What the world likes most about Ireland

What are tourists' favouite things about Ireland?

As everyone knows, Ireland is a country that is blessed with several areas of natural beauty.It has millions of  visitors every year.

In fact, the number of visitors to Ireland every year is greater than the population of the country. Of course, with so many people across the world having Irish roots, many of the visitors come to visit family or at least to see where their family came from.

What are tourists' favouite things about Ireland?

Many more come for the vast array of attractions. We wondered what they enjoyed most so have compiled a list of the top 10 attractions in Ireland as voted by tourists.

To do so we checked out the holiday maker’s bible Trip Advisor to find which attractions in Ireland had the highest percentage of positive reviews.

Unfortunately, attractions such as The Lakes of Killarney and the Wild Atlantic Way didn’t have their own specific pages on Trip Advisor, which is a shame as they would have been a shoo-in for the top 10. However, companies that provide tours of these attractions were given 5 star reviews and 100% positive feedback.

The Guinness Storehouse – which is the most visited attraction in Ireland – failed to make the top 10 in terms of positive reviews on Trip Advisor.

Not that this means people had a bad experience there of course. Far from it, 80% of visitors left a positive review. It’s just that there were plenty of other places that were rated even higher.

Here is the top 10

10 – The Blarney Stone, 90% positive reviews. Located in Blarney castle, anybody who kisses the stone is said to get the ‘gift of the gab’.
Rod Daly wrote: “There was a lot to see here even in winter. The manor was closed but the castle and grounds were open. Plenty of stuff to take pictures of.

The walk to the top was narrow. After climbing those stairs leaning over to kiss the stone made me dizzy.”

More on the Blarney Stone

Giant's Causeway by Richard L
Giant’s Causeway by Richard L

9 – Giant’s Causeway, 90% positive reviews. Spectacular natural phenomenon in which a vast area of rock has been split into 40,000 columns of hexagonal segments.

Chiefmufuwrote: “A must see. Amazing. The causeway is somewhere I have always wanted to visit for years. It did not disappoint at all. Only wished I’d brought the kids as well. Be careful the wet rocks are slippy. The electronic guides are really good and make the trip all the more enjoyable.”

More on the Giant’s Causeway

8 – Garnish Island, 92% positive reviews. A small island of the coast of Co Cork thst features several peaceful walks and beautiful gardens.

artie67 wrote: “It was our pleasure to spend 2-3 hr. on Garnish Island admiring the beautifully themed gardens, cobblestone paths, scenery, and surprise camouflaged walls and doorways, that felt like hideaways in a different world.”

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7 – The Burren, 92% positive reviews. Historic and mysterious area. Contains monuments from several eras of history and it is also possible for plants from vastly different climates – arctic and Mediterranean – to grow there.

OsitaDeTejas wrote: “The Burren is such a cool geographic area. We went to the Burren National Park visitor centre in Corofin and took a free bus to the middle of the park. On the way, our driver gave us a history lesson about the area. We had a great hike, the view from the top of the hills is amazing.”

More on the Burren

6 – The Peace Bridge, 93% positive reviews. The Peace Bridge crosses the River Foyle in Derry/LondonDerry from the unionist ‘Waterside’ with the nationalist ‘Cityside’. It symbolises peace between the historically divided communities.

RedJezandLyn wrote: “A lovely and imaginative piece of engineering that was a pleasure to walk across. Anything that helps towards lasting peace in this beautiful but troubled city has to be admired.”

More on the Peace Bridge

Derry Peace Bridge NorthernCounties_CC3
The snaking Peace Bridge over River Foyle

5 – Brú na Bóinne, 93% positive reviews. Ancient site that contains several ‘passage graves’ that were built by people in prehistoric times for celebrated leaders. Older than the Egyptian pyramids.

AlexandraB9 wrote: “The tour guides were awesome and did a great job of painting the mystery behind how the tombs were built and why. We loved it so much that we jumped on the bus to Knowth next and checked out the smaller mound. Both were incredible – but if you are short on time go to Newgrange since you can actually go inside the tomb.”

More on Brú na Bóinne

4 – Cliffs of Moher, 93% positive reviews. One of the most famous attractions in Ireland with around one million visitors per year. The cliffs are striking and stand 700 feet high, stretching for five miles.

Josh – Liz W wrote: “The Cliffs of Moher will easily take your breath away. The Cliffs are a stunning sight to see as you as you walk over to the edge. Then look out in the distance and you will just a slight idea of how massive the cliffs really are.”

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3 – Dingle Peninsula, 96% positive reviews. Home to some of the most stunning areas of natural beauty on Ireland. Named the ‘Most beautiful place on Earth’ by Natural Geographic.

Mickael B wrote: “Beautiful views and amazing landscape ! You will spend all the day at the least and if you are a pictures lover, oh mannnnn… Bring a sofa with you!”

More on the Dingle Peninsula

Dingle Peninsula

2 – Glendalough, 96% positive reviews. An area of natural beauty surrounded by mountains, lakes and valleys. Also full of ancient monuments, some thought to have been built by St Kevin.

Patrick E wrote: “If you like history and walking, this is a place worth visiting. You have several choices of short, medium and long walks. The scenery is breath-taking.”

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1 – Croagh Patrick, 98% positive reviews. St Patrick is said to have fasted for 40 days and nights at the top of this mountain in Co Mayo. It is a popular religious pilgrimage and also features a natural phenomenon, the ‘Rolling Sun’ when from a certain angle the sun appears to slide down the mountain as it sets.

Dervz wrote: “A truly exhilarating experience this was! The hike itself is no small feat as it gets quite steep on the last ascent but the breathtaking views from the top make it all worth it.”

More on Croagh Patrick

View-from-the-top-of-Croagh-Patrick-of-the-Clew-Bay (phot Erin Hanrahan McGlynn)
View of the Clew Bay from top of Croagh Patrick (photo Erin Hanrahan McGlynn)

Surprisingly, there was no place in the top 10 for the beautiful Ring of Kerry, which just goes to show how much visitors enjoyed the other attractions. The Ring of Kerry actually finished in 11th place with 89% positive reviews.

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