The 10 best places in Ireland that everyone should visit at least once

Cliffs, valleys, parks, and mountains. Plan your trip to Ireland’s most scenic and stunning landscapes, housed in all parts of the country.

When summer comes, and the sun splits the skies, it’s normal behaviour for people to jet off to a foreign destination to enjoy the better weather. It is easy to forget just how beautiful a country the Emerald Isle really is and to overlook these famous and best places to visit in Ireland.

The Emerald Isle has all you need. From all provinces and all corners of the country, there are boundless places to come and see. Here are ten of the best places in Ireland that everyone should visit once.

10. Dingle Peninsula – the best of the west

The Dingle Peninsula is located on Ireland’s southwest Atlantic coast, the northernmost of County Kerry’s peninsulas, ending at Dunmore Head, the westernmost part of the Emerald Isle.

Encircling the town of Dingle, the peninsula is one of the most scenic routes in all of Ireland, hugging Ireland’s coastline and being dotted with remnants of Irish history.

9. Glenveagh National Park – Donegal in style

Donegal has an endless list of places that could be on this list, but Glenveagh National Park, located in the north of the county, is, without doubt, one of the best places everyone should visit in Ireland.

It is the country’s second-largest national park, and is fitted with scenic walking trails that concludes with the majestic Lough Veagh and Glenveagh Castle, an 18th-century creation.

8. Slieve League – the pinnacle of Ireland

While the Cliffs of Moher often steal the spotlight, what can’t be looked over is the Slieve League mountains and cliffs resting on the Atlantic coast of County Donegal, a true gem and one of the most famous places in all of Ireland.

Amongst the highest cliffs in all of Europe, Slieve League reaches a jaw-dropping 609 metres high, almost three times the size of the Cliffs of Moher.

7. Connemara National Park – the wild west

One of the most unique spots in Ireland, the Connemara National Park in County Galway stretches a staggering 2,957 acres across bogland, mountains, grasslands, and forests. It earns its spot as one of the places you must visit in Ireland.

The famous collection of the ‘Twelve Bens’, the park’s domineering mountains, provide the perfect cover to the trails below and the animals that inhabit the area, such as ponies, red deer, and a vast rainbow of birdlife.

6. Mourne Mountains – truly one of the best places in Ireland

The Mourne Mountains are another of the best places to visit in Ireland, be sure to give them a visit.

The Mourne Mountains in County Down are the highest in the north of Ireland, with its highest peak, Slieve Donard, standing at an incredible 853 metres, visible from as far as Belfast, 50 km away. They are another of the most famous places in Ireland.

The mountains are split into two zones; the Eastern, or ‘High’ Mournes, or the Western, or ‘Low’ Mournes, both blessed with beautiful views epitomised by the Newcastle coastline from the peak of the Mountain.

5. Skellig Islands – a trip to the Atlantic

Looking for another of the best places to visit in Ireland, check out the Skellig Islands.

The Skellig Islands, located about 13 km west of the coast of Kerry, are two small, uninhabited islands that grapple with the rocky waters of the Atlantic and are a must-visit.

One of the islands, Skellig Michael, is still home to an early Christian monastery, preserving Irish history, and can be reached by steep steps built on the island.

4. Glendalough – Ireland’s Ancient East

Glendalough is another of the best places to visit in Ireland, give it a go.

One of the most beautiful places to visit in Ireland is Glendalough in County Wicklow. It’s posted in the heart of the Wicklow Mountains. It is a bearer of Irish history with the monastic city, which includes an Early Medieval monastic settlement built in the 6th century.

You will also be in awe of the ‘valley of the two lakes’ for its vast scenery and abundant wildlife. It is the main reason why you need to see Ireland’s Ancient East.

3. Cliffs of Moher – Ireland’s premier tourist destination

The Cliffs of Moher are another of the best places to visit in Ireland.

The most famous cliffs in Ireland, the Cliffs of Moher, run 14 km along the County Clare coastline and is perhaps Ireland’s number one tourist destination, and for good reason.

The highest point of the cliffs stands at 214 metres, slightly north of O’Brien’s Tower, a round stone tower near the midpoint of the cliffs built way back in 1835.

2. The Giant’s Causeway – mythological Ireland

One of the best places to visit in Ireland is the Giant's Causeway.

The Giant’s Causeway was Ireland’s first UNESCO World Heritage Site, and this is no surprise. Found in North Antrim, the Causeway is a natural construction of 40,000 basalt columns.

The Causeway is memorialised in Irish mythology and will continue to play a premier role in Irish tourism for years and years to come.

1. Ring of Kerry – encircle the heart of Kerry

The Ring of Kerry is one of the best places to visit in Ireland.

Arguably one of the most famous places in Ireland, and the best place that you must visit in Ireland at least once, is the Ring of Kerry. This sensational, all-encompassing, 179 km-long circular route teases rural villages and borders elegant coastal landscapes.

Non-stop, it would take you three and a half hours to drive through, but we recommend you do it slowly and make the most of the fascinating scenes that surround you.

For anyone planning a trip to the Emerald Isle, make sure you visit at least one of these ten spots. They are the best Ireland has to offer and rival any summer vacation you could think of.

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Dan O'Muirigh is a keen travel writer from Belfast, County Antrim. He is a passionate sports man who plays Gaelic football for Naomh Gall GAC. He recently graduated with a degree in Law but instead wants to pursue a career in writing. He loves Ireland and believes the island offers something for everyone. He has immersed himself into the country by playing Irish sports, taking part in the culture and learning the Irish language.