The North West of Ireland has, possibly, the strongest connection with the 'old world' vision of Ireland. 25% of all the Irish-speaking world live in County Donegal. It's the region, along with the West, that was most affected by mass emigration during the 19th and 20th centuries. Many towns and villages were left deserted by their youth and, consequently, left without any inhabitants. Abandoned stone settlements can still be seen dotted along the countryside. From these grim surroundings, the people that remained harvested a culture aimed at keeping the traditions of Irish music and art alive and well.
While not the birthplace of the W.B. Yeats, globally recognised as one of the 20th-century's most important literary figures, County Sligo held a special place in his heart. Having spent his childhood holidays here he fell in love with the area. He is buried in the town of Drumcliffe, County Sligo, and his grave has since become a pilgrimage for his fans.
The majority of art galleries of the Northwest are home to works by local artists. During the summer months it is also common to find exhibitions and installations on tour, both of local, Irish and international artists.
There are not many noteworthy music venues in the Northwest. If you are traveling in the area and would like to experience some live music, your safest option is to head for Letterkenny, County Donegal. Here you'll find An Grianán Theatre and Club Voodoo. An Grianán Theatre is a purpose-built theatre hosting stage plays, comedy acts, live bands and orchestras. Club Voodoo is a bar and nightclub that occasionally hosts live music.
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
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.