The choice of attractions for private tours of Ireland is vast... Ancient monuments that are older than the Egyptian pyramids, breathtaking Atlantic coastal scenery, a real old pint-serving Irish pub in the heart of Dublin city, the Blarney Stone... are just a sample of the things to do in Ireland. No matter your preference, we are ready to craft a custom tour from your chosen destinations — at a pace that suits you.
Choosing what to see and do in Ireland can be challenging. With so many world-class attractions to choose from it can be difficult to know where to start. But worry not, we are here to guide you. Our team of highly experienced tour designers is ready to craft your perfect tour. We have compiled a list of the top 30 most popular attractions below to get you started.
Learn all about the famous drink whose heritage is a story of Ireland itself.More info
The famous Skellig islands, located off the Coast of Kerry feature an ancient monastery.More info
This 15th century tower house is famous the world over for its medieval feasts.More info
Dating as far back as 1204, Dublin Castle is an integral part of Irish HistoryMore info
Located in North County Dublin is the beautiful Malahide Castle & Gardens.More info
A noteworthy old-world country estate with accompanying gardens and waterfall.More info
A place of Christian pilgrimage & one of Europe's highest sea-facing cliffs.More info
Acting as a memorial of the ill-fated ship and a symbol of Belfast's past.More info
Stunning Kerry mountain scenery will greet you on a walk in the Gap of Dunloe.More info
Below, you will find a comprehensive Ireland tourist attractions map. This map details all the top attractions and destinations on the island of Ireland. The map includes; Natural Beauty (Green), Natural Parks (Dark Brown), Castles and Monuments (Navy), Villages and Towns (Pink), Religious Sites (Cyan), Cultural Sites (Orange), Castle Hotels (Blue) and Distilleries and Breweries (Brown).
When booking a private tour, one of the most important things to consider is the distance between your destinations. With this in mind, we have created a map to show the driving times in Ireland.
Driving times in Ireland are relatively short, for instance, it takes only 3 hours to cross the country, and about eight hours to drive from top to bottom. This means a road-based tour is an ideal way of seeing all that Ireland has to offer.
If you are unsure of how to proceed; don't worry, we are experts at creating tours that minimise driving time and maximise time at the attractions. We can advise you on the best route for your specific tour.
Adare is a small town in Co. Limerick, known for its quaint and colourful thatched cottages. Adare is considered to be one of Ireland's most beautiful towns so stop and take in the view. Don't forget your camera today - the perfect chance to capture the essence of old Ireland.
Explore Adare Village along the Wild Atlantic Way
The Aran Islands are made up of 3 islands dotted in front of Galway Bay. The largest of the 3 is Inishmore, home to Dun Aonghasa, a prehistoric fort. There are many ancient relics and monuments spread across the 3 islands.
Take a journey through this once troubled city. See the murals of the Loyalist Shankill Road & Nationalist Falls Road. The Troubles took their toll on the economic life of Belfast, but the past ten years of peace have returned much prosperity while the genuine friendliness of the city never left.
Situated five miles north-west of Cork city, Blarney Castle is a solid fixture on almost any tour of Ireland. It is best known for the famous "Blarney Stone" of which visitors are encouraged to kiss, in accordance with a tradition that spans centuries.
Originally built in 1823, Blarney Woollen Mills was mainly used for the spinning and weaving of wool. After it closed in 1973, it reopened in 1975 — as an Irish heritage shop.
This illuminated manuscript Gospel book is more than 1000 years old. An ancient text, it is now housed in Trinity College — right in the heart of Dublin. Famous the world over for its rich illustrations, it is generally considered to be Ireland's most treasured relic.
This 15th century tower house is famous the world over for its medieval feasts and pristine folk park. It is located in County Clare, close to Limerick City and Shannon Airport. The medieval banquets, run by the Bunratty Castle Entertainers, are a spectacle to behold.
A limestone plateau covering 250 square kilometres, The Burren takes its name quite aptly from the Gaelic for "rocky land" or "great rock". While in one sense very fitting, the name does not do justice to what experts have more justly termed "
one of the world's most stunningly unique natural heritage regions".
The Burren runs alongside the Wild Atlantic Way.
At the southern-most tip of Summer Cove, on Kinsale Harbour in Co. Cork, awaits the unyielding presence of Charles Fort, a star-shaped stronghold protecting the harbour from sea invaders since its completion in 1682. In recent decades, Irish heritage organizations have restored the fort to the impressive standards it now displays.
Kinsale marks the beginning of the Wild Atlantic Way, if you are starting in the south, and the end if you are starting in the north.
One of the most popular and most eagerly anticipated attractions on any Ireland Tour, and the views will not disappoint. They rise to a height of 702ft (214m) and 9 miles (14km) long, these sheer vertical cliffs hold a steady, undulating line against the tireless advance of the Atlantic below. A better view of the sea and setting sun you will not find.
The Cliffs of Moher are a Signature Discovery Point on the Wild Atlantic Way. For more information click here.
Perched on the banks of the River Shannon, Clonmacnoise is perhaps the foremost of Ireland's monastic cities. For those interested in early Christianity, it is a must-see destination. Enclosed within the ancient city walls are various ecclesiastical ruins including a cathedral, seven ancient churches, three high crosses, round towers and the largest collection of Early Christian grave slabs in Western Europe — all remarkably well preserved and fascinating to anyone, not just those with a special interest in Ireland's religious history.
The Culloden Battlefield Visitor Centre commemorates the last pitched battle fought on British soil, in April 1746. Learn more about the Jacobite intent to overthrow the House of Hanover and return the House of Stuart to the British throne.
Dingle is a small fishing town found on the rugged and scenic coastline of west County Kerry. It is a popular destination with holiday goes, especially in the warmer summer months and has a famous bottlenosed dolphin named Fungie living in its bay since 1983.
Explore Dingle further on the Wild Atlantic Way.
Dating as far back as 1204 Dublin Castle is an integral part of Irish History. Its role has changed significantly from those days to now where it is primarily a conference centre, tourist attraction and major Irish government complex.
Stunning Kerry mountain scenery will greet you on a walk in the Gap of Dunloe. A famous mountain pass between the MacGillycuddy's Reeks to the west and the Purple Mountains to the east. Mountains, old stone bridges, lakes and fresh air is what await you here.
Northern Ireland's only UNESCO World Heritage site, known in Gaelic as Clochán na bhFomhórach or Clochán an Aifir, The Giant's Causeway is an area of 40,000 basalt columns, formed into a regular interlocking pattern by an ancient volcanic lava flow.
An ancient monastic settlement, Glendalough (meaning: Valley of the Two Lakes) presents today's visitors with a chance to walk not only through the idyllic hills of Ireland's East, but also through the rough-hewn landscapes of ancient Irish history. The steep wooded slopes of Glendalough harbour one of Ireland’s most atmospheric monastic settlements. Sacked time and again by the Vikings, it nevertheless flourished for over 600 years. Founded in the Fifth Century by St. Kevin, the settlement would grow to be very powerful, at its zenith, some four hundred years later. By the start of the Fifteenth Century, this stronghold was in decline but the stone monuments and buildings remain as evocative and powerful today as they surely must have been then.
Located within Glenveagh National Park, Glenveagh Castle was built by Captain John George Adair between 1870 and 1873. Having made his fortune through land speculation in America, Adair return to Ireland and began large amounts of land in County Donegal. The castle was built in the Scottish Baronial style and is surrounded by a garden and commands stunning views of the nearby mountains, lakes, woodlands and valleys.
Guinness is more than just a brand, indeed, more than just a beer. And that's not just for the Irish, but for the many millions of Guinness-drinkers worldwide. The site of the brewery itself is massive, at a staggering 26 hectares, but it will be the old grain storehouse that you visit. Shaped like a giant pint of the black stuff, this most popular of Dublin attractions towers over the surrounding neighbourhoods, with the top-floor Gravity Bar offering a delightful panorama across the Dublin cityscape which can only be enhanced by a well-earned pint to cap-off your visit.
About Highland Folk Museum is a museum and open-air attraction located in the Scottish Highlands. It is designed to showcase the domestic and working lives of the early highland people.
Situated close to the River Boyne, the Hill of Tara is an archaeological site located between the towns of Navan and Dunshaughlin in County Meath. According to legend, it was the seat of the High King of Ireland. The Hill of Tara was in use as far back as the Neolithic era, from then until the 12th century, it was used as a sacred and political centre.
The Old Midleton Distillery is home to Ireland's other globally-recognizable tipple, Jameson's Whiskey. While Jameson's is enjoyed by millions worldwide, you don't need to be a whiskey-drinker to enjoy this fascinating visitor experience. There is much to discover here for everyone.
The location of the castle has been historically significant since Strongbow constructed the first building a wooden tower, in 1195, to control a fording-point of the River Nore and the junction of several routeways. William the Earl Marshall built the first stone castle on the site, in 1260.
Muckross Estate, in the town of Killarney, County Kerry was donated to the Irish Free State in 1932. Its grounds became Ireland's first national park and, over time, it has expanded to encompass nearly 25,500 acres. The jewel in the crown of the park is its majestic lakes, Lough Leane (the lower lake), Muckross Lake (the middle lake), and the Upper Lake. These lakes make up a quarter of the park's area and continue to draw admirers in huge numbers ever since the park first opened.
Killarney National Parks & Lakes are located a short distance from the town of Kenmare on the Wild Atlantic Way.
At Nancy's Point just outside Leenane Village you will board the "Connemara Lady" for a spectacular 90-minute cruise on Ireland's only fjord. Cruising the sheltered Killary Harbour Fjord is the ideal way to take in the dramatic sweep of the landscape, as you pass between the Twelve Bens and the Maam Turk mountains to the South, in County Galway, and the Mweelrea mountains to the North, in County Mayo. Not to mention the views out to the Atlantic at the mouth of the fjord.
Killary Harbour is also one of the Signature Discovery Points found along the Wild Atlantic Way.
Dear to the hearts of the Irish people. Kilmainham Gaol is truly a must-see location steeped in Irish history. This is where members of the 1916 rising were imprisoned and executed by the British. It was built in 1796. It was also a filming location for the original Italian Job movie and many others.
Located alongside the River Shannon in County Limerick, on King's Island. Dating back to 922, to a time when Vikings were the inhabitants of the island (Thormodr Helgason, the Viking sea-king, built the first settlement here. The castle itself was built in 1200, under the instruction of King John of England.
Kylemore Abbey is not only one of Ireland's most attractive buildings; since 1920, it has also been home to the Sisters of the Benedictine Order in Ireland. Even today, Kylemore continues to operate as a working Abbey: here, the sisters live, work and pray, as well as welcome visitors from across the globe. Kylemore Abbey's greatest attraction is its location. Nestled at the base of Duchruach Mountain on the northern shore of Lough Pollacappul, in the heart of the Connemara Mountains, it is regarded as one of Ireland's most romantic locations.
Kylemore Abbey can be viewed along the Wild Atlantic Way.
Located in North County Dublin is the beautiful Malahide Castle. Some parts of the castle date back to the 11th century. These days it is open for tours fo the public. In the summer, the stunning gardens are used as a concert venue for world-class music acts.
Located close to the Killarney National Park, Moriarty's is an Authentic Irish Gift Store and Restaurant. Hand crafted Irish jewellery, Waterford Crystal and classic and modern tweed fashions and furnishings are all on offer at the gift store. The restaurant is an 85 seater offering stunning views of the surrounding landscape.
Mount Congreve Gardens. Located in Kilmeaden, County Waterford, Mount Congreve Gardens is an 18th century Georgian estate and mansion. It was designed by the same architect that created both of Waterford's cathedrals, John Roberts.
Recently recognised as being one of the top 10 gardens in the world, Mount Stewart is a rich tapestry of planting plant life and stunning walking trails. The house dates back to the 19th century, and was the Irish seat of the Vane-Tempest-Stewart family.
Located on the grounds of the expansive and idylic Killarney National Park. Muckross House, and its 11,000-acre grounds, was donated to the Irish state in 1932.
Located on the grounds of the picturesque Muckross House and its impeccable gardens. Take a step back in time and see the Irish farming lifestyle of the 1930s and '40s. A time when the horse was responsible for much of the labour and the weather was the be all and end all in terms of production.
Located just outside the town of Newry in the royal County of Meath, Newgrange is a 5,200-year-old passage tomb. An archaeological wonder, its chamber and passage perfectly align with the Winter Solstice.
A noteworthy old world country estate with accompanying gardens and waterfall. Powerscourt Estate is a must-see for those looking for the old-world charm of the victorian era coupled with a modern twist. The extensive gardens and perfect for long walks. The gardens at Powerscourt are amongst the finest in Ireland, noted both for their design and for their dramatic setting at the foot of the Great Sugar Loaf. Several Hollywood movies have been shot here too, see if you can figure out which ones!
The Ring of Kerry is located on the Iveragh Peninsula of southwest County Kerry. It is a circular driving route that takes in a number of seaside villages and picturesque coastal landscapes.
The Ring of Kerry towns of Kilorglin, Glenbeigh, Cahersiveen, Waterville, Caherdaniel, Sneem and Kenmare also feature on the Wild Atlantic Way. You can also visit the Wild Atlantic Way Signature Discovery Point of Skellig Michael, an abandoned 7th century Christian island monastery, from the town of Portmagee during the warmer months of the year.
Ireland has more than its fair share of outstanding archaeological sites, but the Rock of Cashel is arguably the most impressive. The 'rock' from which it takes its name is, in fact, a limestone hill, covered in luscious green, rising from the plain which characterises the surrounding area. The word 'cashel', by contrast, is derived from the Irish Gaelic word caiseal, meaning stone fortress. It was the seat of kings and medieval bishops for 900 years and flourished until the early 17th century. Brian Ború was crowned King of Munster here in 977 and he became the High King of Ireland in 1002.
The famous Skellig islands located off the Coast of Kerry feature an ancient monastery. The larger Island, Skellig Michael was prominently featured in the recent Star Wars movies. The monastery, built more than 1000 years ago is only accessible to small groups, via boat. The islands are a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Slieve League Cliffs are found on the South-West coast of County Donegal. Known to be one of the highest sea-facing cliffs in Europe. Take in the stunning view, depending on the clarity of the day, of course, along Donegal Bay and the Sligo Mountains.
The Slieve League Cliffs are also included on the Wild Atlantic Way.
Once known as 'Ireland’s Hell', Spike Island started out as a monastic settlement in the middle of Cork Harbour. Over two centuries ago it became a military location with the building of 'Fort Mitchel' which occupies over 20 acres of the island. The island is accessed by ferry from Cobh.
The Quiet Man Museum. A reproduction of the quaint thatched cottage from the John Wayne starring, John Ford directed movie of the same name. all costumes, artifacts and furnishings have been recreated in precise detail, to reflect the setting of the 1952 classic. Located in the picturesque village of Cong, County Mayo.
An extensive multimedia tribute to the world's most famous ocean liner. The Titanic Experience is located at the top of the slipway from which the ship made its first and only descent into the Belfast Lough and the waters of the Irish Sea beyond. Opened in 2012 for the centenary of the ship's launch and tragic demise, the museum has rapidly become Ulster's most visited tourist destination, outstripping even The Giant's Causeway.
Located in County Meath, Trim Castle is the largest Anglo-Norman castle in Ireland. Hugh de Lacy and his son Walter built it over a 30 year period, finished in 1206.
Ireland's most prestigious university is arguably its most attractive, too. Covering no less than 16 hectares, the college buildings and grounds are a poetic tribute to the best of Victorian architecture. Receiving its charter from Queen Elizabeth I in 1592, Trinity remained exclusively protestant until 1793. Today, such prejudices and exclusions are long gone, and Trinity enjoys a global reputation as a leading institution for learning, teaching and research.