Best Places to Visit in Ireland
Nothing can purify and rejuvenate your soul like a visit to the Emerald Isle. Ireland is home to some of the greenest and most breathtaking landscapes in the world and is filled with so many fascinating attractions that you’ll want to visit them.
From the jaw-dropping Cliffs of Moher to the bright lights of Dublin’s Grafton Street and the hallowed halls of Trinity College, you’ll find plenty to do in Ireland. The hard part will be choosing which stunning sights will be high on your must-see list.
Whether you want to spend your time indulging in Ireland’s myriad of outdoor activities (we mean horseback riding, waterfall walks, golf and sailing) or peruse the work of some of the country’s best-known artists at the National Museum and Gallery, you won’t be lost with a fun way to spend time without getting overwhelmed.
Have a look at our list of the Best Places to Visit in Ireland and make your trip enjoyable.
18 Best Places to Visit in Ireland
Here are the top 18 Most Beautiful and Best Places to Visit in Ireland:
1. Cliffs of Moher
So many superlative terms are used to describe the magnificent Cliffs of Moher that it’s hard to find the right word. It strikes me as dazzling and awe-inspiring, and indeed they are both utterly wild and rugged beauties. For those who have read before visiting the Emerald Isle, the cliffs will be familiar, as will the protagonists of countless postcards and guidebooks. However, no image can do them justice. This is one of Ireland’s top tourist attractions, and for good reason.
About one million people from all over the world visit the cliffs each year in neighboring County Clare, about an hour and a half drive from Galway. This is one of the most popular day trips from Dublin. They stretch for 8 kilometers across the Atlantic Ocean and rise about 214 meters at their highest point. Walk along the trails and experience the raw power of nature in its most glorious way.
Official website: www.cliffsofmoher.ie
2. Grafton Street, Dublin
Grafton Street is not only a great place to shop in Dublin, it is also home to street performers, florists and performance artists. You will also find countless places to stand and watch the wind blowing through the world. Cafe culture is coming to life in the capital, and you’d be forgiven for thinking you’re in Barcelona or Lisbon on a sunny day.
This is Dublin’s mall, but you don’t need to spend a fortune to visit it. Wherever you go, from the end of the street to the top of St. Up to Stephen’s Green you’ll find friendly, chatty service and entertainment. Grab a coffee at Bewley’s Grafton Street Café or enjoy the legendary Irish breakfast in the morning. Take time to walk along the many streets and avenues and see what you can find.
3. Killarney National Park and Muckross House & Gardens
When visiting the Kerry area, the 19th-century Muckross House, gardens, and heritage farm in the magnificent Killarney National Park should be at the top of your must-see list. This is considered one of the top tourist destinations in Ireland for many reasons; You have to visit them to discover them.
This former mansion is close to the shores of Lake Muckross, one of the three Killarney lakes world-famous for its splendor and beauty, radiating the splendor and grace of the past. While exploring, remember that Queen Victoria used to be here. In those days, royal visits were no small thing. Extensive renovations and re-landscaping took place in preparation and left no detail behind.
The house and gardens are a real treat and Jaunting Cars (Killarney’s famous horses and traps) will take you around the grounds. The site’s ancient farms are also worth a visit to experience how ordinary people once lived.
Killarney National Park and Lakes region are so scenic that any route through it will reveal beautiful views of lakes and mountains. West Killarney National Park’s highlight is the 11km journey through the picturesque Dunlo Gorge, a narrow rocky gorge carved out by glaciers at the end of the Ice Age. This cliff separates Purple Mountain and its foothills from Macgillycuddy’s Reeks.
Another highlight of this national heritage site is Ross Castle. Winding paths and bike paths are one of the best ways to see the park.
Address: Killarney National Park, Muckross, Killarney, Co. Kerry
Official website: www.killarneynationalpark.ie
4. The Book of Kells and Trinity College Dublin
Trinity College Dublin, Ireland’s oldest university, is one of the oldest gems in the country. Founded by Elizabeth I in 1592, Trinity is a world within a world. When you walk through the door and walk through the cobblestones, the modern, thriving city outside seems to disappear. A stroll through and around the land is a journey into the quiet world of academic pursuits through the ages.
Many shop and office workers eat lunch sandwiches here to escape the hustle and bustle outside during the summer months.
The college is also known for its priceless treasures. These include the wonderful Book of Kells (permanent exhibit) and the incredible Longhouse (the inspiration for the library in the first Harry Potter movie).
Address: Trinity College, Greene College, Dublin 2
5. Kilmainham Gaol, Dublin
Featured in many rebel songs and occupying a notorious dark place in Irish history, Kilmainham Gaol must be one of the top tourist destinations in Dublin for anyone interested in Ireland’s troubled past. The leaders of the 1916 uprising were brought here and executed in the prison garden after being convicted of treason. The only survivor was the future president of Ireland, Eamon De Valera, who did not suffer the same terrible fate due to his American citizenship.
Since 1796, the prison has been a dreary prison for those who have committed petty crimes such as not being able to pay the train fare, and for the hungry and needy during times of famine. In the eyes of the Irish, Kilmenham became an irreplaceable symbol of oppression and oppression.
A visit here will be eye-opening and will always be with you. The aforementioned courtyard is particularly chilling to the spine. In short, this is one of the must-see places in Ireland.
Address: Inchicore Road, Dublin 8
Official website: http://kilmainhamgaolmuseum.ie
6. The Ring of Kerry
If you’re in Kerry, take some time to explore the Ring of Kerry (Iveragh Peninsula), arguably Ireland’s most scenic route. While you can start anywhere along this spectacular 111-mile tour, most people tend to start in Kenmare or Killarney and naturally return to the same place.
The entire non-stop journey may take less than three hours, but that is unlikely to happen. Along the way are breathtaking views of the Atlantic Ocean, stunning islands, wild mountains and many picturesque villages.
This area of stunning natural beauty boasts an array of outdoor activities including golf, water sports on pristine beaches, cycling, hiking, horseback riding, and excellent freshwater and deep-sea fishing. For history buffs, there are the Ogham Stones, Iron Age forts and ancient monasteries, all set into a magnificent landscape canvas.
7. Glendalough, County Wicklow
Magical and mysterious, Glendalough is one of Ireland’s most important monasteries. 6th century St. Founded by Kevin, the settlement eventually evolved into what became known as a monastic city. For thousands of years, tourists have flocked to the valleys of these two lakes to absorb their rich history, breathtaking scenery, abundant wildlife, and fascinating archaeological finds.
The monastery’s ruins and well-preserved round tower are a delight to explore, and the surrounding woodlands and lakes are perfect for a leisurely stroll or picnic. There are marked nature trails to follow, and the visitor center has all the information you need to spend a day.
Address: Glendalough, Wicklow & Co.
8. Powerscourt House and Gardens, Co. Wicklow
Stunning views, tranquil lakeside walks, fascinating history and the fascinating backdrop of Sugarloaf Mountain are just some of the in-store treats when you visit this gorgeous home just 20km from Dublin.
Currently owned by the Slazenger family, the house sits on 47 acres of manicured grounds. Take some time to tour the rose garden and kitchen garden and discover the beautiful Italian gardens. There are over 200 species of trees, shrubs and flowers, the most moving of which is the tombstone and inscription where a loved family pet is buried.
The gardens have been landscaped for 150 years to create a property that harmoniously blends in with its surroundings. On site, in a former Palladian residence, there are craft and design shops and a great cafe/restaurant. It truly is one of Ireland’s most spectacular sights and one of the most popular days trips from Dublin.
Address: Enniskerry, Co. Wicklow
Official website: http://powerscourt.com/
9. Rock of Cashel
The Rock of Cashel, Ireland’s most visited heritage site, is star-studded with countless images of the Emerald Isle. Queen Elizabeth even visited the country by helicopter during her official visit to the country in 2011. Set on the limestone rock formations of the Golden Valley, this magnificent medieval complex includes the High Cross and Romanesque churches, a 12th-century round tower, a 15th-century castle, and a 13th-century Gothic cathedral.
The restored Priest Choir Hall is also here. Attractions include audio-visual shows and exhibits. It is also said to have once been the seat of the High King of Munster before the Norman invasion.
Address: Cashel, Co. Tipperary
10. National Museum of Ireland
It’s easy to spend a full day at the National Museum of Ireland, which is technically a collection of museums. On Merrion Street in Dublin 2, you’ll find a building dedicated to highlighting the country’s ‘natural history, ‘Art Deco and History’ at Dublin Collins Barracks, ‘Village Life’ in Mayo, and Dublin’s stunning Kildare Street ‘Archaeology’ Museum.
Depending on the buildings you visit, you can find interesting exhibits ranging from Irish antiquities to Irish folklife and Celtic art. National Museum of Ireland – Archeology With over 2 million historical artifacts, it contains fascinating finds including metalwork dating back to the Celtic Iron Age.
The National Museum of Ireland – Country Life is located in Turlough Park in Castlebar, housed in a unique building that seamlessly blends Victorian and contemporary architecture. Inside, you’ll find photographs, films, period furniture, and permanent exhibits, from Irish fireplaces and homes to community life, working on land and water.
The National Museum of Ireland – Decorative Arts and History are housed in the iconic Barracks and houses historical treasures such as ceramics, glassware, clothing, jewelry and coins.
The National Museum of Natural History of Ireland has more than 10,000 exhibits showcasing the country’s most popular wildlife, as well as interesting creatures from around the world.
Official website: https://www.museum.ie/en-ie/home
11. Blarney Castle and the Blarney Stone
Arguably Ireland’s most famous attraction and a must-see castle, the Blarney Stone sits atop the towers of Blarney Castle, not far from Cork. The stone is said to bestow famous Irish eloquence to those who dare to bow their heads and kiss it, but that’s not the only reason to visit Blarney Castle.
Blarney Castle, built over 600 years ago by the Irish chef Cormac McCarthy, can visit this huge stone structure ranging from towers to dungeons. Spacious gardens surround it, filled with stone features and hidden nooks. Blarney Woolen Mills is known for its sweaters and other knitwear and has a shop selling crystal, porcelain and other Irish souvenirs.
Official website: www.blarneycastle.ie
12. Kinsale, Co. Cork
Kinsale is steeped in history, set in a scenic seaside setting at the entrance to West Cork and has been attracting tourists for decades. It is one of Ireland’s most tourist-friendly cities.
The town has a distinctly Spanish feel, especially in the summer. This is not surprising, given that in 1601, three years after the defeat of the Spanish Armada, Spain sent an army to Ireland, most of which landed at Kinsale. This led to the British besieging the city and eventually defeating the Spanish and Irish armies with superior British military might.
Kinsale now attracts those who enjoy sailing, hiking, fishing, stunning scenery and great food. There are several restaurants in town serving very good seafood. A food festival is held every year, and a visit to the magnificent Fort Charles is not to be missed.
13. Dingle Peninsula and the Wild Atlantic Way
Part of the Wild Atlantic Way, the Dingle Peninsula, a 1,700-mile route around western Ireland and the adjacent coast, combines wild beauty, history, and insights into traditional Irish culture and language. This is no accident: the area is called the Gaeltacht, and the Irish language and culture are protected by government subsidies. While everyone speaks English, you will hear Welsh spoken and spoken and read the signs.
The peninsula ends at Cape Dunmore, the westernmost point of the Irish mainland, and is surrounded by some of the best beaches and jagged cliffs in Ireland. The stone houses that dot its open grounds were built by early medieval monks, and you’ll find more and more Bronze Age stelae.
14. Torc Waterfall, Killarney National Park
It’s easy to see why Toke Falls is one of the top tourist destinations in Ireland. Located in the heart of Killarney National Park, this 20-foot waterfall is one of the top attractions on the Ring of Kerry. The nearby car park is only 200 meters from the hotel, and the soothing sound of water can be heard, making walking easy for those with walking difficulties.
If you’re looking for a longer hike, continue on the Kerry Trail, a well-marked 200km hike to and from Killarney around the stunning Iveragh Peninsula.
Official website: https://www.killarneynationalpark.ie/visit-us/torc-waterfall/
15. St Stephen’s Green, Dublin
Loved by Dubliners, Calm St. Stephen’s Green has a colorful history and is a great place to relax, picnic or feed the ducks. Meanwhile, during the 1916 uprising, both sides granted park rangers special immunity. Hostilities end every day so that the ducks can be properly fed. This can only happen in Dublin.
Today, it has “green” as the locals know it, beautifully preserved gardens, duck ponds everywhere, picturesque bridges, recreation areas, mature trees for rest, and playgrounds.
The surrounding area includes many of Dublin’s leading Georgian buildings and the iconic Shelburne Hotel, founded in 1824, and many consider afternoon tea in the Mayor’s Lounge to be a veritable feast.
16. Bunratty Castle & Folk Park
A visit to the Shannon area would not be complete without a visit here. Dating back to 1425, this castle is Ireland’s best preserved medieval castle and was lovingly restored in the 1950s. The castle has a fine collection of 15th and 16th century furniture and tapestries that will take you back to the ancient Middle Ages.
The evening’s themed banquet was a lot of fun, but some mischievous guests risked being sent to the dungeon below. The impressive People’s Park brings Ireland to life a century ago. The People’s Park features more than 30 buildings in villages and rural settings with country shops, farmhouses and streets to explore. It’s fun for families and kids.
17. National Gallery of Ireland, Dublin
Founded by an Act of Parliament in 1854, the National Gallery of Ireland is a much-loved institution located in Dublin’s leafy Merrion Square. This magnificent gallery opened to the public in 1864 but has recently undergone extensive renovations, creating a more airy and bright space to house his extensive art collection. Don’t worry, the impressive 19th-century building is well preserved.
In addition to the picturesque architecture, inside you will find the most famous art collection in the country and the national painting collection of European Old Masters. Its convenient location in central Dublin makes it easy to shop and dine in the city’s best spots.
Even better than the impressive work in this gallery is the price: admission is free. With so many interesting pieces to check out, we recommend taking a few hours to fully explore it.
Address: Dublin Merrion Square West 2
Official website: https://www.nationalgallery.ie/
18. The English Market, Cork
No visit to Cork is complete without a trip to the UK market. It is ironic, however, that arguably one of Cork City’s best attractions includes the word “English” – people in Cork often see themselves as ideologically and culturally aligned with neighboring Britain. Dublin. However, they do have a special place in this quaint covered market, home to some of the best local produce, including the freshest seafood, handmade bread, and premium cheeses.
Although the unique entrance on Princes Street dates back to 1862, a market has existed on the site since the late 1700s. Queen Elizabeth gained worldwide fame recently when she made her first state visit the Republic of Ireland in 2011. A joke he shared with fisherman Pat O’Connell went viral.
Address: Princes Street, Cork (next to St. Patrick’s Street and Grand Parade)
Official website: www.englishmarket.ie
Hope you like our choice of the best places to visit in Ireland. If you think there are some more beautiful places to visit in Ireland, we should cover them. Write us below in the comment box.