Imagine a country where nature is so green and quiet, accompanied by only the sound of cows and their calves, that it makes you want to rest in this peaceful and green environment.
Ireland is that place: where the air is clean and the birds do not have to breathe the smoke that exists in other parts of the globe.
It is another of our destinations in Travelling Europe, worthy to visit. Ireland is where also many have found a better job with better pay than in their homelands.
Ireland is located in the Atlantic Ocean in the northwest of Europe, and the island comprises Northern Ireland, which is part of the UK, and the country of Ireland (an independent country also known as the Republic of Ireland), which occupies the larger part of the island.
Two official languages
Ireland belongs to the group of countries where there are two official languages; Irish (which together with other languages belongs to the Celtic language) and English. So if you want to study or learn English in Ireland, here you can find one of the best deals in Europe to learn it. The plentiful availablity of English courses in Ireland, promoted by its many language schools, will help you to choose the one that best fits you.
Who does not know of Dublin? It is one of the most important cities where significant events in the country take place, the National Parliament (Oireachtas) is located and is the most populous city in Ireland.
If you decide to travel to Ireland, surely you shouldn´t miss this European capital, the largest city in Ireland: Dublin. Among the many things you will see there are O'Connell Street with its numerous shops, bars and restaurants, Trinity College with the popularity that comes from being the oldest university in Ireland and, among others, Dublin Castle. Other cities in Ireland are interesting and important; for example, Cork, Galway, Limerick and Waterford.
In 1973 Ireland joined the European Union. The official currency in Ireland is the euro, so if you are travelling from another country in the euro area you have the advantage because you will not need to change your currency.
The Weather in Ireland
The weather is quite calm although with much precipitation in the form of rain. Wind and humidity characterise the climate of Ireland since its major climatic influence comes from the Atlantic Ocean. The weather varies depending on which part of the country you are in, but generally winters are not too cold (-2º C) and summers are mild (25º C).
Religion, Culture and Irish folk
Most Irish people are believers and over 85% declare themselves Christians − Catholic. Every year on 17 March, St Patrick’s Day, the patron saint is remembered for being the one who brought Christianity to Ireland in the 5th century. It is a well-known festival worldwide that is celebrated throughout the country but especially in Dublin.
There are also religious minorities such as the Jewish community that also have a place in this country.
Irish culture is much alive and has been contributed to by its many writers who left their great works for the whole of Ireland; George Bernard Shaw, Samuel Beckett and James Joyce are read every day in schools, universities and other institutions worldwide.
Ireland brought us too a large amount of traditional music and others that we cannot fail to recall such as U2, The Cranberries, The Dubliners and The Corrs.
Bars and restaurants can be found in every corner of the country. Here they serve their famous whiskey, Guinness, Baileys or Irish beer. Come and taste it: it’s worth it. Try the local drinks and compare them with those of your own country. A pint of Guiness − or better a beer of your country? No way!
A typical course of the Irish cuisine is boxty, a type of potato pancake consisting of fried or raw potatoes mixed with flour and yeast. And do try the Irish soda farls – soda flat bread.
If you plan to travel around Ireland, and we must tell you that it is most interesting to do so, we encourage you to do it, definitely. You will find much love and the kindness that characterises the Irish people with their cheerful character that contrasts with when the bad weather appears, often in the form of abundant rainfall. Come with your luggage and go back home with a suitcase full of good memories.
• In Ireland, the type of plug used for electricity is different than in continental Europe, as also happens in the UK. If you are from another country, be prepared and bring along an adapter plug.
• Ireland is fairly expensive compared to other countries. Keep this in mind when planning your travel budget.
• Do not forget your umbrella! And a raincoat of some type. In Ireland you never know when it will rain (or when it will stop raining!).
• If possible, choose your stay in Ireland in months other than July or August. Avoid the many people holidaying on those dates in the country − if you can be flexible with your work.
Foto 1 y 2: © Tourism Ireland, Chris Hill
Foto 3: © Tourism Ireland, Duby Tall
Foto 4: © Tourism Ireland, Gardiner Mitchell
Editing by: Catherine Parker