The Greenest Pastures in Ireland

Ireland, the land of rolling greens, historic castles, freckles, and dark beer is a dreamy holiday destination. The country has diverse options for cities. You have Dublin, Galway, Cork, Derry-Londonderry, and Belfast, for starters. Each city gives a sense of history, but has a backyard for those who want open spaces and the shore. Towns like Kilkenny and Antrim give a bit more of a country feel. The coastline is decorated with gorgeous castles and scenic views that have become popular driving routes. For the best viewing experience for castles specifically, we recommend the Causeway Coastal Route. Game of Thrones fans can also enjoy a similar drive along the north coast, simply named Game of Thrones Territory. Drive through the filming locations used in the show!

Along with the culture, aesthetic beauty, and fantastic food, Ireland has an abundant equine community. Horse Sport Ireland, the hub for all things equestrian in the country, has a niche for every discipline, which is good to know if you ever plan to make your stay in Ireland permanent. There are trail options for every landscape; castles, beaches, green pastures, you name it. Connemara Equestrian Escapes has all equestrian getaway needs covered. Their three-day excursions are a fantastic trip for those on a time crunch to enjoy the rugged landscape. Booking ride times and hotel is simple with their bundle packages.

Ireland visitors can also enjoy unique options for riding at local stables, such as Hollywood Horse and Pony Trekking, which has guided tours for half-day trips and 1.5-hour trips in Wicklow. If spectating is more your speed, there are a few racecourses around, such as Downpatrick Racecourse, which has been in operation for over 300 years.

Believe it or not, Ireland is chock-full of foodies. Farmer’s markets and food festivals are popular in each corner of Ireland, such as the Temple Bar Food Market and the Poacher’s Pocket. These markets allow you to make your own classic meal with the raw ingredients of the land. If a prepared meal is preferred, there are, of course, several options. For a quiet, charming meal, 1825 Adare Restaurant is a great option. Fresh food with decent pricing, what more can you ask for? Their warm chicken liver salad is a signature dish that is worth a shot! The ever-changing menu at Loam in Galway will keep foodies guessing what will come next. They work closely with local farmers, and supply the menu accordingly. Oh, did we mention there is also a wine bar there? Finding a place to eat is certainly not difficult here.

With all the history of Ireland, touristy stops are likely to be made. One that is a bit different is the EPIC Museum. This interactive experience gives patrons the opportunity to learn about the Irish people and the land itself, a good one for kids. There is also the Titanic Story Museum in Belfast. See where the great ship was built, ride the elevators used to build it, and see the history behind the ocean liner at the largest Titanic museum in the world. Architecture is an art form here, so play close attention to the detail and work that Ireland puts into its structures.

Photos: Chris hill

WHAT TO DO

Game of Thrones Territory
If you’re into scenic drives and Game of Thrones, this route will leave no stone unturned.
ireland.com/en-us/articles/ tripideas/game-of-thrones

Epic the Irish Emigration Museum
Discover the history of Ireland emigrants in this interactive museum.
epicchq.com

Titanic Experience
See where James Cameron’s hit movie, Titanic, all began.
titanicbelfast.com/Explore/ TitanicExperience.aspx

WHERE TO STAY

Connemara Equestrian Escapes
Enjoy Ireland through the ears of our beloved fourlegged creature. Be sure to check their holiday bundles for themed and seasonal rides.
connemaraequestrianescapes.com

The Castle
Stay in a beautiful castle that has been around since the 1600’s, with updates and restorations to make it feel like a fivestar hotel.
castle-townshend.com

Staunton on the Green
If you’d like to stay right in the city of Dublin, this historical house has modern comforts with local access.
stauntonsonthegreen.ie

WHERE TO EAT

1826 Adare Restaurant
This privately run restaurant has the taste of an Ireland home, and it is well worth a stop.
1826adare.ie

Loam
Enjoy fine wine and a local grown meal, a great place for the adventurous foodie.
loamgalway.com

The Poacher’s Pocket
A modern restaurant that supplies fresh ingredients in their pantry, doubles as a market, as well.
ballooinns.com/the-poachers-pocket

Categories: Travel

Comments

comments