13 Awesome Things To See And Do In Ireland #sponsored #CharlotteJITI

13 Things To Do In Ireland #CharlotteJITI #sponsoredCheap Is The New Classy

Last week, I was invited to attend the Jump Into Ireland event at the Charlotte City Club, to learn about fun things to do in Ireland. While there, I got to experience some delicious, traditional Irish food, see some people perform Irish dances and hear some lovely Irish music. I also was introduced to the beautiful land that is Ireland, and many of the reasons why it is a top tourist destination.

There was really so much information provided that I am having a hard time deciding what all to include {and what to leave out} so that this doesn’t turn into a mini Ireland encyclopedia. So, if I missed any of the fun things to do in Ireland that you would like to read more about, please tell us about it in the comments, and I might write another article about it later. πŸ™‚

13 Things To Do In Ireland

Ballynahinch Castle {Connemara County Galway}
This 4 star luxury castle is set on a private 450 acre wooded estate. Views from the Ballynahinch Castle include the beautiful 12 Bens Mountain Range, a salmon fishery and tree upon beautiful tree. Speaking of trees, you can even plant your own on the property and watch it grow via the internet when you get home. Guided hikes, boat trips and fishing are also available, among other nature related fun.

Parknasilla Resort & Spa {Kenmare Bay}
A member of the Manor House Hotel Collection, Parknasilla Resort & Spa is a 500 acre resort is situated on the Wild Atlantic Way. Featuring an Ocean Side Spa, a 12 hole golf course, tennis courts, a beach, the Pygmalion Restaurant and walking trails, everything you need is right here.

Lough Eske Castle {Donegal Town}
Lough Eske Castle is an award winning, 5 star castle in Northwestern Ireland, located near the Bluestack Mountains. Superior hospitality and comfort is their specialty and they have a rich history dating back to the 1400s. Fully restored, experience old world charm and the luxuries of today.

13 Things To Do In Ireland #CharlotteJITI #sponsored

It’s All About The Literature {Dublin & Belfast}

In this UNESCO City of Literature you can almost hear the words of Oscar Wilde, James Joyce and Samuel Beckett echo through the streets of Dublin.

In Dublin, you can visit Davy Byrne’s, a literary pub highlighted in James Joyce’s Ulysses. You can also take part in the Dublin Literary Pub Crawl or visit the Dublin Writers Museum.

Belfast was the birthplace of C.S. Lewis. If you are a fan, then the C.S. Lewis Tour should definitely be one of your stops in Ireland, where you will learn about many of the things and sights that inspired his writings.

Titanic Belfast {Belfast}
I visited the Titanic Museum in Pigeon Forge and found it fascinating. Did you know that Titanic was built in Ireland? People who love history and learning about the ill-fated ship should definitely visit Titanic Belfast, which includes a replica shipyard ride and an ocean exploration center.

Waterford Crystal {Waterford}
If you love beautiful pieces for the home, then I think you should definitely visit the House of Waterford Crystal. With 200 years of crystal making history, you will get to see how each piece is painstakingly made, right before your eyes. You can also check out their retail store, where you can purchase a piece of Waterford Crystal from the largest selection in the world.

See Where Game Of Thrones Is Filmed {Northern Ireland}
If you love Game of Thrones, then you will most likely love Northern Ireland, too. See caves, castles, and the Dark Hedges used in the hit HBO show for the Kingsroad. Check Ireland.com for a 3 day self-guided itinerary.

Wild Atlantic Way
The Wild Atlantic Way is a 1,500 mile tour that goes from the top of Ireland to the bottom of Ireland by way of the east coast, along the Atlantic Ocean. It really seems like a beautiful way to discover much of the beauty that Ireland has to offer, including UNESCO World Heritage Site, Skelling Michael, an early Christian Monestary. You can even sleep in castles and lighthouses along the way.

Amazing Archaeology Awaits {Londonberry}
If you love ancient archaeological treasures, then you need to visit Mountsandel. Dating back 9,000 years, it’s the earliest known settlement in Ireland. Beautiful views of woods and the river and ancient remains await. Many more archaeologically significant sites await including Clonmacnoise, Dun Aengus, Skellig Michael and Legananny Dolmen.

Learn About Your Ancestry {Dublin}
My family is from Ireland, Scotland and Australia. If you have familial ties to Ireland, here are some helpful tips to get you started tracing down your Irish roots. Also, while in Ireland, you should visit the GRO Research Room on Werburgh Street, since not all of their records are online yet. You can, however, access some of their GRO Research Room’s records online for a small fee. You can also search records for free at FamilySearch.org and you can see pay-per-view records up to 1900 at Roots Ireland.

Fota House, Arboretum & Gardens {Cork Harbour}
Do you love Downton Abbey? I definitely do. Well, you will love this Regency Irish Country House preserved in the Downton Abbey style. At Fota House, you can experience how the Lords and Ladies of the house lived while also seeing how the Butlers and other house workers existed in the grand rooms and working kitchen and sculleries. Guided tours are available for both the house and the gardens. There is also easy access to the Wild Atlantic Way.

13 Things To Do In Ireland #CharlotteJITI #sponsored

Sheep Herding {Ring of Kerry}
If you travel with Isle Inn Tours, you are offered some really unique experiences. Want to know what it’s like to heard sheep? Well, try it out and see. You can also adopt a lamb. I love animals {I mean, look at those faces!} and I think it would be so fun to “own” a lamb. They also offer other cool experiences like driving a vintage car along the Wild Atlantic Way and dolphin discovery tours {another animal I love!}.

World’s First Democratic Revolution {Ennis}
Site of the world’s first democratic revolution {1828}, Ennis residents elected Daniel O’Connell {aka “The Liberator”} to the House of Commons. This ended the rule that Catholics could not be members of Parliament.

Looking For Some Irish Inspired Recipes At Home?

Check out this Guinness Beef Stew Recipe and this Slow Cooker Guinness Onion Soup Recipe.

So, what did I miss? Feel free to add any other great things to do in Ireland in the comments below.

Of This List Of Things To Do In Ireland, What Is Your Favorite?


About Dawn McAlexander

Dawn is a full time travel and lifestyle blogger. Besides Cheap Is The New Classy, she also owns and writes for EatPlayRock.com, an entertainment site. Her interests include traveling, home decor, DIY projects, organizing her home and enjoying a nice cup of coffee {or two}. She currently resides in North Carolina with her dog, Daisy.


  1. Robin (Masshole Mommy) says

    Oh you have no idea how much I would love to visit Ireland. It’s definitely on my bucket list!

  2. Ireland is on my bucket list, so I hope I get the chance to do all of these. I really want to see the castles.

    • Robin (Masshole Mommy) says

      That is exactly what I want to see. A real castle….besides the one in Disney πŸ˜‰

  3. If I ever get to Ireland, I’m going to see every castle. Every one. I’m also going to roam the countryside whenever possible. I love the geography!

  4. Jenna Wood says

    Oh what I would do to go to Ireland! It is on my bucket list for sure but I am barely making my first trip ‘out of the country’ stopping in Canada this year for an Alaskan cruise!

    • Dawn McAlexander says

      An Alaskan Cruise sounds fun, too. I went to Canada once, when I was a teen, many moons ago. I was on the other side of the country, though. I visited Ontario and Niagara Falls. Have fun on your upcoming cruise. πŸ™‚

  5. I’ll have to see how many of these my Sister in law did! She came back from a study abroad this past summer, and we still haven’t heard about all the sites she saw. I’d LOVE to go see where Game of Thrones is filming!

  6. Ireland is on my list of vacation spots. Looks like such a beautiful country!

  7. I want to do them all–they all sound so interesting! Of course I’d have to see Dublin and love archiological sites and would love to see that stretch of rugged coastline!

  8. I would love to visit Ireland!! The history and culture is amazing there!! This is a great list!

  9. Ireland is one of my dream trips! I cannot wait until we are able to take some time off and make it over there πŸ™‚

  10. Catherine S says

    Ireland is on my bucket list of places to visit. It sure looks like I will have a lot of things to see and do.

  11. We are part Irish, but have never visited. This is on my wishlist of destinations. Your suggestions all sound so amazing and this would be a once in a lifetime trip.

  12. I want to see a REAL castle! Ireland is on my bucket list and this post makes me so excited for it.

  13. I would love to visit Ireland someday. It is such a breathtaking place with so much history.

  14. That’s a place I would absolutely love to go! Now I have more than a few reasons to do it too!

  15. The closest I’ve been to Ireland was a restaurant at Disneyworld. They had river dancing, and we had traditional Irish foods. It was delicious and fun!

    • Dawn McAlexander says

      Do you remember the name of the restaurant in Disney World? We might have to try that when we go back.

  16. A friend of mine is now living in Ireland and based from her pictures, it’s beautiful out there. It would be nice to visit.

  17. Ireland is completely spell binding. I have poured through brochure after brochure and site after site. So very rich in history but yet making history every day. With Waterford Chrystal with Pub nights where so many share their lives. From Natural living and using the best of their resources. Most of their food at the hotels and castles are locally grown. Imagine if we did that here in the U.S. It’s true many think of Leprechauns and Mystic powers but I believe the magic comes from getting to know Ireland.

    • Dawn McAlexander says

      You are so right. Speaking of the pubs, when we went on our cruise a couple of months ago, they had a pub day on the ship. Though not Irish, it was still a lot of fun. I imagine hanging out in an Irish pub would be just as much fun, if not more. πŸ™‚

  18. Natalie Z says

    It’s almost like I am there with those beautiful picture! I dream of going to Ireland some day so thinks for the tips!

  19. Lisa Bristol says

    I have always wanted to visit Ireland. It is on the top of my bucket list. It is such a beautiful place.

  20. Oh I would love to visit Ireland. It is on our to-do list. My step-parents went and loved it πŸ™‚

  21. Ooh I’ve seen a couple of these places. My husband married a woman from Dublin, and for 10 years they lived in Ireland together. But now, they moved back to Canada.

  22. Oh man! Ireland has always been on my bucket list. I’m pinning this so when I finally go – I don’t forget these places. Thanks!

    • Dawn McAlexander says

      Thank you for pinning! I hope that you get to check out all of these places one day.

  23. It is my dream to visit Europe and spend a few days in each country. This post certainly moved Ireland up a bit on my list and I had no idea there was so much to experience!

  24. visiting the castle at least once in my lifetime sounds so cool. I love the idea of living inside for a day and wake up in the morning with a beautiful view and interact with nature.

    • Dawn McAlexander says

      Me too. Staying in a castle would probably be one of the coolest things ever!

  25. Ireland is on my bucket list of places to visit once in my life. Thanks for the list so I can know what to do when I finally make it there.

  26. Ireland would be so neat to visit. It’s so beautiful and pretty.

  27. It sounds so enchanting and interesting! I traveled quite extensively in Scotland and England but unfortunately I never made it to Ireland!

    • Dawn McAlexander says

      I bet Scotland and England were great, too. Perhaps you can go back and tour Ireland one day. πŸ™‚

  28. Oh my goodness. I’ve always wanted to go to Ireland. Such a beautiful place. I’ll go someday and hit some of these spots.

  29. What a fantastic opportunity to enjoy Ireland near home. It is on my bucket list, so I do hope to see it someday. I appreciate the great pictures and wonderful advice about things to see and do.

  30. Wow! I’ve never been to Ireland before, but your post sure makes me want to! It sounds like an amazing place to visit.

  31. I think I would want to see the castles most of all. Then I would like to see the town of Cork and hopefully visit Waterford crystal (or at least buy some)

  32. That would be a dream vacation for my husband and me. Ireland is one of the places we want to visit someday, especially where they filmed Game of Thrones. We are such huge fan and that would definitely be one of the places we’d like to visit.

    • Dawn McAlexander says

      My husband’s sister loves Game of Thrones. I will definitely have to tell her about this.

  33. Oh my gosh – Ireland would be amazing to visit! I want to do everyone of these things!

    • Dawn McAlexander says

      I wonder how long someone would have to be in Ireland to be able to do all of the things listed here – especially considering how long the Wild Atlantic Way is?

      • Loretta Lindsey says

        We just spent five glorious weeks doing all of these things and didn’t even begin to cover it all. We had our own car so we could plan our own itinerary. Some highlights I would suggest (in addition to your list) would be the Cobh Heritage Center, Cahir Castle, Kilkenny Castle and Hooks Head Lighthouse. Whatever one plans to do, be is shape and take comfortable shoes because walking is part of everything there. Definitely don’t miss the Ring of Kerry and Waterford Crystal–take their outstanding tour.

  34. Oh man, I dream about going to Ireland! What beautiful photos of a beautiful place!

  35. I have been to the Titanic one in Missouri. I definitely wanna see the one in Ireland! Heck, I just wanna go to Ireland in general πŸ˜›

    • Dawn McAlexander says

      I haven’t seen the Titanic exhibit in Missouri, either. I think I have heard others talk about it, though, and they liked it. πŸ™‚

  36. I would love to see Ireland one day. It seems like such a beautiful place to visit. It’s a dream vacation!

  37. I was lucky enough to visit Ireland as a teenager, and was moved by the rich history and beauty of the country. I would love an opportunity to go back. I’ve done some of the things on your list, but I need to check them all of my bucket list.

  38. I would love to visit Ireland! Thanks for sharing these great places to visit!

  39. Ireland would be my dream vacation and if I ever make it there, I’ll do all 13 things. I was watching an Ireland prime video today and was day dreaming of how awesome it would be to go.

    • Dawn McAlexander says

      Ooh, I have Amazon Prime and we watch vacation videos on there all the time. We are going on a 10 day cruise of the Southern Caribbean at the end of the year and have been watching a lot of videos of the islands we are going to, to familiarize ourselves with them. Perhaps we should watch one on Ireland tonight. πŸ™‚

  40. Ireland is definitely in my bucket list of places to see! Thanks for your wonderful post. It’s a good reference point for me πŸ™‚

  41. I’d love to kiss the Blarney Stone but hubby says nuh uh. He’s not kissing something bazillions of others have kissed, lolol

  42. Fi NΓ­ NeachtΓ‘in says

    Being from Ireland I loved this! It’s a shame I haven’t been to a lot of these places myself after living here all my life but I’ll be exploring more in the summer. Can I just correct you though, Waterford Crystal isn’t in Cork (where I am from by the way) it’s in County Waterford and I know cause I’ve been there πŸ™‚

    • Dawn McAlexander says

      That is cool that you are from Ireland. Are there any places that you would recommend that we left out? Also, thanks for catching my error. Fixed. πŸ™‚

  43. Ireland is one of the places I’ve wanted to go to for a long time. It would be amazing to see all the historical sites and take everything in.

  44. My Granddaughter Grandfather on her Dads side is Irish. He is planning on taking the Grandkids to Ireland one day. I am not exactly sure where they are going in Ireland, but will forward this to her.

  45. Ireland is one of the places I am due to visit. I love the culture and the accents! I would actually love to try my hand at sheep herding.

  46. sounds like a fun event! glad you had fun

  47. I have always wanted to go to Ireland! Hopefully some day!

  48. So beautiful! I actually have a friend who is on her honeymoon in Ireland right now!

  49. I would love to visit Ireland. It is so beautiful and I actually have people I could stay with if I did visit!

  50. My mother in law visited Ireland a few years back. I would love to visit myself.

  51. How gorgeous and there is so much to do! Definitely on my Bucket List to go!

  52. Oh wow I never really knew GOT was filmed there – gotta see that place asap, haha!

  53. My husband is Irish, and Ireland is at the top of my travel bucket list. It seems like such an amazing and beautiful country to visit!

    • Dawn McAlexander says

      That’s cool. Was he born in Ireland? If so, how old was he when he moved over here?

  54. The Waterford Crystal would be my favorite! I would love to visit Ireland. πŸ™‚

  55. Absolutely beautiful! My favorite is the sheep herding hehe. So cute! I think its so cool that you can adopt a lamb! I have always wanted to visit Ireland and I will one day! I will keep these ideas in mind!

  56. Ireland is on my bucket list. I find it has a great combination of history and modern things. I love your pictures. They are gorgeous

    • Dawn McAlexander says

      I wish I could take credit for them. I actually snagged them off Morguefile. Perhaps one day I will go and share my own. πŸ™‚

  57. Sounds like great choices.. I would love to go just to visit the castles!

  58. I hope that my husband and I can visit Ireland one day… it’s a dream of both of ours. I’m bookmarking this for future reference!

  59. I’ve been once in middle school, but never really appreciated the scenery. I’d love to take the family back one day. Great suggestions

    • Dawn McAlexander says

      I went on some pretty cool trips while I was younger and I didn’t appreciate them near as much as I appreciate trips now. I think that just comes with age.

  60. Ireland would be a DREAM vacation! I especially like the idea of sheep herding- its just quirky enough to be fun.

  61. The sheep herding experience sounds like a lot of fun. We have sheep, but it would be even cooler to get to see them while out of the country!

    • Dawn McAlexander says

      Sheep are so cute! That is definitely one of the things I would like to do most.

  62. Ireland is my dream. If I could only travel to one place in my entire life, this would be it. I want to visit my friends and family that live there. See what my grandmother and great grandmother saw. Sometimes. I hope it will happen.

  63. Ireland has been a dream vacation spot for me for years now. I wish I could go one day, it’s such a beautiful land with so much culture and things to learn.

  64. I would love to visit some day! Thank you for a list of things to do when I get there.

  65. Hi Dawn, My Mother-in-Law went on a Castle Tour in Ireland – and I’d so enjoy that and more – and I enjoyed your vid – making me feel Ireland

    • Dawn McAlexander says

      Wow. I bet that was a lot of fun! I couldn’t even imagine what it would feel like to stand inside a castle!

  66. This is definitely on my bucket list! Everything sounds amazing!

  67. Rebecca Swenor says

    These are some amazing things to do in Ireland and it is so beautiful there with so much history. I would so love to go there some day. The House of Waterford Crystal would be so awesome to visit along with seeing the castles. Thanks for sharing.

  68. I keep begging the hubs for a trip to Ireland. Maybe if I show him this list of things to see, he be more willing to go!

  69. Never been there. Would love to visit there someday. We hope to do more traveling once my hubby retires. Really looking forward to it.

  70. I want to go to Ireland so much. The country, I’ve heard, is so beautiful. I didn’t know that they made Waterford Crystals there. I love them.

  71. Ireland is so beautiful, these are really great things to do there!

  72. My husband and I went to Ireland before we had kids and it was amazing! I’d love to go back and do it all again!

  73. It is on my bucket list. I would love to visit Ireland one day: combination of history and modern things to visit

  74. I did a day tour to Ireland once I think when I was in Europe…I can’t believe I missed all these cool places.

  75. So so beautiful! I have always wanted to see Ireland, you have put together a great list of must sees!

  76. The pictures are really awesome. I have never been to Ireland before, but it is one of my favorite place to visit. If I get a chance to go, I would definitely visit the Titanic Belfast and Waterford Crystal. Thanks for sharing a lot of information about Ireland.

  77. Wow, Ireland looks like such an amazing place! Thanks for sharing!

  78. Visiting Ireland is def. on my list of things to do. I think my girls would love the sheep herding.

  79. I’ve done most of the is when I was a teen. I was a student ambassador to the British Isles. I recommend also the old prisons in Dublin, Bunratty Castle, and even taking a stroll in the Gap of Dunloe. Oh, and going to an Irish pub… a MUST, at least once.

    • Dawn McAlexander says

      That sounds like you had a great experience. Thank you so much for your great travel suggestions.

  80. I always wanted to visit Ireland someday! This sounds like such a great to-do list! Thanks for sharing.

  81. Those sheeps are cute! Ireland is one of the places in my bucket list. I know it’s beautiful there.

  82. I’d love to take a trip to Ireland! With all the beautiful country side and castles I can see why they would film Game of Thrones there.

  83. Debbie Denny says

    I want to do all of these. I really want to go.


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