to enchant you too. 

Imagine driving around rolling hills, stopping at mysterious castle ruins, walking along high sea cliffs, and learning about Irish history at monuments older than the Pyramids of Giza. Taste the country’s favourite drinks, whiskey and beer, visit villages with timeless charms and chat with the friendly locals.

This is what awaits you in Ireland!



If you're a nature lover, hiker or photographer, you won’t want to miss the coastal sceneries and mountains of Ireland. 

Popular sights include the lunar-like landscapes of the Burren, the stunning Cliffs of Moher and the famous Ring of Kerry drive. You’ll love to find the Stone Age tombs and crosses dotted around the country and visit the secluded Aran Islands and Skellig Islands, among many others.

As for city life, the Irish capital, Dublin, and Northern Irish capital, Belfast, boast a vibrant cultural life and a variety of worthwhile attractions. This includes award-winning museums, such as the Titanic Belfast, and historic sites, such as Trinity College. And don’t miss truly Irish experiences such as the Guinness Storehouse.

On the west and south coast respectively, Galway and Cork will allow you to immerse yourself in Irish culture. Roam the high streets, listen to live traditional music and taste the local ale.

Thanks to its mild climate and fantastic landscapes, Ireland is an ideal destination for a road trip all year round.

Read below for useful travel information about Ireland, such as weather, sample itineraries and more. You can also browse our Ireland Travel Guide to learn more about attractions and useful information.

HOW TO GET TO IRELAND

All Nordic Visitor tours in Ireland start and end in Dublin, Ireland’s capital city. Dublin Airport is serviced by a large number of airlines including: Aer Lingus, American Airlines, British Airways, Delta, and Emirates, among others.

In total Ireland has 10 airports, with the three main international ports being: Dublin, Cork and Shannon. You can of course customise your package to start from elsewhere if you wish. Just get in touch so we can help! 

GETTING AROUND IN IRELAND

Ireland really lends itself to a road trip and we recommend you opt for a self-drive tour for that reason.

The varied landscapes offer wonderful scenery for any journey. Just keep in mind that driving is done on the left side of the road. You can learn more about driving in Ireland in our travel guide.



Within Dublin, it’s easy to navigate by foot. If you prefer a bus, tram or taxi, here’s what you need to know:

Public transport is provided by Dublin Bus, Luas (tram) and DART (train). You can purchase single or return fares in the bus, but drivers don’t issue change, so be prepared with the exact amount. For the tram or train, you can purchase from ticket vending machines. 

The main taxi company in Dublin is City Cabs. You can call a taxi to your location or go to a taxi queue at Upper O’Connell Street just south of Parnell Square or at College Green opposite the Trinity College entrance. We recommend having cash available as not all taxis accept credit cards.

Travelling between Dublin and Dublin Airport

The city of Dublin has a great public transit system linking Dublin Airport and its city centre.

The Airlink Express bus (services 747 and 757) runs 7 days a week, operating between 4.45am and 12.30am. The 747 heads to Heuston Rail station, while the 757 serves Camden Street. They depart up to every 10 minutes, taking about 30 minutes to make the journey. 

The Aircoach bus (service 700) operates between the airport and Trinity College / Grafton Street. There are departures every 15 or 30 minutes and the average journey time of half an hour. 

Single fares for both of these are similar and can be purchased online, from kiosks or directly from the driver.  

Nordic Visitor does offer you the option to book a private transfer from your hotel to Dublin Airport upon departure. This is an easy and comfortable way to travel.



WHEN TO VISIT & WEATHER

There really isn’t a bad time to visit Ireland, but tours with Nordic Visitor are available from April until October so you can take advantage of the best weather of the year.

For the most sunshine hours, come in June, July or August. If you'd rather have a quieter time at popular attractions, visit in April, May, September or October.

As for the weather, while the climate in Ireland is variable, it's nothing what you would call extreme. But, you should keep in mind that weather conditions are known to change quickly and often in all regions of Ireland. 

The wettest months are December and January. April is the driest month generally but in many southern parts, June is the driest. 

And what should you pack for your trip around Ireland? In Ireland, it's best to be ready for any weather. That means that no matter the season, you need a warm jumper or fleece, a waterproof jacket and good walking shoes or boots for all sorts of terrain.

Prepare for your trip to Ireland by reading or useful packing guide filled with local tips. 

TOP THINGS TO SEE AND DO

There are countless things to see all around Ireland and Northern Ireland. We've compiled our favourite highlights for you below: 

Ireland also offers a wide range of cultural and nature-based activities. Why not try one of these popular activities below?

Food & culture

  • Taste Irish whiskey at one of the many distilleries
  • Sample traditional Irish cuisine, such as seafood, stew and potato cakes
  • Learn about Gaelic culture in open-air museums and small Irish villages
  • Visit ancient castles to discover the former life of the Irish clans
  • Trace the starting journey of the Titanic from Belfast to Cobh

Nature

  • Stroll along the dramatic beaches of Ireland's west coast
  • Take in the scenic points of the Wild Atlantic Way
  • Sail to the Aran Islands or Skellig Islands
  • Lace up your boots and hike the beautiful mountains in Wicklow
  • Walk along the glens of Northern Ireland



POPULAR ITINERARIES

You can stay in Ireland for as long as you want, and Nordic Visitor offers a range of flexible itineraries so you can choose what’s best for you. All these Irish itineraries are easy to customise so you can stay longer or enjoy different optional activities along the way.  

If you would like to include more activities into your holiday, we recommend booking a package that includes more time at each overnight location (for example, with two or more nights at the same accommodation). You can also send a us a request to customise a tour.

To help you make the most of your time in Ireland, see the helpful itinerary suggestions below. They all fall under the following themes: 

Self-drive tours / Castles / Countryside & Nature / Culture & History / Irish Heritage

6-8 days: Start in Dublin before heading west to Galway. You’ll see the Cliffs of Moher and spend time driving along the Ring of Kerry. You’ll then return to Dublin via the famous Blarney Castle.

10 days: Similarly to the week-long itineraries, start in Dublin, but then add the Aran Islands and maybe even the famous Skellig Islands to your trip. You could head north to Donegal and drive the Wild Atlantic Way route along the west coast.

14 days: Start in Dublin but then dive deeper into the culture and landscape of Ireland. See more stops along the scenic Wild Atlantic Way route. Or tour the entire island by discovering Northern Ireland too, including the stunning Giant's Causeway.

17+ days: You could do our grand tour of Ireland, including Northern Ireland and the must-see stops of the Wild Atlantic Way. Or tailor existing itineraries by spending more time in the locations that interests you most. 

Scotland and Ireland combination tours

With Nordic Visitor, you could take on 2 road trips of a lifetime in 1 go. We offer combination tours of Scotland and Ireland to give you a chance to experience both these Celtic nations at once.

Scotland and Ireland complement each other so well thanks to their shared heritage, history and cultures. Travel to both to see what makes them similar and what makes them unique.



We recommend a minimum of 10 days for this, so you can have enough time to get a taste of both countries. Spend the first 4 to 10 days driving around the rugged Highlands and islands of Scotland. Then follow that up with another road trip around Ireland to take in all the jaw-dropping coastal landscapes and historic landmarks.

As Nordic Visitor specialises in both these fantastic destinations, we can offer tailor-made itineraries that combine the best of both. Make your dream Celtic holiday a reality!

Need more help with your Ireland itinerary? Get in touch with us to start planning your trip.

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