One of the best things to do in Ireland is tour the Burren. The rolling hills of Burren make up a rocky, karst landscape located in County Clare. One of six national parks in Ireland, Burren is rich with archaeological, historical, and natural sites including nearly one-hundred megalithic tombs, a Celtic high cross, and a number of ancient ring forts composed of stone and wood. The Burren is also known for the impressive number of plants and animals that inhabit the park, and supports many species which are only found in the immediate area. Travelers with an Irish rental car should explore the many sites found throughout the Burren, including the Doolin Cave and Nursery, the Caherconnell Stone Fort, and hike along the Clare Coastal Walk Project, an impressive trail system along the Cliffs of Moher with excellent views of the coastline. Consider acquiring a GPS rental to assist you in navigating the many sites found throughout the Burren!
The River Shannon, named after Sionna, a Celtic goddess, has been a crucial waterway for transportation and trade since ancient times, having first been mapped by the Greco-Egyptian explorer Ptolemy. The river runs through eleven of Ireland's counties, meaning a long cruise of the river can take you on an epic tour of nearly half of Ireland's unique regions. Throughout history, the River Shannon has been closely bound with Ireland's military and political history, as many historic monuments, battle sites, and impressive fortresses can be found along the River Shannon. For a truly unforgettable Irish experience, consider parking your rental car at the marina and acquire a boat rental or jump on a river cruise and explore the banks of the river as you stroll through picturesque village after picturesque village!
Ireland's 'Wild Atlantic Way', at over 2,500 kilometers, is currently the world's largest, and youngest, official touring route. Envisioned by the Failte Ireland tourism authority to increase tourist traffic along Ireland's western Atlantic coast, the 'Wild Atlantic Way' is arguably the best way to explore the western coast, as it takes you along over 150 "discovery points", where travelers can experience stunning views, unique lodging arrangements, and excellent local cuisine. With your Auto Europe rental car in Ireland, it's easy to plan your road trip along the 'Wild Atlantic Way'; and while there are tons of destinations one could stop along, we highly recommend a stop in Cork to explore the historic trading port founded by the Vikings and the nearby Blarney Castle, a stop in Dingle to visit arguably the best-preserved traditional Irish down in the west, and an overnight stay in Galway followed by Westport to enjoy Ireland's contemporary luxuries perfectly blended with the traditional.
Ireland is arguably one of the best places on Earth for golfing enthusiasts to hit the green. With some of the world's best designed golf courses existing alongside absolutely breathtaking scenery, Ireland has quickly emerged as a prestigious golfing destination. Ireland can be divided into four regions (eastern, western, northern and southern) to better categorize the hundreds of golf courses found throughout the country; the eastern region, including the city of Dublin, for example, is home to several world famous golf courses. The Portmarnock club has been home to many Irish opens and popular golf events. In County Kildare, golf fans can find the K Club at Staffan, Arnold Palmer's second creation. A few miles outside Kilkenny City is the Mount Juliet Golf Estate, which was designed by Jack Nichlaus and hosted the 1993, '94, and '95 Irish Open and is a truly challenging course. Regardless of where you are in Ireland, a rental car or private chauffeur in Ireland will get you where you need to be to play on some of the world's finest Links!
Another interesting thing to do in Ireland is hiking the Ring of Kerry. The Ring of Kerry is an approximately 110 mile circular route located in County Kerry, located about a 2-hour drive from Shannon. The route provides travelers with dozens of picturesque views of the Atlantic coastline, as well as opportunities to explore various historic monuments, including several castles, fortresses, and former palatial estates such as the Ross Castle, the Staigue stone fort, and the Derrynane House. For travelers looking for some serious adventure and possibly an extended walking tour, they should consider taking the walking tour along the Kerry Way, an epic pedestrian path that over the course of 11 days brings hikers across this impressive landscape and through historic ruins, tiny seaside villages, and green meadows. Summer would certainly be one of the best times to visit Ireland if you're planning outdoor activities such as hiking the Ring of Kerry, but the trails are open year-round.
The Ireland Whiskey Trail is a free guide for traveleres to Ireland's best distilleries and whiskey producers. Self-described as a "call and challenge to smell, see, taste, talk and capture the magic and enchantment of whiskey - the Irish way," the guide recommends nearly fifty distilleries noted for their dedication to quality, traditional production methods, and hospitality. Two distilleries located on the trail we would highly recommend are the Old Kilbeggan Distillery, founded in 1757 and producing the same recipe from nearly 300 years ago, as well as the world-famous Jameson distillery, in Dublin, where you will be quickly educated regarding the history of whiskey production in Ireland. While on your whiskey tour of Ireland, make sure you're making appropriate arrangements to get home safe after drinking!
Looking for more suggestions on things to do in Dublin? Check out the rest of our comprehensive Ireland travel guide!
Learn More & Get Inspired: Complete Ireland Travel Guide