THINKING OF IRELAND?

TRAVEL – TOM SMITH

It is March and all thoughts turn to Ireland.  Perched on the northwest tip of Europe, this is the one place in the world where even time getting lost will be worthwhile… With ancient myths and legends to uncover, amazing landscapes to explore and locals who will be more than happy to reveal our hidden gems, just go where the island of Ireland takes you. Guaranteed, you’ll return home with memories that will last a lifetime.

For the best slice of life in Ireland I recommend going to a pub……there is one in every little village in Ireland.

The pub lies at the heart of cultural, social and musical life in Ireland. Not just places to have a drink, in an Irish pub you can philosophize on the meaning of life, ruminate on global politics, listen to a poetry reading, tap your feet to a traditional session, feast on delicious food or just enjoy the quiet settling of a pint of Guinness in front of a crackling fire. Sit at the bar if you fancy chatting to the locals, or hole yourself up in one of the old snugs – private little spaces, which were historically designed just for the ladies.

The Irish love a good excuse for a party. The country is legendary for its “craic”, and “fleadhs“, festivals and fairs are a massive part of cultural life whether it’s the gastronomic delights of the Kinsale Gourmet Festival or the high-brow Dublin Theatre Festival. If you’re looking for something unique then head to the Lisdoonvarna Matchmaking Festival. It’s Europe’s biggest singles event. Puck Fair in Kerry, where a goat is crowned king, is well worth a trip, while the Ould Lammas Fair in North Antrim draws crowds from across the globe.

Whether you’ve been to Ireland before or just dreamed of visiting, 2013 offers an unforgettable opportunity for travelers to the emerald isle.  The Gathering-a countrywide and yearlong celebration of Celtic culture – is not only a reunion for those with Irish ancestry, but also a warm welcome for Ireland’s friends from around the world.  The way you visit Ireland is all up to you, here in my travel shop I have such a variety of escorted tours, Golf vacations, Pubs and Music Tour, Irish B&B, or independent trips finding that perfect cottage in the Irish countryside.  It is such a self-service country which means so easy to travel.  Oh yes the best months of the year to travel would be April, May and June and then September and October.

Carlingford, Ireland

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