prehistoric to Celtic to medieval, the past is alive in Ireland.
Myth and legend are pervasive. Whether itís an ancient monument,
a holy site, or the ruins of a monastery, itís there to see in the
countryside, the towns, and in the people. The present and future
are here too, most notably in the large cities of Dublin, capital
of Ireland, and Belfast, capital of Northern Ireland.
Ireland is green. Expect rain. Ireland is mainly rural. Expect
narrow roads and open spaces. Ireland is music, poetry, and conversation,
especially in its pubs, which are local meeting places. Expect hospitality.
Irelandís cultural heritage is strong. Expect tradition and enjoy
country of Ireland and Northern Ireland (part of the UK) are two
separate political entities. Geographically, they both inhabit the
same island. For travellers and tourists it is the latter that is
important, therefore we have placed them both under the heading
of Ireland to make journey planning easier.
We have divided our Ireland tour section by regions of the island,
then by counties. Under each county we have listed the major attractions
and interesting villages/towns.
The facts on the country of Ireland:
Area: 27,137 square miles
Currency: the Euro
Geography: Interior: plains, lakes, and river valleys,
peat bogs; Coastline: hills, mountains; Longest river: Shannon
Wildlife: deer, small mammals, 380 species of wild
Weather: rainfall varies from 31 to 56 inches per
year; temperature averages around 50 degrees; rainfall is heavy
in the west, lighter in the south-east.
Population: approximately 3.9 million
The facts on Northern Ireland:
Area: 5460 square miles
Currency: British pound
Geography: mountains, moors, lakes; Largest lake
in the British Isles, Lough Neagh, is here
Weather: mild, wet, windy in winter, warm summer
but not hot
Population: approximately 1,688,000, half of which
are in Belfast or nearby