You’re never short of incredible places to visit on the island of Ireland!
Looking for something unusual in Belfast? We’ve got you covered. For 150 years, Crumlin Road Gaol was one of the most intimidating places in Northern Ireland, housing over 25,000 prisoners. Today, it’s fascinating to visit, with guided tours describing over a century of history — and some paranormal experiences, too.
The Gobbins Cliff Path in County Antrim is a must for nature lovers. Sweeping metal arms arch over the water, waves splash up through perforated bridges, and sea birds cry overhead. One trip here is enough to show you why it bewitches modern visitors as much as it did those who walked this route 100 years ago.
A guided underground boat ride through the Marble Arch Caves UNESCO Global Geopark spanning counties Fermanagh and Cavan places you amidst 650 million years of history. Take in stunning views of blanket bogland and mountain scenery along the nearby Cuilcagh Boardwalk Trail.
In Dublin, the prestigious Trinity College houses the ancient Book of Kells, a 9th-century gospel filled with incredible, handpainted illustrations. The exhibition relocates to the Printing House in October 2023 while the Long Room Library is restored – so now is your chance to see it in its original setting!
Ulysses fans should head to Dublin’s Sandycove to explore the James Joyce Tower & Museum and its letters, photographs and other memorabilia. This free-entry experience is in a Martello tower, the landmark itself featured in Ulysses.
In Ireland’s Ancient East, animal-lovers will adore visiting the Irish National Stud & Gardens in County Kildare. Equine legends are born and bred here, with 250 foals welcomed into the world every spring. You’ll also enjoy the charming Japanese Gardens, a marvel of horticultural skill.
In Ireland’s Hidden Heartlands, visit Birr Castle’s Science Centre to discover the fascinating ties this stronghold has with the stars. It is the home of the “Leviathan” – once the world’s largest telescope. Back in the early 1840s, the third Earl of Rosse designed this giant that now sits at the heart of the incredible demesne.
A gem of County Roscommon, Strokestown Park offers amazing insight into famine times with over 55,000 historic documents and artifacts that give visitors invaluable knowledge of Ireland’s history and heritage.
In County Donegal along the Wild Atlantic Way you’ll encounter some of the highest sea cliffs in Europe. The is packed full of local history and culture, including locally made knitwear and artworks. And then of course, there are the iconic cliffs themselves – all 609m (1,998 ft) of them!
In County Donegal, visit Fanad Lighthouse, whose light has shone over the wild Atlantic for over 200 years. The Visitor Reception Centre houses an exhibition highlighting the stories of Fanad Head; visitors can even book to stay overnight in the former lighthouse keepers’ cottages.
Which locations in Ireland are at the top of your must-see list?