Some of the Best Chapter 23

Here, I’m going to mention a few things worth checking out. Hopefully I will help you narrow down your options.


Don’t you hate trying to gather information on something to pick the best locations, sights and activities to see? It is chaotic at times. I have been surfing the net to find out the best of everything including castles, hotels, spas, landscape locations, cities, museums & art galleries, parks, cultural sites and sacred sites.

Irish Castles

From brooding ruins on windswept hills to restored masterpieces, Ireland’s castles can be looked at, walked through, clambered over, dined in – even slept in! But how did it start?

Gaelic Clans used to live within walled fortifications which you can see in the Stone Forts on the Aran Islands, the community lived within the walls. Throughout history there has been conflict, therefore you could never be sure if you were safe… This led to the redevelopment of forts into stronger castles. In medieval times castles were also made to show off power. Over time the walls served different purposes.


Here are 7 of the best castles in Ireland…

Kilkenny Castle

Rising above the River Nore it is a real treat for your eyes, this is one of Ireland’s most visited castles. Located in South-East Ireland

Rock Of Cashel

Known as St. Patrick’s Rock, which is one of the most remarkable collections of Celtic art and medieval architecture to be found anywhere in Europe. The word ‘Cashel’ means ‘fortress’ which suits the castles historical significance. Located in North Tipperary.

Kylemore Abbey Castle

The dramatic landscape and iconic image of a gothic castle reflected in a Connemara lake and beautiful gardens has made Kylemore Abbey world-famous and it is now one of the largest tourist attraction in the west of Ireland. Located in Galway.

Ashford Castle

We cannot talk about castles without mentioning Ashford Castles. It has the perfect romance setting, beside a lake and surrounded by forestry and perfectly kept gardens, when you see it you will understand why Courteney Cox decided to marry here. Located in Galway.

Luttrellstown Castle

Located on the outskirts of Dublin, this is where David Beckham and Victoria Adams tied the knot. Surrounded by 560 acres of forestry. Host to an 18 hole golf course. Red ivy climbing up the walls, this castle screams luxury.

Lismore Castle

Located in Waterford. Henry II visited Lismore in 1171 and chose a site for a castle, situated in a panoramic position overlooking the Blackwater Valley it has views over rolling, wooded hills to the Knockmealdown Mountains beyond. The gardens are beautifully well kept and you are free to roam through.

Blarney Castle

Has to get a mention because it is Ireland’s best free-roaming castle and it is host to the famous Blarney stone. Old myths claim; if you kiss the Blarney stone you will be blessed with eloquence.

Hotels


There are too many top quality hotels to make a fair list. Here are 7 of them, I have named a few more that are equally as good.


Here are 7 of the Best hotels

Harveys Point Hotel

Secluded, nestled beside Lake Eski with a mountain background it has a excellent honeymoon setting. It is luxurious and romantic… no wonder it is top of the list on TripAdvisor. Located in Donegal.

The Cliff House Hotel & Spa

Situated on a cliff beside the ocean. Not a huge hotel but beautifully designed with a luxurious interior. You can tee off and drive golf balls into the sea. Premium spa treatments available. Located in Cork.

Inchydoney Island Lodge & Spa

Perfect for unwinding and relaxing, excellent spa and it is beachside. Lots of activities available including surfing, deep sea fishing and whale watching. Between adventures, spa treatments with cosy accommodation you won’t need to leave the area. Located in Cork.

Aghadoe Heights Hotel & Spa

Features an astonishing mountain view over the lake with a panoramic view will leave you gasping for breath. Its sleek finished interior with contemporary comfort and spa available also contributes to its 5 stars. The Paps Mountains, visible from the hotel, were called ‘Dhá Chíoch Danu’ in Gaelic, which means ‘the two breasts of Danu’. This was the name of the Celtic female goddess. Located in Killarney.

Lough Eske Castle, a Solis Hotel & Spa

A timelessly beautiful castle and spa and the luxurious interior and variety of rooms earns it 5 stars. It is a meticulously restored 17th century castle that offers a fresh perspective of castle accommodation. Located in Donegal.

The Twelve Hotel

Located in a beautiful seaside irish speaking village in Galway. It is a petit boutique hotel. Your very own private spa is available. This hotel is ideal for relaxing and enjoying your first days of marriage. The wooden floors throughout the hotel offers a warm feel. Although it is a 4 star hotel, it is still very luxurious and it has beautiful sights around it.

Parknasilla Resort & Spa

Another fine hotel surrounded by views of the Atlantic Ocean and green forestry with a hot-tub on an outdoor deck so you can enjoy the view together in style. Just off the Wild Atlantic Way there is plenty of beauty to see and beautiful Victorian styled rooms to stay in.

Some of the Finest Spa


Famous Irish hospitality ties the signature treatments and luxurious pampering all together into an unforgettable spa experience. All of the spas will awaken the senses and relax the mind. We’ll be able to book your treatments depending on your location and itinerary.


Here are 7 of the best GoIrish spas…

Ritz-Carlton Powerscourt Co.Wicklow

Positioned snugly below the Sugarloaf Mountains in Wicklow, the garden county, Powerscourt has a great setting. The Spa is elegant and sleek with a black marble swimming pool with silver speckles mimicking the night sky. Located beside a private river walk for guests, waterfalls and gardens. It is perfect for getting lost in the moment. I doubt you will get hungry because food is supplied by Gordon Ramsey's restaurant.

The Cliff House Hotel & Spa

Again, it gets mentioned… I’m starting to get concerned for other hotels. Set on the side of a cliff with a view of Ardmore Bay, the spa is well lit up in natural light. there are 2 beautiful walkways nearby. With a flawless finish,slatted walls, an infinity pool and an outdoor jacuzzi overlooking the bay; it is tranquil yet energetic.

Monart Destination Spa, Co. Wexford

Set in 100 acres of countryside, with horses and woodland surrounding the hotel combined with a mixture of soft, light wood and light colored marble evokes a different feel to this spa. The garden consisting of waterfalls, streams, mature trees and rolling hills all intermingle to create an inspiring and beautiful space.

Delphi Mountain Resort, Co. Galway

This lodge style resort is surrounded by the Connemara Mountains which can be seen in great fashion from the spa. the rugged landscape is a perfect match for the wood and stone exterior of the resort. It offers a different kind of luxury as the wooden furniture keeps with the lodge’s earthy feel and the wooden tones used on the interior keeps the warm feeling inside. The spa’s relaxation area and its hydro pool have one of the best views in Ireland.

Muckross House Spa, Co. Kerry

Winner of the 2011 ‘World Luxury Spa Award’ and it is clear to see why… the pool area looks like a place a Greek Goddess would bath. It is composed of marble floor & pillars and light blue tiling in the pool. There is a secluded jacuzzi surrounded by lovely green forestry. A combination of Greek style architecture and Celtic doors offers top class luxury.

ESPA, G Hotel, Co. Galway

This one moves away from the secluded setting. Located minutes away from Eyre Square in Galway the ESAP has a world leading design with urbanised style and a contemporary sense of luxury. A dark pool area with blue & purple lighting on the walls and a green-lit pool, it is definitely something different. Excluding the pool area it is a well lit spa. The spa exterior is surrounded by Japanese style gardens and a Zen garden on the roof. It reflects a timelessness of contemporary elegance.

Great Counties To Begin, Stay Or Finish In


The Republic of Ireland is composed of 26 counties and Northern Ireland has 6. Of course each county has its reasons to be visited but some are more iconic than others. The Counties below all have a vibrant nightlife, great Irish culture, sights to see, things to do and places to stay. We have tours to show you the very best of each! 🙂


Here are the top GoIrish Counties…

Dublin

The capital should be visited, not just because it is the capital. Dublin's historical significance in the early steps towards a republic cannot be ignored. Although there are many more reasons; the nightlife is great and Temple Bar should be visited if you are in Dublin. The architecture is beautiful, there are plenty of tours like the Guinness Storehouse Trinity College and the Book Of Kells to name a few.

Kerry

Now the second best place for family-holidays in Europe. Full of sights and culture, Kerry is home to the Ring of Kerry and Ireland’s most cultural city- Kilkenny. No doubt you’ll love the people and you will be culturally adequate by the end.

Galway

The west of Ireland is beautiful, as is Galway! it has similarities to Dublin but it is more chilled out. It is home to the iconic Salthill and the streets are full of buskers. The city is a joy to explore with its twisty cobbled streets, colourful shop facades and busy café/ bar culture. The city is also well known for its many festivals throughout the year.

Donegal

The most northern county with one of the best tour routes out there- The Wild Atlantic Way, it is breathtaking! It is full of pretty towns and great resting places. Home to the beautiful Letterkenny city. It is a Gaeltacht county too.

Cork

Rich farmlands and river valleys contrast with the wild sandstone hills of the west, and above all there is the magnificent coastline scooped and fretted by the Atlantic into great bays and secret coves, strewn with rocky headlands and long soft golden sands.

ESPA, G Hotel, Co. Galway

This one moves away from the secluded setting. Located minutes away from Eyre Square in Galway the ESAP has a world leading design with urbanised style and a contemporary sense of luxury. A dark pool area with blue & purple lighting on the walls and a green-lit pool, it is definitely something different. Excluding the pool area it is a well lit spa. The spa exterior is surrounded by Japanese style gardens and a Zen garden on the roof. It reflects a timelessness of contemporary elegance.

About Ed


Hi.
My name is Ed short for Edgar. Mixed blood of Latvian and Ireland
I have lived in Mullingar town for most of my life. Traveling around the country is my favorite pass time activity, I have been to many places, and love to explore all the nooks & crannies of Ireland. The beauty of Ireland's landscape is unbelievable sometimes you feel like in a different country. From the serenity of the walk at Glendalough to the humbling feeling of being beside Cliffs of Moher is truly amazing to experience.
When I travel throughout Ireland the hospitality is the one thing that stood out most! Cork is my personal favourite as the people are so nice and welcoming my highlight was the Titanic experience where you feel like one of the passengers who are about to board the ship from the heartbreak pier that still stands to this day.
In Ireland you will always get the warmest welcome in any B&B. My other hobbies are cooking horse riding and fishing. I can’t wait to share the experiences with you for your Trip of a lifetime to this amazing Green Isle.
Sláinte (Cheers)

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About Donna


Hey, my name is Donna and I'm from the town of Mullingar in the Heart of Ireland.

One of my passions is exploring and from my experience, Ireland is a beautiful country to explore. I have so many recommendations but for newcomers to Ireland I definitely opt to send you to Westport for Croagh Patrick & Clew Bay, perfect for hiking scenery and beautiful seafood, 

My favorite place in Ireland is Galway City - I love going for a meal with my friends, followed by a stroll down the cobbled streets, before popping into one of the Traditional Irish Pubs like  An Púcan.

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About Rita


Hi, I’m Rita and I am living in Kilkenny, the Marble city.

Born in Portugal, I fell in love with Ireland from the moment I landed here. I intended to stay for 6 months, and 6 years after I just cannot imagine my life without the Irish ‘craic’. 

Working in Events & Tourism for the last years has been so rewarding - bringing people to see all the magical, undiscovered spots in this country is what I wake up for every day. I have made memories that will last a lifetime, and I work towards creating the same experiences for others visiting the Emerald island. 

My favourite place in Ireland is probably the Dingle Peninsula, where bumpy roads bring the Atlantic ocean and green mountains together. The seafood is just as brilliant as the landscape, which I couldn’t forget to mention, being the foodie that I am!

You could say I am biased when I pick Kilkenny as one of my other top spots - I just can’t get enough of this lively mediaeval city branded by its hospitality.

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About Tina


Hi my name is TinaMarie, I have been working in Travel for over 15 years now and still love it as much as when I just started. There is something very special about bringing people to Ireland because we live here we take pride in our wonderful little country and want the whole world to experience what we are lucky enough to have on our doorstep.

Without a shadow of a doubt my favourite county and city in Ireland is Galway simply due to the dual aspect living you can have in this area the beauty and serenity of the Connemara countryside and the diverse cultural living of Galway city. Come and see firsthand how friendly and welcoming the Irish people are , Stop waiting and make the trip of a lifetime!

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About Sinéad


Hey! My name is Sinéad. I'm from Longford, the heart of the midlands. I'm a countryside girl at heart, depsite living in the capital for a few years while studying. I love the hustle bustle of Dublin city centre, there's always so much going on and so much to do. Although, you can't beat the tranquility of the Irish countryside in my opinion!

Apart from my hometown, one of my favorite place in Ireland has got to be 'The Kingdom' (Kerry). The scenery is just unparalleled. From the idyllic wild Atlantic coasts to our selection of well-known mountain ranges, and everything in between. The ring of Kerry is definitely a must see, the nightlife is pretty great too!!

On my weekends I love to cheer on my local Gaelic football teams. I'd definitely recommend catching a GAA match on your travels!

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About Jessica


Hi, my name is Jessica,

I'm from the town of Mullingar, known as the hidden heartlands of Ireland. Travel is my passion, every weekend I try to visit a few different counties here in Ireland and also explore new and exciting countries. Unfortunately there is just not enough time to visit everywhere I want too on our beautiful island of Ireland, Naturally the next best thing is to help make others dreams come true with the trip of a lifetime to our fair isle!

My two favorite places in Ireland is Galway and Kerry. They are full of great culture, food, scenery, and of course many traditional Irish pubs!! There is always a great lively buzz no matter what time of year you visit.

I look forward to working with many of you in the near future to offer my knowledge, guidance and support for your trip of a lifetime.

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About Ronan


Hey!

My name is Ronan and I'm from Mullingar (the heart of the Midlands). I have a passion for travelling and have been all over the world. However, my most favourite place in the world is the west of Ireland along the Wild Atlantic Way. From seeing Basking sharks in Keem bay in Achill Island (Mayo), to having a lovely relaxing pint of Guinness in Salthill in Galway, to taking in the majestic Cliffs of Moher in Clare and kayaking alongside dolphins in Dingle bay (Kerry) - it's all just amazing. Oh, and not to forget the delicious Skellig chocolates while looking out at Skellig Michaeal in Kerry, yum!

I love all things sport and food - when I'm not travelling around Ireland I'm cooking up a storm in the kitchen and watching some local GAA (our national sport). I can't wait to help you out and make your trip to Ireland, the trip of a lifetime!

Céad mile fáilte mo chara - (A thousand welcomes my friend).

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