Some unique experiences in Ireland

Ireland is known for its majestic coastline, rolling pastures and green hills, its rich literary history, its pubs and its beer.  Ireland is a wonderful vacation and honeymoon destination for those travelers who want to combine history with nature and culture.

There are some unique experiences that you can have in Ireland which you might not be able to do elsewhere.

Spend a night in a castle

ashford castle

According to Garreth Cooke, a private tour operator,

“Ireland is well known for its castle hotels which offer an enchanting experience. Dromoland Castle and Ashford Castle are Ireland’s leading castles. Both are five star hotels and at one time were sister castles. Dromoland is my personal favorite and my wife’s also – we got engaged there! Ashford Castle is a 13th century castle located in perhaps the most idyllic setting of all the castles in Ireland, along the shores of Lough Corrib in County Mayo. Dromoland Castle is a 16th century castle and was once the royal seat of the O’Brien Clan.”

“By law the structure of the buildings must be preserved so the layout of the rooms and common areas is not what everyone might expect. Castles like Dromoland and Ashford are vast estates of land with excellent facilities one would expect from a five star hotel. My personal recommendation would be to enjoy the grounds, indulge in the excellent cuisine, delights of afternoon tea and most of all use your stay in one of these castles to relax. While staying in a castle keep your sightseeing to half days and get the most out of your experience by spending quality time exploring and reading about the history of Ireland’s famous castles.”

Start your day with a real Irish Breakfast

“It’s very unusual for breakfast not to be included in your hotel rate. The traditional breakfast is something the locals tend to eat on a Sunday. For visitors it’s served daily as standard fare. Expect sausages, rashers (bacon), mushrooms, tomato, eggs, black and white pudding (be daring and try; they are delicious!) and of course the Irish ‘brown bread’ which is the healthy part of the breakfast to balance the guilty with the good. Black pudding is also known as blood pudding and white pudding is similar to Scottish haggis but 100% pork. If this is not your cup of tea as we say, there are options such as porridge with a drizzle of Irish mist and honey and of course local smoked salmon with scrambled eggs. Enjoy!”


Try Whiskey and Beer

“Irish Whiskey such as Jameson, Middleton and Bushmills are held in high regard by whisky/whiskey connoisseurs. The distillery tours at each of these are enjoyable even to those who can’t palate the taste. Bushmills celebrated being the oldest officially licensed distillery in 2008 – 400 years. Tours of distilleries take 45 minutes on average and the visitor is taken through the entire production process right through to a tasting at the end of the tour. Private whiskey tasting can be arranged and experiencing a tasting with an expert is wonderful – a real awakening as to how the tongue and taste buds work!”

“Trying a Guinness is a must in Ireland. You can order a half pint and test the waters if the full pint looks daunting. They say there is ‘eatin and drinkin’ in a good Guinness. Some people try Guinness with the tiniest drop of black currant syrup. Towns such as Killarney in County Kerry or Doolin in County Clare are famous for pubs and traditional music on summer evenings or Sunday afternoons. The town of Dingle once had 50+ pubs and a pub crawl here was not for the light weights! In Ireland we are social drinkers and its one of the things we do quite well. If you accept a drink from someone in Ireland it is customary to buy a round back for your new friend!”

At My Vacation Lady, we believe in creating your vacation or honeymoon experience.  You may not visit Ireland again so isn’t it worth it to really experience the country rather than just see it through the window of a bus?

If you are more of a  traveler who likes to experience and see and do rather than just drive past sites, My Vacation Lady might be the perfect fit to help plan  your next vacation or your dream honeymoon.  Contact us and we can help you plan an experiential vacation or honeymoon.

About the Author:

Mindy Gilbert of My Vacation Lady has been helping clients, just like you, plan their dream vacations, cruises and honeymoons since 1994.