Shrouded in a veil of mystery, Ireland entices and surprises all who step foot within its mystical boundaries. Fairy tales, stories, myths and legends rule the land along with stunning landscapes, many of which can be found on the Wild Atlantic Way. And when everything is said and done nothing quite beats a relaxing pint in a pub with the locales while listening to traditional Irish music. This Ireland travel guide will help you plan your next vacation.
Ireland Travel Guide: Fast Facts
- The local currency is the EURO and is around 1 euro to 1.15 USD
- Irish power voltage is 230 V 50 Hz; Power sockets G
- Driving in Ireland is done on the left-hand side of the road!
- Self-serve laundromats are not common. The most common type of laundry in Ireland is full-service drop-off facilities on a same or next day basis.
- Value added tax (VAT) is charged on purchases, such as meals at restaurants, shopping expenses and hotel accommodations. If you are resident of a non-European Union country, you can get a refund of this tax in certain participating shops. For more info on VAT refunds, click here.
- The Capital City of Ireland is Dublin – See the Best Things to do in Dublin
Top Packing Tips for Ireland Travel
Ireland's weather is mild throughout the year. In fact the country's weather can be summed up perfectly in three little words: mild, moist and changeable with lots of rainfall.
- Pack a rain coat – chances are that you will encounter rain no matter what month you travel. A light rain shell is highly recommended as it will combat the rain AND wind you will probably face in Ireland.
- Layers – When traveling to different climates remember that layering is the key to effortlessly transitioning from cold to hot climates or vice versa. For travel during winter months, make sure to bring a heavier coat as air frost can be common in certain areas.
- Footwear – Whether you are exploring Ireland's rocky countryside or spending the day discovering the country's cities by foot, expect to spend a lot of time on your feet. Pack a pair of lightweight, durable, waterproof and comfortable shoes and/or a pair of light boots with lugged soles and ankle support if you plan on doing a lot of hiking
- Classic Basic items – You do not need to be a fashionista to blend in. The key is in embracing neutral toned items that can be mixed and matched easily. Avoid logos, baseball caps, shorts, hoodies, flip-flops and running shoes as these items scream tourist!
Top Things to do in Ireland
- Take a Game of Thrones Tour – Much of the series was filmed in northern Ireland, so why not relive those TV moments in person?
- Kayak at Nighttime – Let your eyes adjust to the dark as you paddle underneath the stars in Country Cork
- Horseback Ride in Dingle – There is not better way to experience the quiet Irish countryside than to ride a horse into the hills.
- Try Coasteering – With all the cliffs and caves on Ireland’s Atlantic Coast, it was made for coasteering. Coasteering involves climbing, jumping, scrambling and swimming around the rock pools, cliffs and caves of the intertidal zone.
- Check out Giant's Causeway – whether you believe the scientific explanation or the legend of Fin McCool and the Giants Causeway, the sight of 40,000 or so pillars should not be missed.
- Visit the most photographed location in Northern Ireland – Lined with the twisted branches of beech trees which form an arch over the road, the Dark Hedges make a spectacular background for some epic photography sessions.
- Explore some of the best scenic views – driving the Wild Atlantic Way of Ireland takes a while and you will find that you end up pulling your car over every chance you get to take in the incredible scenic views. From the Cliffs of Moher to Dun Anegus – Aran Islands, the beauty of the Atlantic coast is mind blowing at every turn.