Ireland is one of the most beautiful travel destinations in Europe, possibly even the world. There are various vibrant cities you can visit, a stunning countryside with tiny villages, and awe-inspiring cliffs along the western side of the island. Ireland has various UNESCO recognized World Heritage sites that contain thousands of years of history, along with the history of the divide between the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland.
Skellig Michael, County Kerry
While this destination is lesser known and a bit more difficult to travel to than the others on this list, it’s certainly worth it. This island is labeled a UNESCO World Heritage site and only a few hundred visitors are allowed each day. Regular tours aren’t offered year round, but during the summer months you can hire a local fisherman to take you out to the island. Hundreds of stone steps twist up toward the top of the windswept rock, where a cluster of stone huts remain, the past homes of Christian monks in the sixth century, who braved the harsh conditions to live in solitude. A more modern fact is that the ending of the most recent Star Wars movie was filmed on this site.
Dublin contains a nearly endless amount of amazing sights and rich cultural history. You can head to Trinity College to examine the beautiful architecture and learn about the place where famous authors and artists were educated. You can also take the time to see the Book of Kells and Trinity Library. Or, you can tour the Guinness factory, go on a literary pub crawl, and stop by Christ Church Cathedral. Walk the same streets as James Joyce and Samuel Beckett and soak up the history.
This Abbey was once a castle, but was converted into an abbey for nuns who fled Belgium during WWI. The castle was initially a gift from Mitchel Henry to his young wife, who unfortunately died at a young age. He never remarried. Once the castle became an abbey, the nuns ran a successful girls’ boarding school on the premises for years. The architecture is stunning and worth the visit, especially because you get to travel through the Irish countryside as well.
This place is the only UNESCO World Heritage site in Northern Ireland. This site is made of around 40,000 polygonal basalt rock columns that was formed almost 60 million years ago by ancient volcanic activity. The Causeway stretches along the Northern Irish coastline, giving tourists a unique chance to tread on a stunning feat of nature. A local legend exists that the Causeway is a result of a fight between two giants.
Cliffs of Moher
These cliffs are likely Ireland’s most popular natural attraction and with good reason. They soar above the ocean on the western side of Ireland and offer a stunning view, whether it’s of the Aran Islands from the top of the cliffs, or on a boat riding the waves toward the base of the cliffs. On a clear day, you can see for miles and appreciate the lush green of the countryside and the deep blue of the water surrounding you