Advice for first time visitors to Ireland
Every year millions of people from all over the world visit Ireland – many of them are fulfilling a lifelong dream by doing so.
There is so much to see and do in Ireland, from beautiful scenery, to bustling cities, from fascinating historical sites to sunny beaches which are favourites of those wanting to relax or for surfers looking for a more action-packed holiday – there really is something for everyone.
We asked our Facebook followers if they had any advice for first time visitors to the Emerald Isle. Here are some of our favourite answers.
Laura Zarlenga: No hotels! Staying in a Bed and Breakfast is the best way to experience the real Ireland! We did 14 nights, rented a car and drove the entire coast, staying in a different BnB each night.
Lucy Downs: Dress in layers, have boots or waterproof comfy shoes, a jacket that wicks water. Visit pubs. You can also rent a cottage and get to know that area. It was much cheaper than hotels and b&bs Buy local. Unique wonderful items. Love my capes and wool blankets. Jewelry and local pottery. Dingle crystal. Buy a hat to wear that’s made there. Our 2 nd trip there our car we did get the extra ins. Avoided the $5000 credit hold and had worry free driving. It didn’t matter how close we got to those bushes. Try new foods. Stop in a rural pub where it’s probably only locals. They will be happy to talk w you and they tell great stories. If in Dublin. Take a taxi someplace. The cabbies like to talk and tell stories. Could be the highlight of your trip. Belfast is a foodie city. Listen carefully. I found them harder to understand but I think it was mutual. All part of the experience. Don’t rush the Irish. They do things at their own pace. You have to ask for the check. They won’t bring it unless you ask for it.
Cheryl Vergara: For those of you visiting Ireland for the first time, just know that Irish people do not know a stranger. We talk to everyone. You always feel welcome and never hesitate to ask for directions. Most of the time they won’t tell you how to get there they will show you. Best country ever if you want to get happy. ♥️ 😎
Rose McFie: I am from a tiny village near Dingle, so know all the local places. When taking my fiance last Christmas, I decided to go Airbnb. Found a lovely place with a view of my childhood home. Lady that rented it to us greeted us with a warm peat fire, homemade chicken and vegetable pie, mash and a fruit crumble. The fridge was stocked. She stayed and talked for a couple of hours and my love got to hear us converse in English and in Irish. He said he never felt so at home as he did on that vacation. We hiked with many layers on and ate meals in the pubs. Make sure you also visit the local bakers, the pastries, bread and meat pies will delight. Follow where us locals go, we know the best places!
Gayle Anstiss: We loved everything in Ireland. It’s like a little piece of heaven on earth. Toured throughout the country last year, from Dublin up to Giant Causeway, along the Wild Atlantic Way. Loved every little town and village we went through. The people are wonderful, welcoming and friendly. Can’t wait to go back. 🇨🇦 🇨🇦 ☘️ ☘️
Frank Kinsella: Best family vacation we have ever had. First week in Bray county Wicklow where we met family and made amazing new friends. Then rented a car and drove to Cork and stayed for 3 days and then on to Galway for another 2 days then back to Dublin. I never wanted to leave and it has been pulling on my heart strings ever since. Amazing country and wonderful people!!!
Barbara Kinney: Learn a bit of Irish (I did upon return as….) FIR on the loo does not mean female, and MNA does not mean male.😂
Thanks to everybody who offered their advice.
Tourist attractions in IrelandThe Blarney Stone Bru na Boinne Bunratty Castle The Burren Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge The Cliffs of Moher Croagh Patrick Dingle Peninsula Garnish Island The Giant's Causeway Glendalough The Guinness Storehouse Hill of Tara Lakes of Killarney Newgrange The Peace Bridge Ring of Kerry Wild Atlantic Way
Irish citiesBelfast Cork Derry Dublin Galway Limerick Waterford
Tourism articlesTripAdvisor's top 10 destinations in Ireland for 2015 Top holiday destinations in Ireland - as voted by the Irish Top holiday destinations in Ireland - as voted by tourists Ireland's favourite heritage site The most romantic city in Ireland Hidden gems in Ireland The top ten Irish beaches Where would Irish people take overseas guests? Tips for first time visitors to Ireland What not to do when visiting Ireland Ireland's top sacred pilgrimage sites Eight reasons why Irish pubs are Ireland's top attractions What do you like about Ireland? Local Irish pubs number one attraction for tourists Tourists happy with 'value for money' on visits to Ireland Video - initiative to promote 'Ireland's Ancient East' Ireland can boast the best 'cliff view' in the world Most visited tourist attractions in Ireland in 2014? Industry warned not to 'repeat the mistakes of the past' Dublin 'favourite worldwide city' for young travellers Which tourist attractions in Ireland made the Lonely Planet's ultimate guide? Dublin is one of the world's top three cities say Lonely Planet Ireland has three of the world's four friendliest cities