Ireland shares its emerald island with Northern Ireland, which is a part of the UK. Both are well worth exploring! We went to Ireland in 2018 to take a British Isles cruise out of Dublin. In 2023 we spent a few days in Dublin, then returned a month later for a concert. In 2024, we are doing an Ireland Intensive Voyage on Azamara in July, and we will visit Galways as well as the famous Cliffs of Moher.
The capital of Ireland is best known for Guinness, an Irish dry stout first brewed in 1759. It is one of the most successful alcohol brands worldwide, and you can easily kill a few hours touring the brewery in Dublin and shopping for some merch in their store.
Dublin is more than just beer and pubs though. One of its greatest treasures is the Book of Kells, on display at Trinity College. A 9th century illuminated religious manuscript created by Celtic monks, the Book of Kells includes the four gospels of the New Testament and is one of the most popular attractions in the city. Dublin Castle, which dates from the 13th century and has served many functions over the years, is worth a visit as well.
Cork / Cobh
Cork is Ireland’s second largest city and is adjacent to the scenic and colorful harbor of Cobh.
Visiting the Blarney Castle and gardens – and kissing the Blarney Stone – is a popular excursion from Cork.
Ireland’s oldest city, Waterford was founded by Vikings in 914 A.D. and parts of its ancient walled center remain. The city is well-known for its festivals, as well as for Waterford Crystal. Explore 1,000 years of history in the Waterford Viking Triangle, Waterford’s historic old town area, and don’t miss the award-winning Medieval Museum.