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10 things you need to do and see on your visit to Ireland

For far too long now, you’ve probably been listening to friends and colleagues talk about their incredible vacations in Ireland?

Giant’s Causeway, the Dingle Peninsula, the Cliffs of Moher, the taste of real Irish Guinness; you’ve heard so much about what Ireland has to offer, so the time has come to make 2021 the year when you finally treat yourself to the trip of a lifetime!

But to tease your senses and make you want to book even more, we thought we’d put together a list of 10 of the best things to see and do in Ireland that will give you the memories of a  lifetime, not to mention the bragging rights when you return home!

1. Enjoy a creamy pint of Guinness in the oldest pub in the world!
Yes, that’s right: Sean’s Bar in Athlone dates back to 900 A.D; pretty incredible when you consider the USA itself is less than 250 years old! This authentic Irish pub takes you back in time and is home to some of the best traditional music sessions you’ll find anywhere; it’s even listed in “25 of the Most Incredible Bars in the World” and “50 Bars to Blow Your Mind” published by the Lonely Planet! 

2. Experience the hidden gems of Ireland’s hidden heartlands!
On your trip of a lifetime, you’ll want to see what the real Ireland has to offer, off the beaten tourist trail. Book an ‘off the beaten track’ travel adventure with Rural Adventure tours, and you’ll get to kayak in waterways, see local towns and villages that are often by-passed, enjoy treks and trails, and enjoy the relaxing pace of life that’s unique to rural Ireland.

3. Experience real Irish traditional in the company of locals
No trip to Ireland would ever be complete without experiencing the joy of hearing traditional Irish music sessions played by local musicians who are often carrying on a musical tradition that goes back generations. Because Irish traditional music involves indigenous instruments such as the Harp, the tin whistle, the bodhran, and the Uileann pipes, it is as important to Irish culture today as it was to the Celts who first brought it to our shores almost 2,0000 years ago. 

4. Visit historic Belfast City
With its complex and fascinating history, Belfast has evolved from a city ravaged by years of conflict conflict to a bustling, cosmopolitan city that’s home to some of the most exciting visitor attractions and tours you’ll find anywhere. Home to the world’s most famous ship, you can explore the Titanic Visitor experience, visit ‘Game of Thrones’ locations, take the famous ‘black cab’ tour showing the city’s fascinating history, and enjoy some of the best restaurants Ireland has to offer.

5. Visit Connemara National Park
As well as being home to ‘The Quiet Man’ movie, Connemara is world-famous for its stunningly unique scenery. With its ancient and oft-photographed stone walls that dominate the landscape and a National Park featuring 2000 hectares of mountains, bogs, and forests, you can enjoy the best of what this world-famous place has to offer with Rural Adventure Tours.

6. Visit the Ring of Kerry and Kerry National Park
No trip to Ireland could ever be complete without a visit to the ‘Kingdom’ of Kerry, with its spectacular lakes, dramatic headlands, and exhilarating mountain drives that offer the most awe-inspiring coastal views. Amongst many other things, you can visit the National Park in Killarney, enjoy the spectacular views of the Ring of Kerry, experience the pubs and cuisine of Dingle, and marvel at the incredible coastal scenery of the Slea Head Drive. 

7. Experience the majestic Cliffs of Moher
With its incredible attractions, rich traditional music culture, and stunning coastal scenery, Co. Clare provides the authentic Irish visitor experience that will replenish your soul and linger long in your memory. Experience the stunning scenery at the Cliffs of Moher, learn all about Irish culture and tradition at Bunratty Castle and Folk Park, enjoy the freedom of the beautiful Burren UNESCO Geopark, and explore the unique Doolin Caves, complete with the largest free-hanging stalactite in Europe!

8. Visit iconic ‘Game of Thrones’ locations!
If you’re a ‘Game of Thrones’ fan, you won’t need us to tell you that Northern Ireland is the home of ‘Thrones.’ Take a tour of the North Antrim Coast to experience the world-famous Giant’s Causeway, as well as visit some of the many famous ‘thrones’ locations, including the Dark Hedges, Cushendun Caves (Melisandre’s Cave), Ballintoy Beach (Iron Islands), and Dunluce Castle (Thrones Castle). Oh, and since these attractions are all on the road to Bushmills, you’ll get to take a tour of this famous Irish distillery too!

9. Visit a ‘Gaeltacht’ area
While English is the most commonly spoken language in Ireland, Irish remains the country’s first official language; and is still the first language in Irish speaking (‘Gaeltacht’) communities located along the Western seaboard. Book a ‘5-day North Coat and Heartlands Tour with Rural Adventure, and you’ll get to visit the beautiful Gaeltacht village of Gweedore in the heart of Donegal and hear the locals speaking in their native tongue within their community.

10. Travel the Wild Atlantic Way
Hugging the coastline along the Atlantic shore, the Wild Atlantic Way is Ireland’s most spectacular coastal route. Comprising 1600 miles, it twists and turns all the way from the beautiful Inishowen Peninsula in the North to the picturesque seaside-and-sailboats town of Kinsale, Co. Cork. This route allows you to experience the raw, rugged beauty of rural Ireland, witness the tremendous power of the Atlantic up close, and marvel at the tiny rural villages and communities that continue to carry on the rural traditions of their forefathers.

Are you looking for the perfect private / family tour of Ireland? Or are you, perhaps, thinking of traveling solo and joining one of our small group tours? Whatever your travel situation might be, Rural Adventure Ireland specializes in small group tours of Ireland that show travelers the real Ireland, away from the well-worn tourist track.

To discuss your Ireland vacation requirements or to find out more about how we can make your trip to Ireland the vacation of a lifetime, contact us today!