Travel blog

Irish Insider: Tips for Traveling to Ireland




From grand castles and sprawling country fields, to busting cities and turn-of-the-century pubs Ireland is a feast for the senses. Imagine sheer cliffs plunging into churning seas and endless green vistas where there are more sheep than people. This is the picture-postcard landscape that first welcomed John and Rosella Valentine on a recent YMT Vacations journey. Just returned, Rosella had this to share about the country, her experiences and the travel tips she picked up along the way:




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Topics: Europe, Ireland, Travel Tips


How to Identify Genuine Waterford Crystal: Ireland’s Treasured Glassware




The name Waterford is synonymous with quality. Created by hand in the city of Waterford, Ireland more than 200 years ago, this well-crafted glassware appeared in the homes of the well-to-do families throughout Europe, and even gained the admiration of the British royal family. Waterford Crystal pieces are valuable because they contain very intricate design elements, and the process to create them is both complex and labor intensive. The larger the piece, the more detail it includes, and the more expensive it is purchase. The cost of these works-of-art varies, with prices ranging from €35 for an ornate seahorse memento, up to €11,350 for a 12-arm crystal chandelier.




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Topics: Ireland


WiFi, Mobile Phone and Electronic Tips for Ireland




From windswept stretches of rugged coastline to rowdy pubs flowing with Guinness, towering old castles to a romantic countryside where ponies run free, this is Ireland -- the land of your dreams and the trip of your lifetime. So, now that you’ve made your travel plans here are some useful things you’ll need to know for your arrival. From WiFi to cell phones, electrical devices to hair dryers, here are our tips for what to pack, what to know, and what you can expect when you power up on the Emerald Isle.




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Topics: Ireland, Travel Tips


13 Irish Phrases You Need to Learn Before Your Next Ireland Vacation




There’s nothing quite like the sound of an Irish brogue rolling off the tongue of a silver-headed Dubliner. Before you make your way to the Emerald Isle, here are 13 Irish phrases you’ll need to acquaint yourself with before your Ireland tour:




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Topics: Ireland


Fairies, Sprites and Leprechauns: Ireland’s Legends and Lore



The Origins of Irish Folklore

From ancient times, the Druids and the Celts believed in the power of magic. There are stories of sacred shamrocks that could ward off evil spirits, water sprites, fairies with the power to ruin a mortal's sleep, heartbroken banshees, and mischievous leprechauns. Even the lush natural landscape was shrouded in mythology. The gentle mist-covered lakes were once believed to be gateways to the Otherworld, while the Giant’s Causeway was a bridge built by Finn McCool to reach his love across the sea. This earnest belief in their magical creatures and famous Irish legends was so widespread and precious to the Irish people that it persevered through the centuries, and still remains part of Ireland’s literary legacy and its storied history.




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Topics: Europe, Ireland


Things to Do in Connemara: Ireland's Wild West



Lauded by poets and authors, Connemara is a remote corner of Ireland beloved for its romantic landscapes and majestic scenery. With rusty peat bogs and miles of desolate coastline, glittering black lakes and soaring mountains, it is Ireland as Ireland used to be. Visitors come to this region on the edge of Europe in County Galway to wander amidst the startling landscapes, take in the untamed wonders of scenic byways, and explore the quaint villages that pepper the region. Here are just some of the top things to do when traveling to Connemara.




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Topics: Europe, Ireland


7 Things to Know About Ireland's County Galway Pubs




One of the best things you can do in County Galway is to spend an evening in a pub. Well to be competely truthful, that's one of the best things you can do anywhere in Ireland. One YMT Vacations Best of Ireland Tour we overnight in Galway on Day 7, so there's no excuse for not getting out and experiencing the Galway pub scene!




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Topics: Europe, Ireland


The Best of Ireland: Enjoying a Good Ole’ Irish Breakfast



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Also called a “full breakfast,” the traditional Irish breakfast is more than filling -- it’s downright overwhelming. There’s an old saying that says “eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and dinner like a pauper” and that’s never been more true than with this generous plate of morning sustenance. Pull up a chair and belly up to the table of a cozy pub in Cork, or any other city in the Emerald Isle, and you’ll see what we mean.




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Topics: Europe, Ireland


Dublin to Belfast: Ireland Travel Tips




Separated by just 100 miles, Belfast and Dublin are, in fact, in two different countries. The former is the capital of Northern Ireland, a part of the United Kingdom, while the latter is the capital of the Republic of Ireland, also referred to simply as Ireland. As such, there are a few tips to keep in mind when traveling between these two destinations:




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Topics: Europe, Ireland


The Edge of Ireland




Early in the morning, before everyone arrives, there is a soul-stirring loneliness to the Cliffs of Moher. Seamist and fog shroud the limestone rocks and the cries of nesting seabirds are carried on the wind. For now it is gray and bleak. In this moment, time stands still.




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Topics: Europe, Ireland