IRELAND IN JULY – THE BEST THINGS TO SEE AND DO
It’s the warmest month of the year, although it never gets unmanageably hot in Ireland. With a temperate climate and long hours of sunshine, you’ll be able to explore the great outdoors in comfort. Whether you’re staying in one of the country’s top cities or enjoying the peace and quiet of the countryside, there’s so much to see and do from north to south. Here are some of the top things to add to your itinerary for your summer Ireland vacation.
HIKING – MACGILLYCUDDY’S REEKS
This is the best time of year to experience the views from the top of the Carrauntoohil Mountain, the central peak at MacGillycuddy’s Reeks in County Kerry. Almost guaranteed good weather means that rain shouldn’t stand in your way of a great panoramic photo opportunity (be sure to bring your camera).
This is Ireland’s highest mountain though, standing at over 3,400 feet. So don’t forget to pack sturdy hiking boots and walking poles if you plan to make it to the summit with ease.
FESTIVALS – GALWAY ARTS FESTIVAL
To see the ‘real Ireland’, the city of Galway is a must. For many, it outranks the Irish capitals of Dublin and Belfast. It’s set to be the 2020 European Capital of Culture, and its annual Arts Festivals is one of the reasons why Galway is such a cultural gem.
The festival is one of the largest multi-disciplinary gatherings across the continent, with an array of performances, art installations and exhibitions, family-friendly experiences, and much more.
BEACHES – DINGLE PENINSULA
Head to the most westerly tip of the Dingle Peninsula to find “one of the most beautiful places on earth” according to the Lonely Planet. Coumeenole Beach, located in the village of Dunquin, offers a great place to sunbathe or to enjoy a stroll. This area is popular with keen photographers, and the sunsets are to die for. Unfortunately, this area isn’t suitable for swimming due to strong currents. So bring your book or enjoy the views instead.
Other beaches to check out along Dingle Peninsula are Clogher Strand, Inch Beach and Stradbally Beach.
ISLANDS – THE SKELLIGS
What a perfect time to plan an island-hopping adventure. A tour of the Skelligs is ideal for nature lovers or bird watchers. Some of the bird species seen on Skellig Michael include Puffin, Arctic Tern, Black Guillemot, Gannet, Razorbill, Fulmar, and Manx Shearwater. The surrounding small Skelligs are also wonderful for wildlife walks and historical sites.
From seeking out the Star Wars filming locations to discovering the well-preserved sixth century monastic settlements on the islands, a boat tour to The Skelligs will make your vacation unforgettable.
SIGHTSEEING – BELFAST
Save a day or two for Belfast in Northern Ireland, and visit one of the most spectacular tourist attractions in Europe, The Titanic Museum. Inside the museum, there are plenty of interesting exhibits that take an in-depth look and journey back through time, including simulations, a ride, interactive media, dining experiences, and much more.
Close by, you will also find Belfast City Hall which offers free exhibitions open to the public all week.