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ireland castles panorama

REPUBLIC OF IRELAND

The Republic of Ireland occupies most of the island of Ireland. Its capital, Dublin, is the birthplace of writers like Oscar Wilde. It is the home of Guinness Beer and the 9th Century Book of Kells and other illustrated manuscripts are on show in Dublin’s Trinity College Library. Dubbed the "Emerald Isle”, it has lush green landscapes and idyllic towns and is dotted with castles around the country. Lovingly known as the Garden of Ireland, County Wicklow on the country’s east coast is one of its most beautiful areas, comprised of rolling mountains, pristine beaches and numerous historic monuments. It’s also home to the country’s highest waterfall and to the supposed landing site of Saint Patrick.

Waterford is a seaport and the oldest city in the country founded by Vikings in 914 A.D. The Waterford Medieval Museum of Treasures displays local archaeological finds. The renowned glass manufacturer, Waterford Crystal originated here in 1783. Today the company’s facility near the historic district offers factory tours.

The Rock of Cashel, found in County Tipperary is an iconic ecclesiastical site and one of Ireland’s top attractions. The group of medieval buildings located near the centre of Cashel Town offer stunning vistas of the surround Ancient Kings, patron Saints and unparalleled beauty.

Cork is the second largest city in Ireland sitting on an island in the middle of the River Lee. It has stylish riverside walks, quirky museums and an 18th Century food market. Soaring to 214 metres, the Cliffs of Moher reach southward towards County Cork and Kerry. As the sea spray fills the air with the invigorating freshness of the Wild Atlantic Way. The Doolin Cliff Walk leads you down the full length of the trail to an informative visitor centre, which is set into the hillside like a hobbit house.

The Burren is a region of County Clare. It has a compelling karst landscape of bedrock incorporating a vast cracked pavement of glacial era limestone, with cliffs and caves, fossils and archaeological sites. The Burren has a poetic beauty that has captivated many hearts and minds of poets, painters and writers. Bunratty Castle is a large 15th Century tower house in County Clare and is located in the centre of Bunratty Village along with the adjoining folk park. Set on 26 acres of unspoilt countryside it is a living village in a rural setting.

Killarney is a vibrant town on the shores of Lough Leane in County Kerry. It is one of the stops on the 179 km circular Ring of Kerry scenic drive, which takes in some of the nicest rugged and verdant coastal landscapes and seaside villages. It is also the start and finish point for the 200 km Kerry Way walking trail. The town's 19th Century buildings include St. Mary’s Cathedral. Across the bridge from the Cathedral is Killarney National Park. The Victorian Muckross House, the Gardens and Traditional Farms are located within in the park.

Limerick is situated on the River Shannon, in Munster province in the south of the country. Its compact 17th Century Old Town is known for the medieval era St. Mary’s Cathedral and St. John’s Square, which is lined with Georgian townhouses. Standing along the River Shannon, the 13th Century King John’s Castle is one of the city’s most recognisable sites.

The Bohemian City of Galway is situated on the west coast where the River Corrib meets the Atlantic Ocean. The city has a love of traditional Irish folk music, bustling streets, old pubs and age old alleyways. Connemara is a place of legend, folklore and profound beauty. Bounded by the Atlantic and set within a particularly scenic corner of County Galway, the region is famous for its wild terrain and soft colours.

 

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