Dublin Or Belfast: Which City Is Better?

Dublin or Belfast? Two cities come to mind when thinking of visiting Ireland.  Even if it is generally known that they are in two different countries, most still couldn’t help but compare. These capital cities are in the same Emerald Isle, after all. However, as tempting as it is to visit both cities and soak up their cultures, travelers usually had to pick just one. 

Dublin Or Belfast: Introduction 

Dublin or Belfast infographics

Dublin

With a Celtic name that meant “Black Pool”, Dublin has quite a colorful, yet tumultuous history. From being an important Viking Town to becoming a place that has witnessed war and conflict for centuries, Dublin has come a long way.

It is now known as a UNESCO City of Literature and twice voted as Europe’s friendliest city.

As the capital of the Republic of Ireland, it is the center of business, culture, and political affairs in the country. With its reliable transport system, Dublin is the ideal base for exploring the rest of Ireland, known for its dramatic and unforgettable scenery.

The city itself is worth exploring, with its many museums, green spaces, historic buildings, and thriving pub culture. A diverse mix of modern and traditional, Dublin has something for everyone.

Belfast

From being Linenopolis in the 1800s to building the Titanic, to being one of the most dangerous places in the world for three decades – Belfast has quite a colorful history.

Today, the Northern Ireland capital is a fast-growing technology and entertainment hub. It has also attracted more visitors because it is the perfect base to explore the stunning landscapes and coastal scenery of Northern Ireland. 

With its thriving arts, culture, and restaurant scene juxtaposed with historic buildings and lots of green spaces, Belfast is a fascinating city to explore. It has gone a long way and is now a must-visit city on the island of Ireland. 

Dublin Or Belfast: Key Facts

Dublin vs Belfast

Dublin

Country: Republic of Ireland 

Official Language: English, Irish Gaelic 

Size:  45.5 squares miles (117.8 sq km2)

Population: 1,242,000 (2021)

Currency: Euro 

Electricity: 220 v/ 3-prong outlet

Belfast

Country: Northern Ireland 

Official Language: English 

Size: 44.4 square miles (115 km2)

Population: 634,594 (2021)

Currency: Great British Pound

Electricity: 220 v/ 3-prong outlet

Dublin Or Belfast: How To Get There

dublin versus belfast

Dublin

Dublin has one major airport, Dublin Airport which has flights coming in and out from Europe, the UK, and from around the world. The capital city of Ireland may also be reached by a combination of bus, car, ferry or train if coming from nearby islands or countries. 

By plane – There are direct flights to Dublin from North America, the UK, Europe, and Asian cities like Beijing, Seoul, and Tokyo. From the airport, travelers may board a bus, shuttle, taxi, or Uber to get to the city center. 

By ferry – if coming from the UK or Western Europe, visitors may drive, rude a bus or train to a ferry port in France or the UK. From there, they can board a ferry (Stena Line and Irish Ferries) to reach Dublin Port. 

By train – if traveling within the island of Ireland (including Northern Ireland), Dublin is easily reached by train via Irish Rail (Iarnród Éireann), InterRail, and Northern Ireland Railways. 

By bus – Dublin may also be reached by bus if coming from within the island of Ireland and the UK. Bus services such as  Eurolines (coming from the UK),  Bus Eireann (within Ireland), and Ulsterbus (from Northern Ireland)

By car – Dublin is easily reachable by car from different parts of the island. However, please check the rental agreement first as it may be against the terms especially if coming from another country such as Northern Ireland.

Belfast

There are many ways for travelers and visitors to reach  Belfast. The city is connected to various transport networks and has two airports: Belfast International Airport and George Best City Airport. Whether you’re coming from within the island of Ireland, the UK, Europe, or other parts of the world, here’s how to get to Belfast: 

By Plane –  Both airports that service Belfast has flights coming in from both domestic and international destinations. Most direct flights come from the UK, Western Europe. If a visitor’s country of origin does not have a direct flight to Belfast, there are connecting flights from other UK cities such as Edinburgh, Glasgow (Scotland), London, and Manchester (England). The best connecting flight, however, is from Dublin. 

Both Belfast International Airport, the airport, and George Best City Airport have a shuttle bus (Airport 300 service), taxi, or private transfer service to get to the city center. 

By Ferry – Two main ferry companies regularly travel to Belfast: Stena Line and P&O Ferries. These are convenient if going to Belfast from Cairnryan (Scotland), the Isle of Man. and Liverpool (England). 

By Train – if coming from within the island of Ireland, Belfast is easily reached by train. There are regular schedules from cities like Cork, Dublin, Galway, and Limerick. If traveling by Irish Rail, book in advance to avail of discounts. 

By Bus – There are regular coach connections if going to Belfast from within Ireland or from other parts of the UK.  If coming from England, Scotland or Wales, check out National Express for schedules of bus and ferry transport. 

By Car – For visitors to Belfast who would rather travel by car, the Northern Ireland capital is easily reached in 2 to under 5 hours from Derry/Londonderry,   Dublin, or Cork. 

Dublin vs Belfast: Things To Do

What is Dublin known for?

trinity college dublin
Long Room, Trinity College

What is Belfast known for?

Belfast Castle
Belfast Castle

Dublin versus Belfast: Which is more expensive?

Dublin

Beer –  .5 L – 5.50 €

Accommodations (starts at)

  • Budget – 60 €
  • Mid – 110 €
  • Luxury – 170 €

Restaurants (per person) 

  • Budget – 15 €
  • Mid – 35 €
  • Luxury – 80 €

Transportation

  • Bus, train, tram (pass / Leap card) –  10 € (1 day) 19.50 € (3 days) 40 € (7 days) 
  • Taxi – 4 € (start) 1.50 € (per 1 km)

Belfast

Beer –  .5 L – 4.50 £

Accommodations (per night)

  • Budget – 46 £
  • Mid – 74  £
  • Luxury –  125 £

Restaurants (per person)

  • Budget –  12 £
  • Mid –  23 £
  • Luxury –  34 £

Transportation 

  • Metro (pass / Smartcard) – 3.50 £ (day) 15 £ (1 week) 55 £ (1 month) 
  • Taxi –  3.10 £ (start) 1 £ (per 1 km)

Which is better Dublin or Belfast? 

Dublin is easier to reach, with many direct flights and connections, as well as a bigger transport system to get around in.  People will argue, however, that even with the limited ways to get to the city, Belfast is a worthy place to visit.

The Northern Ireland city is compact, walkable, and closer to the country’s iconic attractions such as the Giant’s Causeway. It is also much cheaper in Belfast than in Dublin. 

When considering between the two capital cities, it is more a matter of lifestyle and preference than which one is deemed better than the other. Those who prefer a more cosmopolitan vibe with plenty of space to get around in, a variety of attractions, and a thriving pub scene will love Dublin.

Meanwhile, people who are a bit more traditional and enjoy walking will appreciate the easy-to-navigate streets and neighborhoods of Belfast. One can walk from one end of the city to the other in 30 minutes while passing most of the city’s top attractions. 

Dublin is for travelers who have more time allotted for their trip to the island of Ireland. Belfast, on the other hand, is best for those who may only have a few days but want to see the best that this part of Ireland has to offer. 

Each has a distinct charm and character. Whether it’s Dublin or Belfast, the better choice is the city that best suits one’s need and preference.

 

Counties of Ireland Guide And Map

The Irish counties have remained virtually unchanged for around 400 years since the English monarchy divided Ireland. In the olden times, the division was by provinces, each governed by a king. These provinces were full of beans, their borders changing all the time. 

Today, these Irish provinces mean Leinster, Ulster, Munster, and Connaught. Historically, though, Ireland had more than 4 provinces. Others included Breifne between Ulster and Connaught, Oriel around county Armagh, and Meath which is the northern half of Leinster. 

A partition of Ireland into two self-governing polities was made in 1921. The county became one of the basic land divisions used, along with its boroughs. The Republic of Ireland is divided into 26 counties while Northern Ireland comprises 6 counties. 

Read on to learn more about these counties in Ireland and their top attractions.

Counties of Ireland Map

counties in ireland

Irish Counties List Overview

Here’s an overview of the counties of Ireland, their county town, native name, and province. 

CountyNative nameCounty townMost
populous
city/town
Province
AntrimAontroim
(Contae Aontroma)
BallymenaBelfast (part)Ulster
ArmaghArd Mhacha
(Contae Ard Mhacha)
ArmaghCraigavonUlster
CarlowCeatharlach
(Contae Cheatharlach)
CarlowCarlowLeinster
CavanAn Cabhán
(Contae an Chabháin)
CavanCavanUlster
ClareAn Clár
(Contae an Chláir)
EnnisEnnisMunster
CorkCorcaigh
(Contae Chorcaí)
CorkCorkMunster
DonegalDún na nGall
(Contae Dhún na nGall)
LiffordLetterkennyUlster
DownAn Dún
(Contae an Dúin)
DownpatrickBelfast (part)Ulster
DublinBaile Átha Cliath
(Contae Bhaile Átha Cliath)
DublinDublinLeinster
FermanaghFear Manach
(Contae Fhear Manach)
EnniskillenEnniskillenUlster
GalwayGaillimh
(Contae na Gaillimhe)
GalwayGalwayConnacht
KerryCiarraí
(Contae Chiarraí)
TraleeTraleeMunster
KildareCill Dara
(Contae Chill Dara)
NaasNewbridgeLeinster
KilkennyCill Chainnigh
(Contae Chill Chainnigh)
KilkennyKilkennyLeinster
LaoisLaois
(Contae Laoise)
PortlaoisePortlaoiseLeinster
LeitrimLiatroim
(Contae Liatroma)
Carrick-on-ShannonCarrick-on-ShannonConnacht
LimerickLuimneach
(Contae Luimnigh)
LimerickLimerickMunster
Londonderry[nb 3]Doire
(Contae Dhoire)
ColeraineDerry[nb 3]Ulster
LongfordAn Longfort
(Contae an Longfoirt)
LongfordLongfordLeinster
Louth
(Contae Lú)
DundalkDroghedaLeinster
MayoMaigh Eo
(Contae Mhaigh Eo)
CastlebarCastlebarConnacht
MeathAn Mhí
(Contae na Mí)
Navan
(formerly Trim)
NavanLeinster
MonaghanMuineachán
(Contae Mhuineacháin)
MonaghanMonaghanUlster
OffalyUíbh Fhailí
(Contae Uíbh Fhailí)
Tullamore (formerly
Philipstown)
TullamoreLeinster
RoscommonRos Comáin
(Contae Ros Comáin)
RoscommonRoscommonConnacht
SligoSligeach
(Contae Shligigh)
SligoSligoConnacht
TipperaryTiobraid Árann
(Contae Thiobraid Árann)
Nenagh (formerly Clonmel
& Cashel)
ClonmelMunster
TyroneTír Eoghain
(Contae Thír Eoghain)
OmaghOmaghUlster
WaterfordPort Láirge
(Contae Phort Láirge)
WaterfordWaterfordMunster
WestmeathAn Iarmhí
(Contae na hIarmhí)
MullingarAthloneLeinster
WexfordLoch Garman
(Contae Loch Garman)
WexfordWexfordLeinster
WicklowCill Mhantáin
(Contae Chill Mhantáin)
WicklowBrayLeinster

Counties in the Republic of Ireland

counties of ireland map

The 26-county Irish state officially describes the Republic of Ireland which is completely independent from England as well as Northern Ireland. These counties were established under English rule around four centuries ago, but the 1921 Anglo-Irish Treaty created the official list that we know today.

Here’s an overview of the Republic of Ireland’s 26 counties under their respective provinces.

Counties in Leinster Province

Carlow

The County Carlow in the southeast of Ireland is rich in agriculture and industry, with cultural and recreational facilities for both young and old. 

In the early 1800s, Carlow was such a stronghold for agriculture that it earned the nickname the “scallion eaters.” It is also where the first sugar beet factory in Ireland was located.

The name “Carlow” is thought to originate from the old Irish place called “Ceatharlach,” which means “city on the lakes” or “four lakes.” But depending on who you listen to, “Carlow” could also mean “a place of cattle.” 

Carlow is known for the famous prehistoric site, Browneshill Dolmen, which is a megalithic portal tomb. 

Points of Interest in County Carlow:

  • Carlow Castle
  • Huntington Castle 
  • Carlow Cathedral 
  • Duckett’s Groove
  • Brownshill Dormen

Dublin

The Vikings, arriving in Ireland in 800 AD, called the spot where the rivers Poddle and Liffey meet “Dubh Linn” or “black pool.” It is the origin of the name Dublin. It is also said to derive from “hurdled fort.” 

County Dublin is known for the city of Dublin, the Irish capital which is a UNESCO City of Literature.

Kildare

To the west of Dublin lies County Kildare, home of the powerful Fitzgerald family. In its early days, Kildare was known as the “church of the oak.” 

Known as the equine county of Ireland, Kildare houses some of the world’s most renowned racecourses like the Curragh, Punchestown, and Naas.

Kilkenny

County Kilkenny in southeastern Ireland is noted for its medieval monastic ruins such as Kells Priory, the 12th-century Augustinian complex surrounded by fortified walls. 

Kilkenny was known as the “church of Cainnech,” in honor of St. Cainnech who converted the county to Christianity in the year 597. 

People from Kilkenny are often called “Cats,” after the fabled pair of Kilkenny cats which, for the Kilkenny people, are a positive symbol of tenacity and fighting spirit.

Laois

Formerly known as Queen’s County in honor of Queen Mary (“Bloody Mary”), the modern County Laois takes its name from the medieval kingdom of Loígis. It has also been known as County Leix.

The Laois name is also said to come from the “people of Lugaid Laigne,” after a chieftain called Lugaid.

County Laois is in the south of the Midlands Region, 85km from Dublin. Laois is rich in historical sites and ancient ruins. 

Longford

County Longford in Ireland’s East Coast and Midlands was originally known as “the port.” Previously considered part of Connacht,  County Longford was added to Leinster by King James I in 1608.

Like many Irish counties, Longford has a number of castles and churches, of which St. Mel’s Cathedral is the most famous. St. Mel’s Cathedral is a Neoclassical building that dates as far back as 1840.

Louth

The smallest county in Ireland, County Louth is colloquially known as “the Wee County.” The name “Louth” was taken after the ancient Irish God Lugh.

County Louth is home to a number of historic sites, including religious sites at Monasterboice, Mellifont Abbey, and the St. Mary Magdalene Dominican Friary.

Meath

County Meath, just north of Dublin, is known for its archaeological sites, especially Brú na Bóinne in the Boyne Valley. 

County Meath is nicknamed “The Royal County,” thanks to its history as the seat of the High King of Ireland. The name “Meath” is taken after the historic Kingdom of Meath, from “Midhe” which means “middle” or “center.”

Offaly

County Offaly is part of the Midlands Region,  formed after the Tudor plantations of Laois and Offaly in an expansion attempt of the English Crown in Ireland. 

County Offaly derives its name from the Gaelic kingdom called Uí Failghe. It was formerly known as King’s County. 

Offaly is known for its extensive bog and peatlands. Some of the famous ones are the Boora Bog, Clara Bog, Raheenmore Bog, and the Bog of Allen which extends into four other counties.

Westmeath

Similar to its neighbor, County Meath, Westmeath literally means “west middle.” Its name is also derived from An Lar Mhi, Gaelic for the west of Meath. 

County Westmeath was originally part of the historic Kingdom of Meath. 

Westmeath is sometimes called “The Lake County” because of its many lakes, streams, and other waterways. Its county town, Mullingar, is famous for its high-quality veal and beef. 

Wexford

A coastal county in southeastern Ireland, Wexford derives its name from the Norse meaning “fjord of the mud flats.”

County Wexford was among the first in Ireland to be Christianized, occurring in the early 5th century. 

Wexford is famous for its golden beaches like the Blue Flag Beaches, Curracloe Beach with its rolling dunes, and Rosslare Beach which is a popular water sports hub.

Wicklow

County Wicklow in the south of Dublin is nicknamed the “Garden of Ireland.” Its name derives from Víkingaló, which is the Old Norse for “Vikings’ meadow.” 

County Wicklow is noted for its mountains, Irish Sea coastline, country estates, and the Wicklow Way. Wicklow Mountains National Park is home to glacial lakes, rivers, and Glendalough, a forested valley where the remains of an early medieval monastic settlement are found.

Counties in Munster Province

Clare

County Clare in western Ireland has terrain that ranges from rolling countryside to craggy Atlantic coastline. It is known for the world-famous Cliffs of Moher and the Burren, one of the ancient single-chamber megalithic tombs called dolmen.

 A literal translation of its name could mean “level piece of land,” but County Clare might also be named after the Norman lord of Thomond, Thomas de Clare.

Cork

County Cork, covering much of Ireland’s southwest, is dubbed the “rebel county.” King Henry VII of England gave it the name for its support of Perkin Warbeck in a futile attempt at a rebellion in 1491.

Cork is famed for the 15th-century Blarney Castle which houses the Blarney Stone, said to give the “gift of the gab” or eloquence to those who kiss it. 

County Cork is Ireland’s largest county, deriving its name from the meaning for “swamp.” Its administrative capital, the city of Cork, is known as Ireland’s food capital.

Kerry

Nicknamed “the Kingdom,” County Kerry in the peninsular southwest region of Ireland is known for its striking terrain, rugged coastline, and mountains. It houses the famous Ring of Kerry, as well as Torc Waterfall and Torc Mountain.

The county name is from the ancient Irish Ciarraighe or Ciarraí which means the “people of Ciar.” In Old Irish, the word “Ciar” meant dark brown or black, which is still used in modern Irish to describe a dark complexion. It was the name of the pre-Gaelic tribe who lived in part of the present county, which was founded by the legendary Ciar, son of Fergus mac Róich. 

Limerick

Limerick, in Ireland’s southwest, is a beautiful county although its name is derived from “bare spot” or “barren  spot of land.” It is known for Irish Coffee, a brew infused with Irish whiskey, which was invented in the village of Foynes in 1943.

Limerick is home to Grange Stone Circle, Ireland’s largest stone circle, and Lough Gur, which is one of the country’s most important archaeological sites.

Tipperary

Known as the “well of the Arra,” Tipperary is sometimes referred to as The Premier County. It is known for its pastureland and horse breeding industry. Tipperary also houses the famous Rock of Cashel and Cahir Castle.

County Tipperary is in the south-central of Ireland. It was formed in 1328, making it the oldest of the Irish counties. 

Waterford

Waterford, originally called “Larag’s port,” is a maritime county located on the southeastern coast of Ireland. 

County Waterford is colloquially known as “The Déise,” after the Déise tribe that conquered the Waterford region sometime between the 4th and 8th centuries.

County Waterford is known for Waterford Crystal, a legacy of the city of Waterford’s glass-making industry from 1783 until early 2009. 

Counties in Connacht Province

Galway

County Galway, located on Ireland’s western seaboard, derives its name from the river “Gaillimh.” It became an official entity around 1569 AD.

County Galway’s capital, the city of Galway, is known as the festival capital of Ireland, thanks to its vibrant street theatre, film and fringe festivities, and fantastic food.

Leitrim

Situated in the north of Ireland, County Leitrim is one of the smaller counties in Ireland. The county is known simply as the “grey ridge,” from the Irish Liath Druim.

It is noted for its linen industry, as well as coal and iron ore mining.

Mayo

On the west coast of Ireland lies County Mayo, whose name derives from the Irish Contae Mhaigh Eo, which means “plain of the yew trees.”

Formed in 1585, County Mayo is one of the most beautiful counties in Ireland. It is home to Achill, Ireland’s largest island off the county’s west coast.

Roscommon

Roscommon, literally meaning “St. Coman’s wood,” was named after St. Coman, founder of the Roscommon monastery in the year 550.

County Roscommon is roughly in the center of Ireland. It is known for sheep farming, which is celebrated annually with the Roscommon Lamb Festival. The county is home to a lot of castles and ruins, lakes, forests, and Ireland’s largest floating waterpark. However, it is most famous for being the birthplace of Halloween.

Sligo

County Sligo in northwestern Ireland is most noted for the legacy of the renowned Irish poet, W.B. Yeats. It is also known for Benbulben Mountain, one of Ireland’s most distinctive natural landmarks.

County Sligo was officially formed in 1585, but coming into effect only after the end of the Nine Years’ War in 1603. 

Its name derives from “shelly place,” thanks to the abundance of shellfish that can be found here.

Counties in Ulster Province 

Cavan

County Cavan, known simply as “the hollow,” is home to fabulous rolling hills and lakes shaped by the last Ice Age. With all its 365 lakes, there is no running out for fishing for the whole year!

Cavan, established in 1579, is based on the historic Gaelic territory of East Breffny (Bréifne).

Donegal

Donegal is the second-largest county in Ireland, known for its castles, rugged coastline, and mountains such as the quartzite Mount Errigal. 

The county name is derived from Dún na nGall, meaning “fort of the foreigners,” which were most likely the Vikings.

County Donegal lies on the coast of the Atlantic Ocean in northwestern Ireland. It was the home of the Patron St. Colmcille or St. Columba, one of Ireland’s three patron saints, the other two being St. Brigit and the famous St. Patrick.

Donegal is often referred to as “the forgotten county,” being the least commercialized part of Ireland.

Monaghan

County Monaghan has existed since 1585 when Airgíalla’ Mac Mathghamhna rulers agreed to join the Kingdom of Ireland. The county is noted for its ancient Irish craft of  Carrickmacross Lace.

County Monaghan’s name means “hilly or bushy land” or “place of little hills,” as the county is dotted with small mountains, lakes, and forests.

Counties in Northern Ireland

counties in northern ireland map

While the historic divisions are still used today as the groundwork of local government in the Republic of Ireland, it’s a different story in Northern Ireland. The counties no longer have any actual purpose—they only serve as mere curiosities, or part of their history—and districts are used instead.

Here are the 6 counties that comprise Northern Ireland, also under the province of Ulster.

Antrim

Formed after Shane O’Neill’s rebellion, Antrim is perched right on the top of Ireland in the northeastern corner. So it’s no wonder the name “Antrim” is derived from the phrase “lone ridge” or “lone dwelling.”

County Antrim is famed for its glens which offer isolated rugged landscapes such as the Giant’s Causeway, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Antrim is also known for the whiskey-producing village of Bushmills and Portrush which is a popular seaside resort and night-life area. 

Belfast is part of the County Antrim, with the remainder being in Down.

Armagh

Known as the “orchard county,” thanks to its many apple orchards, County Armagh is notable for being the seat of St. Patrick.

The name “Armagh” comes from the Irish Contae Ard Mhacha, which translates to “Macha’s Hill.” Macha was a pagan Celtic goddess.

County Armagh, as the heartland of St. Patrick, is home to St. Patrick’s Church of Ireland Cathedral and Saint Patrick’s Roman Catholic Cathedral. It also houses Gosford Castle and Slieve Gullion.

Down

Founded in the early 16th century, County Down is home to Downpatrick and the burial place of Saint Patrick. The county takes its name from the Irish dún, meaning “fort.”

County Down is renowned for the granite Mourne Mountains, with Slieve Donard as the highest peak.

Fermanagh

Based on the territory of the dominant Maguire clan, County Fermanagh is known for its lush Lakelands, hence its name which derives from the Irish for “men from the county of the lakes.” Lough Erne is the most famous of these lakes.

The famous playwright, Samuel Beckett, was born in Fermanagh in 1906.

Derry

Country Derry derives its name from the Gaelic Doire, which translates to “oak wood” or “oak grove.” 

Bordered by the fast-flowing waters of the River Foyle, Derry is home to the Sperrin Mountains, which it shares with the County Tyrone.

The walled city of Londonderry is County Derry’s administrative capital, named the first UK City of Culture in 2013.

Tyrone

Country Tyrone is based on the Irish kingdom of Tír Eoghain, or the “Land of Eoghan,” in honor of Eogan mac Neill who founded this county.

Tyrone has spectacular landscapes and is home to a number of parks, such as Dungannon Park, Drum Manor Forest Park, and Gortin Glen Forest Park.

County Tyrone is no longer employed as an administrative division for local government. However, its strong identity remains in popular culture.

9 Best Scenic Drives In Ireland

Road trips in Ireland are the best, because each time you turn a corner in a winding road, you are met with stunning views. From short drives up Ireland’s highest peak to the longest coastal drive in the world –  the Emerald Isle is true road trip heaven. 

When in Ireland, it is a must to experience not just one but at least three of its scenic drives. One would never get enough of the rugged coasts, dramatic cliffs, majestic mountains, ancient monastic sites, and the thousands of castles.

What then, is the best way to make the most of a visit to Ireland? Rent or hire a car, download a map, have a fully charged power bank, a good camera, and drive. Where to go? Here, choose your adventure with nine of these best scenic drives in Ireland. 

9 Best Scenic Drives In Ireland

best scenic drives in Ireland

1. The Ring of Kerry

Length: 111 miles (179 km)

Travel Time: 3 to 4 hours to drive through, but spend at least 3 days to experience it. 

killarney national park
Killarney National Park

A scenic drive around the Iveragh Peninsula in southwest Ireland, the Ring of Kerry starts and ends in Killarney. One of the most popular routes in Ireland, the Ring of Kerry traverses through idyllic towns and villages, stunning mountain passes, sandy beaches, and rugged islands. 

The Ring of Kerry is not an easy road to take, as some parts are narrow or steep. Yet, it is one of those road trips in Ireland that many travelers want to tick off their bucket list. This counterclockwise route only takes a few hours to complete if you’re just driving and at least two days to explore the area.  

Points of Interest:

  • Torc Waterfall
  • Killarney National Park
  • Gap of Dunloe
  • The Rossbeigh Hill Loop Walk
  • Valentia Island 

2. Wild Atlantic Way

Length: 1553 miles (2500 km)

Travel Time: 4 to 5 days to see just portions, 1 to 3 weeks to explore

Slea Head drive
Slea Head

Rough, rugged, and spectacular, the Wild Atlantic Way is also the world’s longest signed coastal drive. The route winds along the west coast,  passing nine counties of Ireland that start in Kinsale, County Cork in the South, and ending in Inishowen, County Donegal in the north. 

Spanning 1,553 miles, a nonstop drive along this dramatic coastal route takes 32 hours. That is just several hours short of the total driving time from Washington, DC to Los Angeles in California, USA.

The entire stretch of Ireland’s Wild Atlantic Coast has over a thousand attractions and discovery points that it will take more than a few days to see everything.

To appreciate this epic drive, choose a few sections to explore within several days if pressed for time.  If possible, however, drive the entire stretch and see everything in at least three weeks.  

Points of Interest:

3. The Coastway Coast, County Antrim

Length:  130 miles (212 kilometers)

Travel Time: 5 hours drive, at least a day to explore the area

Giant’s Causeway Northern Ireland
Giant’s Causeway

Named after the Giants Causeway, this North Ireland route connects the Wild Atlantic Way to the city of Belfast.

Known as one of the best drives in Ireland, the Causeway Coast route is filled with some of Northern Ireland’s most iconic destinations. A popular stop near Ballycastle off the coastal route is the enchanting Dark Hedges, featured in Game of Thrones

The thrilling Carrick-a-Rede-Rope Bridge that crosses the ocean to a nearby rock Island is another must experience in the Causeway Coast route. The mind-blowing Giant’s Causeway is where the drive ends. Stop and walk on thousands of interlocking basalt columns, while taking in the views of the Atlantic. 

Points of Interest:

4. The Burren Loop, County Clare

Length: 100 miles (160 km)

Travel Time: 4 to 6 hours

Burren National Park
Burren National Park

Located in the dramatic limestone landscapes of County Clare, the Burren Loop is one of the truly unique road trips in Ireland.

Cruising around the Burren National Park, the 100-mile drive navigates a lopsided figure 8 route. The road passes through sceneries of huge huge karst pale grey limestone, and a variety of flora and fauna.

A UNESCO World Heritage site, the road also passes many ancient heritage sites such as castles, cairns, megalithic tombs, ring forts, and more.

Points of Interest:

5. The Inishowen 100

Length: 100 miles (160 km) 

Travel Time: 4 to 5 hours with stops

Mizen Head
Mizen Head

Spanning 100 miles, the Inishowen Scenic Drive loops around the Inishowen Peninsula, the largest in Ireland.   Those looking for nice drives in Ireland that won’t take days to explore would love the varied landscapes of this area.

From pretty coastal towns to rolling green hills, sandy beaches to dramatic cliffs, travelers are sure to stop and take in the views every few miles or so.

Some of the best things to see along the Inishowen Drive are the stunning Mamore Gap and the epic Mizen Head, which is at the end of the route and also Ireland’s northernmost part. 

Points of Interest: 

  • Fort Dunree
  • Mamore Gap
  • Glenevin Waterfall
  • Knockamany Viewpoint
  • Malin Head

6. The Boyne Valley Scenic Loop, Louth and Meath

Length: 173 miles (278 km)

Travel Time: 7 to 12 hours with stops

Brú na Bóinne ireland
Brú na Bóinne

Rich history and fantastic scenery merge in the 173 miles that it takes to traverse the Boyne Valley Scenic Loop. Passing through counties Louth and Meath, the route has a large concentration of historic sites.

Every attraction here is located close to each other and worth the stop. This journey in the eastern part is one of the best drives in Ireland.

Along with lush landscapes, travelers are treated to ancient monuments such as Newgrange, burial mounds, and castles.

Points of Interest:

7. The Slieve Gullion Forest Park Drive, County Armagh

Length: 8 miles (12.8 km)

Travel Time: 25 minutes to the top, stay awhile to enjoy the views

Cooley Peninsula
Cooley Peninsula

A portion of the longer Ring of Gullion driving/cycling route in County Armagh, the Slieve Gullion Forest Park Drive is one of the shortest scenic routes in Ireland. The narrow road goes up the Slieve Gullion, the highest peak in the county.

Recognized as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty in Armagh, the best time to drive here is during the day, especially when the sky is clear.

As the road goes on a careful ascent, the views become even more spectacular. Patchwork green fields, lush forests, and a nearby mountain all against the clear sky – the drive may be short but worth it. 

Points of Interest:

  • Ring of Gullion
  • Mourne Mountains  
  • Cooley Peninsula

8. The Copper Coast, County Waterford

Length: 100 miles (166 km)

Travel Time: 4 to 8 hours with stops

Dunhill Castle
Dunhill Castle

Not a lot knows about the Copper Coast but for those looking for more nice drives in Ireland, this is a wonderful discovery.

Located in County Waterford in the south, this scenic drive goes from Tramore to Dungarvan and stretches to a hundred miles. The drive passes through the incredible Copper Coast European Geopark, as well as sandy beaches and coves, rugged cliffs, and beautiful coastal villages.

A nonstop drive takes a few hours, but with the many attractions along the way such as Dunhill Castle and Ballydowane Bay, it is best to set aside a day to explore the Copper Coast. 

Points of Interest: 

  • Dunhill Castle
  • Clonea Strand 
  • Ballydowane Bay
  • Kilmurrin Beach
  • Dunabrattin Head

9. Lough Gill and Yeats Scenic Drive, County Sligo

Length: 115 miles (185 km)

Travel Time: 5 to 9 hours with stops 

Benbulben
Benbulben Mountain

This inspired scenic drive starts and ends in Sligo town, and probably one of the most meaningful road trips in Ireland. Aptly called the Yeats Country and Lough Gill Scenic Loop Drive, the route features stops that either inspired or were featured in W.B. Years’ works.

From the Glencar Waterfall to the Benbulben Mountain, this drive combines beaches,  Irish culture,  literary history, Irish mythology, mountains, and more scenic views.

Spanning 115 miles, the Yeats County and Lough Gill Scenic Loop Drive or Cycle is both an epic road trip and heritage trail, in one of the most awe-inspiring areas in Ireland.

Points of Interest:

  • Rosses Point
  • Benbulben Mountain
  • Lough Gill  
  • Strandhill town

 

Northern Lights in Ireland: Where, When and How

Seeing the Northern Lights or Aurora Borealis is probably among those that most people would love to witness if given the chance.

Nature’s magical light show is pretty elusive though, as it only seems in areas closer to the North Pole (or the South Pole, and it’s called Aurora Australis).

But do you know there are places in Ireland where you can see the Northern Lights? So read on to find out how to see Northern Lights in Ireland

Northern Lights in Ireland: Where, When and How

northern lights in ireland

This colorful light display is a result of the disturbance in the magnetosphere caused by solar winds.

When it appears, there are like ribbons of light swaying in the sky and you’d even hear the hum of the wind along. This is a definite must-experience if you’re in high-altitude areas close to the earth’s poles. 

When to expect Northern Lights in Ireland

There is no way anyone can predict what kind of aurora will appear, or when exactly.

However, the best times of the year to try and catch nature’s amazing lights show is during winter or spring. Plan ahead and reserve a set amount of nights when you’d go chasing the northern lights.

There’s no guarantee you’d see them on your first try but that’s part of the charm of the experience of the northern lights — the chase is an adventure in itself. 

Where can you see Northern Lights in Ireland?

aurora borealis ireland

In Ireland, with its diverse geography and proximity to the Arctic circle, it is possible to see the aurora, particularly in the North and West Coasts.

These regions have mostly unspoilt areas and no light pollution, perfect for viewing the aurora. These light shows are often seen in the northern horizon, or overhead if the place is close enough to the North Pole. 

So here are all the places in Ireland where you’d most likely encounter the elusive Northern Lights.

1. Arranmore, Donegal

Arranmore, Donegal

Accessible via a ferry ride from Burtonpoint, Arranmore Island is mostly unspoilt, and there’s no light pollution at night.

This is Donegal’s largest island and if you’re here for the northern lights, make sure you stay in the sheltered south side parts such as Ballintra, Fallagowan, Leabgarrow, or Pollawaddy.

2. Dunaff, County Donegal

Dunaff, Co. Donegal

The stunning Dunaff Head known for its beaches and mountain is situated by the Lough Swilly estuary. Its landscape provides the perfect background for the Aurora Borealis.

It is also close to towns like Claggan and Leehan, which offers accommodations, cafes, and pubs for the convenience of those going there to see ‘the lights’.

3. Dunree, Donegal

Dunree, Donegal

Dunree is best known for the Dunree Fort, a former stronghold that’s now a military museum. This fort also provides the best location to look northeast and watch out for the Northern Lights.

The views there spread across the nearby areas, free of any light obstruction making it the perfect spot to wait for the aurora borealis.

4. Mamore Gap, Donegal

 

 
 
 
 
 
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The sheltered Mamore Gap is one of the best places to see the northern lights in Ireland. It is slightly off the coast and has amazing panoramic views of the north and west horizons.

It has some interesting places where you can stay to wait for the lights, such as a Neolithic campsite and Holy Well. The place is completely free of light pollution that it’s a total blackout at night, making the sky clear for the elusive lights show.

5. Malin Head Co. Donegal

 

 
 
 
 
 
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As Ireland’s northernmost point, Malin Head offers the best chance to see the Aurora Borealis. It is located on the Inishowen peninsula, in Donegal.

Banba’s Crown is the northern tip of the head, perfect for watching the skies. There’s also the Ballyhillion’s raised beaches, which is ideal for a stroll while keeping an eye out for the northern lights.

6. Moville, Inishowen, Donegal

The picturesque Moville town is located on the eastern part of the Inishowen peninsula. The landscape here is a lot different than the rough Malin Head but just as magical once the northern lights appear. 

Overlooks Lough Foyle and has plenty of sheltered species to protect visitors from the elements while they wait for the aurora.

7. Tory Island, Donegal

Tory Island, Donegal

An island steeped in history and legend, Tory Island’s rugged landscape provides one of the most glorious sites to witness the northern lights. It is a bit difficult to reach though, and the weather can be unpredictable.

Still, chasers of the aurora take the ferry from the harbors of Bunbeg and Magheroarty to experience both the mystical lights show and one of Ireland’s most unspoiled places.

8. Rosinver, Leitrim

Apart from Donegal, Leitrim County has some great locations to see the aurora borealis, such as Rossinver. Situated on the southern shores of Lough Melvin, this tranquil fishing village provides the ideal backdrop when ‘the lights’ appear.

There are the secret waterfalls, a 9th-century grave slab, an Iron age fort, and an abbey that are amazing sites to set your camera on a long exposure.

9. Belmullet, Mayo

Belmullet town in Mayo has sandy beaches and towering cliffs perfect for watching the sky to see the northern lights.

It also has two bays — Blacksod Bay and Broadhaven Bay that are both ideal locations to wait for the aurora. The coast is a great place to either stroll around in while you wait, with its beaches and cliffs.

10. Inisturk, Mayo

Regarded as one of the most beautiful places in Ireland, Inishturk is also among the best places to watch out for the northern lights.

The sheltered eastern part of Ballyheer and Guaranty are said to be the best locations to wait for the appearance of the aurora borealis because here you can easily access the center of the island where there are zero light pollution and amazingly clear skies.

11. Mullaghmore, Sligo

Mullaghmore, Sligo

Best known as a surfing destination, the Mullaghmore in Sligo is also an ideal place to catch the northern lights.

Its dramatic cliffs offer amazing views of the western horizon with the monolithic Ben Bulben, as well as the Atlantic crashing against the rocks below.

Along with clear, unobstructed views of the sky meeting the northern horizon, this is another great spot to see the aurora borealis. 

The northern lights often appear in high-altitude places and those areas with zero light pollution. These places are often cold and dark so it’s recommended to come prepared to better experience it.

Make sure you bring a very strong torch or flashlight to help take good photos, a camera, tripod, and enough batteries to make sure you continuously capture the sky while the ‘lights’ present themselves. 


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Glamping In Northern Ireland: 7 Best Glamping Sites

Beyond the legendary Giant’s Causeway, the filming locations for Game of Thrones and Belfast, Northern Ireland are slowly becoming a go-to destination for glamping. Northern Ireland’s glamping locations guarantee waking up to the prettiest sceneries as well – whether they’re nestled within enchanting forests, at the foot of mountains, in country fields, or by the lake.

Along with the stunning locations, glamping in Northern Ireland also means staying in some of the quirkiest accommodations that truly add up to the experience. 

From transparent domes to wagons and shepherd’s huts, here are some of the best glamping locations in Northern Ireland. 

Glamping In Northern Ireland: 7 Best Glamping Sites

glamping in northern ireland

1. Fair Head Glamping Pods Ballycastle – Country Antrim

Ballycastle is one of the most scenic Northern Ireland glamping locations, where glampers enjoy views of the spectacular Fair Head mountain cliffs.

Situated at the north-eastern corner of County Antrim, the aptly named Fair Head Glamping Pods in Ballycastle is also close to the famous Dark Hedges, a popular tree-lined road that was seen on the TV series Game of Thrones

Each pod has uninterrupted views of the 5-kilometer mountain cliff Fair head, a patio, and access to the garden and terrace. All pods have a double bed, bunk beds for kids 15 and below, a tea and coffee dock, and an en suite bathroom. The glamping pods are spacious, cozy, and have the necessary comforts of home such as electricity, running water, and heating.

The area is beautiful at any season and aside from the views, Fair Head Glamping has some breathtaking views of the sky when it’s filled with stars and the occasional northern lights.

Amenities: private patio, access to garden and terrace

Address: 77 Moyarget Road – BT54 6HL

2. Finn Lough Forest Domes – County Fermanagh

 

 
 
 
 
 
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A one-of-a-kind glamping experience awaits at Finn Lough, where guests have an option to stay in futuristic transparent bubble domes. Nestled in the lush forests of scenic County Fermanagh, the clear domes allow guests a 180-degree view of their surroundings.

The dome is especially stunning at night when one can see the stars right from their beds snd take stunning photos. 

Each dome accommodates two adults and is furnished with a four-poster wooden bed, chairs, and table. There is also a rolltop bath with a view of the forest. The bubble dome doesn’t have its kitchen area, but the estate’s dining hall is just within walking distance. 

Bring a good camera or enough battery for your phones. Each bubble dome even has star maps provided so guests can pick put the constellations while they relax in their beds. 

Amenities: bespoke king-size four-poster bed, Bathroom with shower, Nespresso Coffee Machine, stargazing guidebook, and an electric fire. 

Address: 33 Letter Road, Aghnablaney BT93 2BB Enniskillen Co. Fermanagh

Website: http://www.finnlough.com/

3. East Coast Camping – County Down

East Coast Glamping, at County Down, is perfect both for those looking for a quiet retreat, and those seeking an adventure-filled getaway.

Located on the east coast in the Knockbarragh Valley, the area provides some of the most scenic glamping in Northern Ireland.

East Coast Glamping provides access to activities that allow glampers to truly experience the area, through biking or hiking in the nearby  Mourne Mountains or along Carlingford Lough. 

Designed for comfort even with simple furnishings, each pod at East Coast can accommodate four persons. There are a double bed and two single beds, a fold-out table, and an en suite bathroom in every pod.  Outside, there is a small patio, picnic tables z d easy access to walking trails as well as the camp village’s garden.

Amenities: Outdoor kitchen hut, communal firepit area, shared toilets and showers

Address: 34 Lower Knockbarragh Road, Rostrevor, Co. Down BT34 3DP

Website: http://www.eastcoastadventure.com/

4. Rossharbour Resort – County Fermanagh

 

 
 
 
 
 
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Another must-experience luxury glamping in Northern Ireland is Rossharbour Resort, also in County Fermanagh.

Situated right by the banks of the pristine Lough Eme. There are different types of glamping accommodation for couples on a romantic getaway, a family out for some much-needed retreat, or a solo traveler looking to relax. 

Rossharbour Resort offers beautifully furnished Lakeside Glamping Cabins, Luxury Lakeside Lodges, and Luxury Riverside Lodges. All accommodations look over the breathtaking Lough Eme and have access to the spa pool and Sauna. Each unit, meanwhile, has a double bed and a double sofa bed, a fully-equipped kitchenette, and an en suite bathroom. 

These all sound like Rossharbour units are the ideal home away from home. With its location by the lake, however, this resort is also a haven for hikers and bikers so make sure to explore the area to fully appreciate its picturesque surroundings. 

Amenities: Free private parking, access to garden and beach area 

Address: 435-437 Boa Island Road Rossharbour, Leggs, Enniskillen Co Fermanagh, BT93 2AL

Website: https://rossharbour.co.uk/glamping/

5. Let’s Go Hydro Glamping Pods – County Down

 

 
 
 
 
 
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When planning to go glamping in Northern Ireland but still want to be close to its beautiful capital city, check out the pods at Let’s Go Hydro. Located in Carryduff near Belfast, Let’s Go Hydro provides cozy and comfortable glamping pods that have enough creature comforts to keep guests relaxed. 

Each pod accommodates four persons and is furnished with four single beds. Well-insulated and secure, these pods are located in an elevated quiet area of an activity center with views of either the aqua park or the garden.

All pods are located close to communal showers and toilets. Picnic tables are also available to guests, as well as Swedish BBQ huts for hire. 

Amenities: Free wifi, communal kitchen area, shower block, fire pits in secluded areas

Address: Knockbracken Reservoir, 1 Mealough Rd, Carryduff, Belfast BT8 8GB

Website: https://letsgohydro.com/activities/glamping/

6. Carrickreagh Bay Luxury Glamping Pods – County Fermanagh

 

 
 
 
 
 
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Experience luxury glamping in Northern Ireland, in a setting that looks out to the stunning Lough Eme from Carrickreagh Jetty.

Located in the scenic Fermanagh county, this glamping area allows glampers to relax, as well as enjoy activities like biking and hiking. Carrickreagh Bay Luxury Glamping is in Enniskillen town, known for its storied medieval castle. 

More than its breathtaking surroundings, Carrickreagh Bay Luxury Glamping provides accommodations for couples, families, groups of friends, and even solo travelers. The pods accommodate four persons, and glampers are guaranteed spacious, well-appointed units.

Aside from a bed and sofa bed, each pod comes with a sitting and dining area, a kitchenette, and a private bathroom. 

When not relaxing in their cozy glamping pods, guests can hang out at the sun terrace. For the more active or adventurous glampers — biking, hiking, and fishing are also accessible to those staying in Carrickreagh Bay. 

Amenities: fire pit at every pod with outdoor seating, lake views, access to Ely Lodge Forest

Address: 235 Lough Shore Road, Carrickreagh, Enniskillen Co. Fermanagh BT93 7EN

7. Tepee Valley – County Armagh

 

 
 
 
 
 
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Northern Ireland glamping gets a diff vibe in Tepee Valley, County Armagh. Veering away from forests, mountains, and lakes, this campsite has views of lush farmland and the Cusher River.

This glamping site is home to different types of accommodations – from Shepherd’s hits that are good for couples to a Tin House that is ideal for families. There are also tepees, yurts, log cabins, and wagons – all cozy and well-furnished for every glamper’s comfort. 

Regardless of type, every accommodation in Tepee Valley has a comfortable sleeping area, chairs and table, and access to a toilet and bath. Each of these glamping pods comes with a fire bowl or chimenea for barbecue. or evening campfires. 

There are various outdoor activities available nearby, such as karting, hiking, and horse riding. Make sure to try any of these activities to see snd experience more of rural Northern Ireland. 

Amenities: Free parking, each unit has a fire pit outside for campfires and barbecue, 

Address: 20 Shanecrackan Road, Markethill BT60 1TS, United Kingdom

Website: http://www.tepeevalleycampsite.co.uk/

 

Glamping In Kerry – 7 Best Glamping Sites In Kerry

Known for its majestic scenery,  County Kerry is a haven for nature lovers. From the massive Killarney National Park and its lakes to the stunning Skelligs, glamping in Kerry is guaranteed to be filled with unforgettable views. 

An ideal location for outdoor activities such as hiking and biking, Kerry is home to some of the prettiest glamping accommodations in Ireland that range from African-style tents to elegant lodges. There’s a lot to explore in the area and go make the most of your visit, glamping is a must-experience. Here are seven of the best places to go glamping in Kerry. 

Glamping In Kerry – 7 Best Glamping Sites In Kerry

glamping in kerry

1. Coach Field Camp

Situated at the foot of Slieve Mish Mountains, Coach Field Camp is in one of the most incredible parts of the Wild Atlantic Way.  If you are planning a Kerry glamping trip to relax with family and friends, Coach Field has every glamper’s comfort in mind. Staying in traditional pods in this camp village in Ireland’s southwest guarantees access to all the beautiful places that Kerry has to offer. 

Each pod at Camp Field can accommodate up to four persons. Furnished with comfortable bunk beds with beddings plus chairs, the units are within easy access to the communal bathrooms and showers. Glampers also enjoy free WiFi to allow them to share their glamping adventure with family snd friends. Shen not relaxing in the pod or exploring the scenic surroundings, guests can hang out at the nearby pub. The area is also an ideal base for enjoying more outdoor activities and even watersports to make the most of their glamping trip. 

Amenities: free Wi-Fi, private parking, onsite bar, and restaurant 

Address: Camp, Camp Cross, Co. Kerry, V92 EC97

Website: Coach Field Camp 

 

 
 
 
 
 
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2. Dingle Way Glamping

Located close to Inch Beach and the Dingle Peninsula, Dingle Way Glamping is another must-visit in County Kerry. An ideal place to stay for adventure buffs and nature lovers, this glamping site is nestled in the lush forested area between the mountains of Slieve Mish and Annascaul Lake. If you plan ln glamping in Kerry, you’re in for both relaxation and fun outdoor activities at Dingle Way. 

Each pod in this glamping village is furnished with bed and beddings, a well-equipped kitchenette, and an en suite bathroom. There’s also free WiFi and private parking, as well as a garden and barbecue area. When not enjoying the comforts of their pods, guests have access to activities such as biking, hiking in the hills, fishing, surfing, and star-gazing. 

Amenities: access to garden and barbecue area, free parking, free wifi

Address: Derrygorman, Annascaul, Co. Kerry, V92 Y9D9

Website:  Dingle Way Glamping 

 

 
 
 
 
 
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3. Dromquinna Manor

Nestled in the lush countryside of Kenmare, Dromquinna Manor is a favorite destination for couples out for romantic glamping in Kerry. The accommodations here are constructed in the style of African safari tents, with one super luxury tent called the Hideaway. Surrounded by verdant gardens and hardwood trees, Dromquinna Manor is also a popular venue for weddings. 

Each tent is on an elevated timber deck, has double-flaps that serve as doors and windows with a net cover. Inside, there is a cozy sitting area and a bed with a fluffy duvet. Situated on the west side of the Dromquinna Estate, guests staying in the tents can easily access the kitchen, showers, toilets, laundry area,  recreation rooms, and shop. There is also a central area designated for barbecues and campfires.

Amenities: close to the toilets, showers, kitchen, games room, reading room, shop. central area for barbecues and campfires

Address: Greenane, Dromquinna, Co. Kerry, V93 PK83

Website:  Dromquinna Manor 

 

 
 
 
 
 
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 4. Killarney Glamping At The Grove

From a luxury tent inside Killarney Glamping At The Grove, guests have fantastic views of the Kerry mountains. Set in a verdant area close to the Killarney town center and Flask River, this is a popular Kerry glamping destination for couples. A truly unique getaway that prioritizes every guest’s privacy and relaxation, this glamping spot is also a haven for adventurers yet doesn’t compromise on comfort. 

Known for luxurious glamping tents, Killarney Glamping At The Grove offers beautifully furnished accommodations. The bedroom is spacious with a king bed snd electric blankets. All tents have a mini-kitchen with a Nespresso machine and gas stove. There is an ensuite bathroom, with a hot shower and toiletries. Guests will also love the private patio where they can enjoy the surrounding scenery. 

Amenities: Free parking, central eating, decked patio, outdoor sheltered kitchen

Address: Ballycasheen Road, Ballycasheen, Killarney, Co. Kerry

Website:  Killarney Glamping At The Grove

 

 
 
 
 
 
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5. Farmyard Lane Glamping

Located within an apple orchard and working farm, Farmyard Lane Glamping provides a fun yet relaxing getaway for couples, families, and friends alike. This glamping site in the heart of the Reeks District is close to popular Kerry attractions such as the MacGillycuddy Reeks and the  Gap of Dunloe. Farmyard Lane emphasizes sustainability and uses recyclable materials throughout the site. 

Every glamping pod in Farmyard Lane is furnished with a bed, sofa bed, soft linens, and throws from Kerry Woollen Mills. There is also a kitchenette and an en suite bathroom in each unit. For breakfast, guests at Farmyard Lane can enjoy fresh organic eggs, gluten-free bread, and honey from their bee farm. 

Amenities: private parking, shared kitchen, access apple orchard, and a working farm

Address: Lahard, Beaufort, Killarney, Co. Kerry, V93 W2T0

 

 
 
 
 
 
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6. Priory Glamping Pods and Guest Accommodation

With its proximity to Killarney National Park, guests at Priory Glamping Pods are within easy access to both nature and adventure. This is the ideal location if you’re going glamping in Kerry and want to stay in a quiet and cozy area with lush scenery everywhere. 

At Priory Glamping, each pod has every glampers comfort and safety in mind. All glamping pods come with a bed and sofa and can hold up to 3 three persons. There is an en suite bathroom with toiletries, as well as a kitchenette. The floor-to-ceiling front window provides views of the verdant surrounding, but guests can also access the terrace snd garden to see more of this Kerry glamping haven. 

Amenities: free Wi-Fi, free parking, access to terrace and garden

Address: 3 Priory Grove, Scrahane, Killarney, Co. Kerry, V93 Y2X8

 

 
 
 
 
 
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7. South Kerry Glamping

Located 5 km from Cahersiveen, this is easily one of the prettiest locations when glamping in Kerry. Situated among trees snd quite secluded, guests at this glamping spot will have the Kerry Bog Ponies as their neighbors. The property is also a great base for exploring big Coast st on the Wild Atlantic Way.

South Kery glamping offers a  wooden pod for up to four built on its plotland and has a footpath made of huge slabs of stones.  Furnished with a bed, sofa bed and with a well-equipped kitchen, a compact bathroom is also provided. To better appreciate the surrounding views, the pod also has a deck with chairs and a table. 

Amenities: Free parking, free Wi-Fi, kitchen, heating, the pod has its plot of land in a secluded lane

Address: Killurly East, Cahersiveen, Co. Kerry, V23 AW77

Website: South Kerry Glamping

 

 
 
 
 
 
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Glamping in Galway – 8 Best Glamping Sites In Galway

As one of the least densely populated counties in the Emerald Isle, there so much of its unique and varied landscapes to enjoy in Galway. From farmland plains to heathered hills, the Connemara mountains to the scenic beachesGalway glamping is fast becoming a favorite getaway. Ever tried staying in a tent by the beach, or a wagon close to the fairy garden? How about completely going off the grid on a working farm? This county on Ireland’s western coast has it all. Read on and find out the best places for glamping in Galway.  

Glamping in Galway – Best Glamping Sites In Galway

glamping in galway

1. Aran Camping and Glamping

 

 
 
 
 
 
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The location of Aran Camping and Glamping on Inis Mor has the best views of Galway Bay. This idyllic location, and how the pods are spread around the island, make it one of the best places for glamping in Galway. 

The glamping pods were designed like ancient Clochán stone huts and Tigín cottages. Clochán pods can hold up to 4 people while Tigín can accommodate up to six. These stylish glamping pods all have comfortable beds, a kitchenette and dining area, and a private bathroom. When not relaxing in their pods, glampers may hang out at the terrace or barbecue area, or spend time on the beach. 

Amenities: Access to a private beach, shared lounge, terrace, barbecue area, free WiFi 

Address: Frenchman’s Beach, Kilronan, Co. Galway, H91 F65P

2. Clifden Eco Beach 

 

 
 
 
 
 
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Situated among stunning dunes on the beautiful Connemara coast is the award-winning Clifden Eco Beach. Its location in the Wild Atlantic Way makes this eco-park one of the most scenic places to go glamping in Galway. Each accommodation here has access to the private beach, which is ideal for picnics or simply enjoying the views of the Atlantic. 

Clifden Eco Beach offers tents that are good for two to three persons. Each tent is equipped with an airbed, pillows, and chairs. Glampers may also rent a mobile home which is good for a small family. Whatever accommodation one chooses at Clifden Eco Beach, there is access to showers and toilets, laundry facilities, and a kitchen that serves free coffee and tea. 

Amenities: Private beach access, bike hire/bile lock barn, eco campfire, fishing point, harbor access

Address: Claddaghduff Road Wild Atlantic Way, Clifden Co. Galway

3. Earl’s View Maxi Pod

Located in the heart of the Connemara, Earl’s View Maxi Pod is another must-visit destination for scenic Galway glamping. From each of the glamping pods, visitors can enjoy unobstructed views of the Atlantic as well as the 12 Pins mountain range. 

Staying at Earl’s View Maxi Pod allows guests to enjoy nature while still having access to modern creature comforts. Each pod has not just a cozy sleeping area, but a well-equipped kitchen as well. The pods are well insulated and have their bathroom. Outside of the pod, there are picnic sets and fire pits for spending evenings looking out towards the surrounding scenery. 

Amenities: Access to a bike rack, outdoor sitting area, fire pit, and barbecue area

Address: Dooyeher, Connemara, Letterdeskert, Co. Galway

4. Galway Camping

 

 
 
 
 
 
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Farm glamping in Galway is another must-experience in this side of the Emerald Isle. Set in what used to be the farmyard of the Blake Estate, Galway Glamping has 11 acres of lush surroundings. Galway Glamping occupies 11 acres of lush surroundings, home to historic buildings such as 18th-century barns, 19th-century chapel. 

This glamping destination offers cabins that have access to the farm and walled garden.  Each cabin is beautifully furnished and can accommodate two persons. Shower and toilet facilities are in a separate outhouse, as well as the communal kítchen. 

Amenities: Free private parking, garden access

Address: Galway Glamping, Brooklodge Demesne, Ballyglunin, Tuam, Co. Galway, H54 XC86

Website: https://galwayglamping.ie/

5. Crann Og Eco Farm 

 

 
 
 
 
 
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A Galway glamping that takes guests completely off-grid what Crann Og Eco Farm offers. Imagine staying on a working farm, with sheep and hens walking around, among old trees and verdant gardens. Save for a charging station for gadgets, this is a no-technology area. There is no electricity and WiFi either. 

Since 2020, Crann Og Eco Farm only offers cabins. However, guests still get to enjoy its well-insulated, solar-lit accommodations. A cabin can hold up to 4 adults, who can enjoy the convenience of a kitchenette and toilets in their compact space.  When not relaxing indoors, the farm is quiet and secluded and perfect for strolls in the morning or late afternoon. 

Amenities: Free parking, solar lighting, gas heating, campfire pit, farm access

Address: Crann Og Eco Farm, Derrymore, Drummin Gort, County Galway

Website: https://www.ecostayireland.com/

6. Kitty’s Cosy Camping

 

 
 
 
 
 
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With its idyllic setting by the foothills of the Burren, Kitty’s Cosy Camping is never short of spectacular views. The area is just a short drive from the great Cliffs of Moher, which makes it an even more special Galway glamping site. 

Kitty’s Cosy Camping offers unique accommodations in a variety of colors. Green and red wagons can take in up to 4 adults, while purple wagons are good for couples. There are also tents for two adults, as well as cabins to accommodate six people.  All accommodations are furnished with comfortable beds and beddings and are well-insulated. 

There are showers and toilets in a nearby outhouse, and they run on recycled rainwater, which is abundant in Ireland. Guests also have access to a picnic and campfire area where they can enjoy the beautiful surrounding scenery. 

Amenities: sustainable shower and toilet outhouse, access to the picnic area, and campfire pit

Address: Cosy Glamping Campsite, Cappacasheen Kinvara Co. Galway H91D2PX

Website: https://www.kittyscamping.com/

7. Pod Umna Village

 

 
 
 
 
 
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One of the most popular destinations for glamping in Ireland, Pod Umna Village is also a popular venue for hen parties and weekend getaways. This glamping village is in an urban setting and can fit up to 40 people in various glamping accommodations. These are bell tents, pods, and shepherd’s huts spread in a lush landscape with many trees. 

The fully-insulated pods, a favorite among glampers, can hold up to five people. Each pod has mattresses, power, and heating. There is also a deck area,  with a table and chairs for picnics and barbecue. 

Amenities: Deck area with table and chairs, barbecue pit, indoor-heating 

Address: Dominick Street, Portumna, Co. Galway

8. The Wagon Glamping, Galway

The colorful wagons of Loughrea are probably the most unique Galway glamping accommodations in the county. Quirky and movie-like, these are ideal for families as well as for romantic getaways. The wagons are parked close to an enchanting fairy garden, an added reason that makes it an exciting glamping destination. 

Each wagon comes with mostly pull-out furnishings – from the table to the double bed. There is also a bench and an extra single bed in some wagons. From the site, guests have access to a biking trail, playground, and views of the forest. 

Amenities: Free parking, free WiFi, access to the fairy garden and forest trails, recreation area for kids and adults

Address: Kylebrack, Slieve Aughty Centre, Loughrea, Co Galway

Glamping In Donegal: 7 Best Glamping Sites In Donegal

County Donegal is known for its stunning castles, rugged coastlines, and lush mountains. It is along the Wild Atlantic Way and is home to some of the best destinations in this enchanting Irish trail. Over the years, County Donegal has also acquired a reputation for having some of the best and quirkiest glamping accommodations.

Glamping In Donegal: 7 Best Glamping Sites In Donegal

glamping in donegal

Whether you fancy the Halfling life or want to live out a childhood dream of staying in a treehouse, there is a Donegal glamping place for you. Here’s a quick guide on what you expect when glamping in Donegal.

1. Tom Crean’s Eco Cabin

A log Cabin named after the great Irish explorer Tom Crean, this glamping accommodation is located right along the Wild Atlantic Way. This is the perfect getaway for those who want to be alone with nature. Surrounded by lush Meadows and close to a lake, Tom Crean’s Eco Cabin is a must experience when glamping in Donegal. 

A cabin and teepee hybrid structure, it is set right in the middle of grassy Kanda and flower fields. It has space for up to five people, with a small lounge and a loft sleeping area. The whole place is solar-powered, and a quick walking distance to the outhouse for the kitchen and bathroom.

Guests who love hiking can spend mornings or afternoons in the nearby forest. The area is free of sound and air pollution, perfect for enjoying starry nights by the lake. 

Amenities: Free parking on premises, dedicated workspace, hot shower

Address: Ballyshannon, County Donegal

2. Lough Mardal Lakeside Glamping, Donegal

A popular destination for glamping in Donegal, Lake Mardal Lodge is also among the most scenic. The eponymous”Lodge” stands at its center, a communal space that is accessible to glampers.

Constructed using straw, mud, and a grass roof, the Lodge houses the recreation area, a well-equipped kitchen, a common dining area, toilets, and bathrooms. 

The main glamping accommodations, meanwhile, are simple yet well-insulated yurts. These yurts are weatherproof and durable, that they can accommodate campers at any season of the year. Each yurt also comes with wool blankets, 15 Tog duvets, fluffy slippers, hot water bottles, and a wood-burning stove to keep glampers warm.

One cool feature of the yurts is the skylit domes that allow guests to watch the sunrise or gaze at the stars while in their bed. 

Amenities: free private parking, shared lounge and terrace, barbecue area

Address: Bradlieve, Ballintra, Co. Donegal, F94 W4FE, 

Website: Lough Mardal Lakeside Glamping 

3. Portsalon Luxury Camping, Donegal

 

 
 
 
 
 
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Established in 2014, Portsalon has become the go-to destination when it comes to luxury glamping in Donegal. This 118-acre charming retreat has also been awarded as one of “The 15 Best Campsites in Europe”.

Located in the Fanad Peninsula, Portsalon Luxury Camping takes pride in the views that glampers can enjoy onsite. In the east, one can see  Inishowen Peninsula, while nearby there’s Knockalla mountain, Lough Swilly, and Mulroy Bay. 

All five yurts are strategically placed to enjoy coastal views. These yurts can accommodate up to six people in the king-size bed and futons. There’s a wood-burning stove in each yurt to provide heating, as well as a fire pit outside for barbecues and campfires.

All yurts are with easy access to a separate building that houses the bathrooms, as well as the fully-equipped common kitchen and dining area. 

Amenities: common seating area, kitchen, barbecue area, and garden

Address: Portsalon Luxury Camping Cashelpreaghan, Portsalon F92V8X2

Website: Portsalon Luxury Camping 

4. Donegal Hobbit Pod

Inspired by the hobbit house in “Lord of the Rings”, this Donegal glamping accommodation is your ultimate retreat in the wild. The round facade and dome-like construction of this cozy pod are reminiscent of the Halflings’ abode but filled with modern comforts.

Located in the Donegal countryside, the pod is a good walking distance to a secluded beach, as well as a hiking trail up the nearby mountain. 

Known as the CroPod. The comfy sleeping area features a double bed flanked by cute nightstands.  There is also a two-seater couch, a small kitchen, and a bathroom. A multi-awarded place when it comes to glamping in Donegal, the CroPod’s idyllic scenery makes it an ideal honeymoon destination or romantic weekend getaway. 

Amenities: WiFi and dedicated workspace, free parking, private entrance, heating, hot shower

Address: Croaghacullion, Glencolumbkille, Co. Donegal, Ireland

5. Oakwell Holiday Village

 

 
 
 
 
 
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Whether you’re a small family, a couple, or a large group of friends, there is a perfect space for you in Oakwell Holiday Village. From barn-style chalets to pods and bell tents, this village provides some of the best and highly rated places for glamping in Donegal. 

Located in the quiet countryside by the banks of Lough Swilly, the place is also an ideal base for exploring the Wild Atlantic Way. Each glamping hut, pod, or tent has minimalistic yet stylish interiors, with just a bed and lounge area.

There is an outhouse for those staying in pods or tents, where there is a kitchen and bathroom.  People staying at the Oakwell Holiday Village also have access to a garden, playground, and wellness area

Amenities: free WiFi, shared lounge, a wellness area with hot tub and sauna, children’s playground 

Address: Ballylin, Ramelton, Co. Donegal, F92 VXC4

6. The Bird Box, Donegal

To get to this unique glamping spot in Donegal, visitors walk through a bank of whispering trees. The enchanting journey leads to a rope bridge that’s connected to the deck and the treehouse itself.

From here, one gets to enjoy stunning views of the Glenveagh National Park, making the aptly named Bjrdbox one of the most beautiful places to go glamping in Donegal. 

This secluded retreat is nestled among seasoned oak and Scottish pine trees. The double glass doors open to a cozy loft-style space, with a couch and heating from a wood-burning stove. There is also a small kitchen and a bathroom with a hot shower. A ladder leads up to the sleeping area that has a bed and a round window that looks over the lush surroundings. 

A unique option when glamping in Donegal, this place is a must for nature lovers and those looking for a quiet and relaxing getaway. 

Amenities:  Separate street or building entrance, hot showers, smoke, and carbon.mono⅞

Address: Between Doochary and Fintown, Co. Donegal (exact location to be provided upon booking)

7. Wild Atlantic Camp 

 

 
 
 
 
 
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Glamping in Donegal but on a limited budget? Wild Atlantic Camp in Creeslough has some of the best accommodations at a price that won’t break the bank. The accommodations here range from the basic bell tents and wooden pods to the good-for-two pods to glamping villas. 

The wooden pods can hold up to four persons, has a private patio, and contains a sofa bed and bunk bed. The good-for-two pods have a wrought iron bed, rattan chairs, and chandeliers. These pods have electricity, heating, and free wifi.

The kitchen and bathroom are in a separate outhouse. The glamping villas, meanwhile, have all the furnishings of a small house – from the couch to the well-equipped kitchen. 

Amenities: free parking, toilet, and shower, shared kitchen, recreational facilities onsite

Address: Main St, Creeslough, Co. Donegal

Website: Wild Atlantic Camp 

 

Glamping In Cork: 8 Best Glamping Sites In Cork

Known for diverse landscapes and stunning scenery, County Cork is a great location for glamping. Occupying Ireland’s southwestern part, this part of the Emerald Isle is slowly becoming a go-to place for glamping some of its unique locations. From the farm to the forest, to the garden of a historic house – here are the best glamping sites in Cork.

Glamping In Cork: 8 Best Glamping Sites In Cork

1. Chléire Haven, Skibbereen

 

 
 
 
 
 
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Chléire Haven is located in Cape Clear, eight miles off the south-west coast of County Cork. At three miles long and over one mile wide, this is Ireland’s southernmost Irish-speaking inhabited island. Therefore, this unique and fascinating locale provides an incredible setting for glamping in Cork

Chléire Haven is the ideal glamping spot for those looking for a quiet retreat. Overlooking Cape Clear’s south harbor, every yurt or teepee gets a piece of the island’s stunning scenery. Visitors can choose between a furnished yurt or a more modest teepee. Both are cozy and have access to a fire pit and barbecue, so this is still proper camping. 

When not relaxing in the yurt or teepee, visitors can enjoy activities like hiking, kayaking, or even snorkeling. It’s also a must to get to know the locals and learn some Irish by visiting pubs and tea rooms.

Amenities: solar-powered lighting,  hot wet-room showers, toilets, and washing-up area, phone/laptop charging area

Address: Cape Clear Island, Skibbereen, Co. Cork

Website: Chléire Haven

2. Glamping at Ballyvolane House, Cork

 

 
 
 
 
 
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Glamping at Ballyvolane House is for those who prefer a traditional yet stylish camp setting. The site is in the garden of an 18th-century Georgian house, in the northern countryside of Co. Cork. Within the lush gardens with well-maintained and tall trees, are accommodations perfect for a glamping holiday in Cork. 

The site has 4-meter and 5-meter bell tents that can hold a couple and a small family of four. These are furnished with a futon-style bed, nightstand, chairs, and coir carpet. There is also a more lavish Glamping Ark that’s fashioned after a pig ark, that’s ideal for couples. 

Those staying in tents and pig ark have access to a converted barn, which serves as a recreation area. However, the best way to experience the area is by strolling around the luxurious gardens, enjoying the scenery and a bit of wildlife.

Amenities: Access to the converted barn space for recreation and relaxation, large common kitchen, wash house with toilets and hot showers

Address: Ballyvolane House, Castlelyons, Co. Cork, P61 FP70

Website: Glamping at Ballyvolane House

3. Glamping Pod Shanagarry, Ballycotton

Within the Fota Wildlife Park is a glamping site that offers pods instead of tents. Located just 36 minutes from the city of Cork, this is an ideal spot for those who want to relax but still be able to see more of the nearby areas. 

Each glamping pod in the Shanagarry village of East Cork comes with all the essentials and more. There is a patio, a well-equipped kitchen, and a private bathroom on top of the usual bed and sitting area. 

Glampers who want to see more of Shanagarry can check out the many bars and pubs for some local beer and traditional Irish music. There is also a lighthouse in the area that is accessible via boat tours, and the pier is just a short walking distance away.

Amenities: Free wifi, free parking, garden and sun terrace, barbecue area

Address: Monagurra Monatray, Cork, Co.  Cork

4. Inch Hideaway Eco-Glamping, East Cork

 

 
 
 
 
 
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Situated along the Wild Atlantic Way and close to the popular Inch Beach, the Inch Hideaway is a sustainable option when glamping in Cork. Families and groups of friends would love the stylish yet cozy yurts. Each unit is equipped and furnished with essential creature comforts. 

The heating in each yurt comes from a wood-fired stove. Each yurt is elevated from the ground to protect glampers from the elements. Another cool thing about the yurts at Inch Hideaway is that each unit has its own private garden space, which is big enough to accommodate a tent. 

Pets are welcome at Inch Hideaway. Glampers can take their furry friends for walks to the nearby Inch Beach and White Bay.

Amenities: Free parking, shared garden/lounge, barbecue area

Address: Inch Hideaway, Glanturkin, Whitegate, Co. Cork, P25 ND37

Website: Inch Hideaway

5. Mountain Forge Escape, West Cork

 

 
 
 
 
 
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The homey atmosphere and its distinct location are just some of the reasons why Mountain Forge Escape is a must experience when glancing in Cork. It is located right at the starting point of the Wild Atlantic Way, in Ardfield village. This guarantees stunning views from every tent equipped Forge. 

The area has well-spaced tent pitches, as well as a designated place for campervans. Whether staying in a tent or van, glampers have access to shared facilities such as a fully-equipped kitchen, and shower and toilet facilities. 

Mountain Forge, a relatively new name when it comes to camping also has a new dome. This futuristic-looking pod offers luxury accommodations set amidst the dramatic scenery of the Wild Atlantic Way.

Amenities: Free parking, self-catering kitchen, shower, and toilets

Address: Mountain Common, Ardfield, Co. Cork, P85 XK19

Website: Mountain Forge Escape

6. The Botanical Bell Tent, Glengariff

A bell tent in the woods – that’s exactly the kind of accommodation that awaits glampers at The Botanical Bell Tent. Located in Glengariff on the stunning Beara Peninsula, this has to be one of the best glancing that Co. Cork has to offer. 

An ideal getaway for couples, the Botanical Bell Tent is furnished with a couch, a king bed, coir mats, and solar lighting. Glampers also have access to the terrace and the Garden of Re-imagination, which was inspired by Willy Wonka. Everything in this garden is edible, but instead of candies and chocolate, glampers will eat plants, flowers, fruits, and tubers.

Amenities: Free parking, campfire area, access to terrace and garden 

Address: Tooreen House, Tooreen, Glengarriff, Co. Cork

7. Tig Lammax Glamping Pod, Macroom

 

 
 
 
 
 
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Visitors who fancy a quiet glamping spot in the Cork countryside would love the cute pod and cozy campervan at Tig Lammax. Situated in the farm area of the pretty Macroom town, these glamping accommodations are well-furnished and spacious. Both have access to a toilet, shower, kitchen, and laundry area

It is located in Macroom town, home to the Gearagh nature reserve which is perfect for hiking. Close by is the Gougane Barra, the location of the Com Rua. bleak cliffs.

Amenities: Shared lounge area, self-catering kitchen, free parking

Address: Toames West, Tooms West, Co. Cork, P12 V343

Website: Tig Lammax

8. Top of the Rock Pod Pairc, Drimoleague

 

 
 
 
 
 
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Top of the Rock is hands down, the best Cork glamping site for families with kids. Offering a unique farm experience, kids and adults alike will enjoy petting the sheep, hens, and ducks.

Meanwhile, the surrounding area is ideal for biking and walking in between relaxing in the glamping pods. 

The site has a range of glamping pods that can accommodate couples out on a weekend getaway or families looking to spend quality time together. Each pod has a comfy bed, a pull-out couch, a mini kitchen, and heating. 

There is also an outdoor deck where glampers can take in the surrounding views during the day, or relax while stargazing at night. 

Amenities: shower and toilet block, self-catering Camper’s kitchen, children’s play area, games room

Address: Rockmount, Drimoleague, Co. Cork

Website: Top of the Rock Pod Pairc

 

 

30 Irish Slang Words Every Visitor Should Learn Before Visiting Ireland

Ireland is the only European nation that has the highest percentage of citizens who speak English as their mother tongue or native language at 97.51%. One can say that the English language is deeply ingrained in the blood of Irish people. With the United Kingdom (UK) falling behind second, and a percentage of 94.45% native English language speakers. This said the Irish locals have created thousands of English slang that dates back from the medieval period up until modern times.

These Irish slang words are commonly used in everyday Irish conversations—some might sound offensive, some might sound like it was pulled out of a literary textbook. But most of them are creations of literary geniuses and everyday Irishmen who strive to make the English language as dynamic, engaging, heartfelt, communicative, and fun as possible. Some of these words are familiar to native English speakers from the USA and UK but used in a different Irish context. But no need to get too intellectual! This guide will help you understand how these words were formed, and how they’re used in your first or next visit to Ireland. When to use these words will be up to your discretion—and that makes learning and using Irish slang words more fun and exciting!

30 Irish Slang Words Every Visitor Should Learn Before Visiting Ireland


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 Irish Slang Word #1: Sláinte!

Sláinte!

What it means:

Pronounced as slawn-sha, if you and your friends have a couple of more rounds, the best Irish chant for cheers is Sláinte! What a fine way to raise your mugs!

Sample Usage:

Sláinte! For good fortunes and well wishes for Johnny!

Irish Slang Word #2: Black Stuff

What it means:

It’s not literally black, but you guessed it right—a strong pint of this famous Irish dry stout might knock-out the light-hearted. In faint-lighted pubs and bars, a pint of Guinness might appear black or dark-colored. No matter the color, just mention this to your local Irish bartender, and he’ll know what to serve.

Sample Usage:

Hand me over some of that black stuff.

Irish Slang Word #3: Acushla

What it means:

Addressing your darling or Irish sweetheart from Ireland will never be as soft and endearing as the Irish term acushla. It stems from the Irish Gaelic word cuisle, which means ‘darling’, or more literally ‘vein’ or ‘pulse’. Cuisle was sometimes paired with ma, giving us macushla, or ‘my darling’ a term of endearment you’ll never forget. During your trip, if an Irish local or your best friend calls you their acushla, don’t be too flattered!

Sample Usage:

Where’s our next destination, acushla?

Irish Slang Word #4: Craic

What it means:

Stems from the more common English term ‘crack’. This term is used for news, gossip, and fun conversations engaged by the locals. The word ‘crack’ came from the Middle English term crak, meaning loud, bragging conversation. The people from Northern England and Scotland borrowed the word that denoted a meaning for ‘conversation’ or ‘news.’ The term ‘what’s the crack’ essentially means, ‘how are you’, or ‘have you any news?’ Interestingly, ‘crack’ was borrowed from the Irish term ‘craic’, and was re-borrowed! And now, it is an official slang in the modern Irish scenes.

Sample Usage:

Fergus, my lad! What’s the craic? How’ve ye been? I missed ye.    

Irish Slang Word #5: Banjaxed

What it means:

The etymology of this fun Irish word remains unknown until today, but when you say something is banjaxed, it means they have been shattered or were broken. Synonymously and practically, it refers to a person who is over-fatigued from a long, tiring day. You certainly wouldn’t want to hear this from your Irish tour guide at the start of his or her tour!

Sample Usage:

Can we stop by a nearby cave, laddie? Your gaffer’s banjaxed, and I feel like I can’t conquer Mount Carrauntoohil any longer.

Dad, we’ve only climbed less than a hundred feet. Let’s get moving!

Irish Slang Word #6: Arseways

Arseways

What it means:

In terms of direction, this term is not a bit offensive and is actually quite useful. When you hear an Irish local saying that you are going in arseways, it means you are going in the wrong direction (A person’s arse can be found behind). Or, it could also mean that something is not working properly, like a tourist van or a cellular device.

Sample Usage:

Tough luck, fella. We’re stuck here. Our GPS’s gone arseways.

Irish Slang Word #7: Shebeen

What it means:

The term roots from the Irish word síbín, meaning illegal whiskey. Way back, uncut liquor and alcoholic beverages were sold in Ireland in unlicensed bars and clubs in Ireland. Today, the term is commonly used for hidden bars that provide good music and a variety of drinks. A good destination for your Irish escapade.

Sample Usage:

I heard the shebeens in Dublin at night are great places to enjoy good jazz and fresh drinks. Would you like to come with me?

Irish Slang Word #8: Chancer

What it means:

Irishmen and women, with shamrock and four-clover leaves, are fans of good luck. But a chancer is a person who pushes their luck a wee too much. They are commonly risk-takers or, sometimes, daredevils. You might befriend an Irish local or a tourist who is a chancer, and he or she will take you to the wildest places you could imagine.

Sample Usage:

I heard the waves are great at Inchydoney Beach, honey. Chancers like you and your friends won’t have a hard time finding the perfect wave.

Irish Slang Word #9: Boyo

What it means:

Depending on how you use it, boyo (plural: boyos) can refer to a boy or a lad, who is usually younger than the speaker. It might sound derogatory to some, or might be a term of endearment for others. It all depends on the mood or context of your sentence or idea. For travelers, if your good friends call you boyo, it might be a term of endearment. But be wary if a stranger addresses you with this term at the middle of the night.

Sample Usage:

Go fetch me a mug, boyo. (Derogatory). It’s been ages since I last seen ye, boyo. You’re lookin’ fine, lad! (Term of endearment)

Irish Slang Word #10: Begrudgery

Begrudgery

What it means:

A state of discontentment, envy, or sometimes, wishing of ill will for those who achieve success on a friend or a person of higher power or authority. It is a term most commonly used by angry Irishmen for the current state of their lives, caused by another Irishman’s fortune. It stems from the English noun grudge—and as you can hear from Irish conversations, the persons who use this term usually hold a grudge towards the persons they are referring to, or, they just simply are complaining about their rough situation in life.

On your next Irish trip, you might hear quite a few locals complaining about their state of begrudgery. With this knowledge at hand, you’ll find a good way to empathize with their current situation.

Sample Usage:

I met a local once at a pub during our extended trip in County Donegal, and he kept complaining about his life’s begrudgery, and how he never has luck wherever he goes.

Irish Slang Word #11: Colleen

What it means:

This word is as pretty as it sounds. It refers to a young Irish girl, or a lass, in Scottish tongues. The word colleen is derived from the old Irish Gaelic term cailin which means ‘girl’ or ‘maiden’.  

Sample Usage:

The next time you visit the National Botanic Gardens in Dublin, you might befriend a couple of colleens studying horticulture.  They’ll tell you the secrets to creating the best garden in the world.

Irish Slang Word #12: Gob

What it means:

Derived from the Irish word gaeilge, meaning beak, gob often refers to as mouth in English. Often used in a derogatory context.

Sample Usage:

Crank your gob, mate!

The black stuff’s spilling from your gob, laddie.

Irish Slang Word #13: Trad

What it means:

A short or a clipped version of the word ‘traditional’, trad often refers to traditional Irish folk music. A couple of trad music sessions are commonly found in local pubs and public areas around Ireland.

This genre has endured and stands against the hip and modern music genres introduced in Ireland.

Some instruments commonly used for trad music are the fiddle, the flute and the whistle, Uilleann pipes, harp, accordion, banjo, mandolin, and harmonica. Perfect combinations for an Irish jig!

Sample Usage:

Have you heard of the new band from across the block? I heard they’re performing good trade at the old marketplace. Let’s watch?

Irish Slang Word #14: Mar dhea (Irish)

What it means:

Or ‘mor ya’ or ‘mauryah’ in Irish English, it is a derisive interjection that can be properly translated as ‘Yeah, right’ in the US English language slang or ‘bullocks’ in the UK. But much stronger. So, the next time your Irish friend cancels your much-needed Irish vacation plans because of a ‘stomach-ache’, you can say mor ya.

Sample Usage:

Meredith, I really need to go to my brother’s wedding.

Mor ya, you don’t have a brother, Eddie! We have to go to Clonakilty. Now.

Irish Slang Word #15: Ciotog

What it means:

Pronounced as ki-togue, it is an Irish slang that usually refers to a left-handed person. But don’t be too proud when someone calls you by this term. The slang is much similar to the Irish word ciotach, meaning clumsy. And it has further connotations: a ciotach is regarded as a strange person, a strange one, or perhaps, touched by the Devil himself. These meanings portray left-hand people as weird outcasts of or Irish society.

Sample Usage:

You see that poor painter, begging for scraps? A nasty ciotog he was, and a great painter, but filled with greed and self-loathing.  

Irish Slang Word #16: Brogue

What it means:

Derived from the Irish Gaelic word brog, a shoe, or from Old Norse, broc, meaning leg covering. It usually refers to two things—the first is a heavy accent of a certain dialect or a shoe made of untanned leather.

Sample Usage:

My father has a brogue Yorkshire accent that he couldn’t seem to get rid of; despite his three-decade stay in London, he sounds like a native York.

Father, buy me one of those brogue shoes!

Irish Slang Word #17: On tenterhooks

What it means:

Tenterhooks are hooks used to fasten cloth, either on a wall or a frame, for drying. But in Ireland, when you say someone is on tenterhooks, it means they are at the edge of something agitating. Someone who is driven by anxiousness, waiting for something to occur. Like a pulled piece of cloth from a tenterhook, one can imagine the stretched agitation of a person on tenterhooks. So, the next time your trip advisor mentions that your trip to a certain destination is on tenterhooks, be wary.

Sample Usage:

Listen, mates, we got ourselves on tenterhooks for a while. I can’t reach my coworkers, and the other tourist guides trailing behind us won’t be able to hear us outside the Cave of Maghera. We’ll wait until dusk. If no help comes to us, we’ll move on.    

Irish Slang Word #18: Dosser

Dosser

What it means:

In Irish and UK slang, a dosser is someone who prefers to relax all day, a lazy person, in simpler terms. No one is entirely sure of its origins, but its most probable origination is from the slang ‘to doze-off’, meaning to sleep for a short time, or take a nap. Be sure not to let anyone tell you that you’re a dosser on your trip.

Sample Usage:

Stop being a dosser, man! Let’s enjoy the view!

Irish Slang Word #19: Eejit

What it means:

A more endearing term for the word ‘idiot’ or ‘fool’ is the Irish slang eejit. Yet, still, it is used in a mocking manner—with a hint of affection. If you ever get lost in a familiar neighborhood in Ireland, don’t be too offended when your Irish friend calls you an eejit.

Sample usage:

You eejit! The pub’s right in front of our gaff!

Irish Slang Word #20: Gaffer

What it means:

Commonly used in the UK and Ireland, a gaffer is colloquially termed as one’s boss, your ‘old man’, or a foreman. On your trip to a nearby pub in Ireland, you might hear most young Irishmen refer to their fathers as their gaffer.

Sample Usage:

My gaffer and mum’s currently staying at Dromoland Castle Hotel in County Clare. I’ll be in their lodging place in two hours.

Irish Slang Word #21: Gander

What it means:

In Irish slang, gander means to quickly look at someone, or take a glance at. Its alternate meaning is of a foolish person or a simpleton. To take a gander at the beautiful golden beaches of Ireland is a fun and relaxing idea.

Sample Usage:

Annie and Agatha took a gander at the glassed jar that contained the ring of the late Pope John Paul II.

Irish Slang Word #22: Deadly or Savage

What it means:

A more extreme way of saying awesome in Irish slang is deadly or savage. Gamers actually use this term quite a lot, with the same meaning and context. On your next hiking or rock-climbing adventure with your buddies, you can use this term however you want.

Sample Usage:

Whoo! That was a tough climb.

Savage, mate. I’d never thought we’d make it to the top!

Irish Slang Word #23: Jo Maxi

Jo Maxi

What it means:

The term is derived from a teenage Irish entertainment show that commonly reported teenage issues. Jo Maxi simply means taxi.

Sample Usage:

Can you call me a Jo Maxi?

Irish Slang Word #24: Jacks

What it means:

In Ireland, if you have to use the toilet, you might need to go to the jacks.

Sample usage:

Caleb, help me find the jacks in this bar, quickly.

Irish Slang Word #25: Scarlet

What it means:

Whenever somebody feels embarrassed or flustered, some people’s cheeks turn red or scarlet. When you feel scarlet in Ireland, you feel embarrassed or mortified over something. It shows on your cheeks. It’s okay to feel scarlet if you ever accidentally pour an ale over a handsome, young lad in a pub.

Sample Usage:

I turned scarlet when he saw me picking my nose, ugh!

Irish Slang Word #26: Gaff

What it means:

In Irish slang words, if your parents are away for the night, or for a day or two, you go to someone’s gaff to have a party or a sleep-over. It generally means house, and more often used by Irish, Scottish, and English teenagers and young adults. It could also denote a place where cheap entertainment can be availed.

Sample Usage:

All of my teammates are going to Rodney’s free gaff!

Irish Slang Word #27: Make a hames

Make a hames

What it means:

Making a hames in Irish slang is equivalent to making a mess in US English slang. On your next trip to Ireland, you might want to avoid it.

Sample Usage:

You made a hames in and out of our hotel room!

Irish Slang Word #28: Tayto

What it means:

If Americans have fries, and English people from the UK have chips, in Ireland, you might want to order a tayto as a side dish. It commonly refers to chips or other potato-based finger foods. Scrumptious!

Sample Usage:

Lina, please order a chicken salad with some Tayto for me. Thanks.

Irish Slang Word #29: Storeen

What it means:

A lesser-known, archaic, but still used term of endearment in some literary references—it literally means ‘little treasure.’ The suffix ‘–een’ denotes something diminutive or little in size. If you value children for the stroreen that they are, or any animal or anything small that you value highly, then storeen might be an appropriate word to use. A two-day short trip around the best tourist spots in Ireland is quite a storeen.

Sample Usage:

I’ll never forget my stay in Ireland. It is my storeen.

Irish Slang Word #30: Cup of scald, or Cha

What it means:

A shorter and a fancier way of asking for an Irish local to have a cup of tea with you at your local tea shop is by asking them, Care for a cup of cha?

Sample Usage:

Care for a cup of cha? It’s just right across the block, and they serve delightful pastries, too.


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