Ireland Travel Guide
Ireland is known for its lovely green countryside and interesting cities. Green fields, dramatic ocean side cliffs and inland mountains are complimented by old castles, ancient sights, and quaint villages. In cities such as Dublin visitors will see a country in transition as traditional old buildings stand beside modern architecture. Tourists are drawn here for a myriad of reasons and few leave disappointed.
Most visitors will find themselves in Dublin at some point during their trip. As the capital city, this is the cultural heart of Ireland, with some of the best museums and galleries in the country, along with fine restaurants and great hotels. Some of the city's main attractions include the National Museum of Ireland, the Old Library at Trinity College, the National Gallery, and numerous historical buildings like the Bank of Ireland and the King's Inn.
Other places of interest include Cork and Kilkenny. Located in southeastern Ireland, Kilkenny has an old world feel, with narrow twisting streets, and old Georgian homes. Some of the sightseeing points are the 16th C Rothe House and St Canice's Cathedral, one of the finest in all of Ireland. Outside of Kilkenny are the 12th C Jerpoint Abbey, the Kilcooly Abbey, and the Dunmore Cave.
Cork, like Dublin is a mix of old and new, and boasts of a strong cultural scene. This port city has numerous cultural institutions and a prominent college. St Ann's Shandon is one of the city's landmark structures, with a 36 m high tower with eight bells. Visitors can enjoy the view and even ring the bells. Joined to Cork by a bridge is Fota Island, with a wildlife park and arboretum.
Galway and the surrounding area is another beautiful area full of history. There is evidence of settlement here from ancient times. A castle was first built here in the 12th C, at which time the town's long history began. The 16th C Lynch's Castle and the 14th C St Nicholas Church are both National Monuments and important sights in the city. Other impressive places along Galway Bay are the 17th C Dunguaire Castle looking out over the water, and the resort town of Spiddal, with lovely views.