Moving to Ireland: What you need to know
Ireland is an island in the North Atlantic to the west of Great Britain, from which it is separated by the North Channel, the Irish Sea and St Georges Channel, and after which it is the largest island of the British Isles archipelago. It is the third-largest island in Europe and the twentieth-largest island on Earth.
Ireland is separated into 7 different tourist regions including;
The North West; Cavan, Donegal, Leitrim, Monoghan and Sligo. This is the most romantic region with quiet lanes and sleep villages surrounded by mountains.
The East Coast & Midlands; This is made up of counties such as; Kildare, Laois, Longford, Louth, Meath, North Offaly, Westmeath and Wicklow. The East Coast and Midlands stretches from the magnificent beaches of the east coast to the majestic Shannon in the Midlands.
The West; Counties such as Galway, Mayo and Roscommon. These three counties are on the very edge of Europe and offer rugged scenery, ancient pagan monuments and religious shrines
Shannon Region; comprising of the counties Clare. Limerick, North Tipperary and South Offaly offer the pastoral tranquillity of the river Shannon and on the open moors. A view of Ireland in ancient times and as close to time travel as it is possible.
The South West; Counties Kerry and Cork contain some of Irelands most scenic areas. The Ring of Kerry, the Skelligs, Blarney Castle and Ireland’s highest mountain – Carrauntoohill. The southwest is also home to two ports of major historical interest – Cobh Harbour and Blennerville.
The South East; Counties of Carlow, Kilkenny, South Tipperary, Waterford and Wexford. Waterford is Irelands oldest city and home to the world famous Waterford Crystal. Wexford hosts its renowned Opera Festival each year. Kilkenny is up there with Edinburgh Castle, the Tower of London and Mad King Ludwig’s castle in Bavaria. The Long Gallery houses an extensive collection of portraits of the Butlers who have lived in the castle since 1391 and are ancestors of Diana, Princess of Wales.
Northern Ireland has counties such as Antrim, Armagh, Down, Fermanagh, Londonderry and Tyrone. Home of the Giant’s causeway, the mountains of Mourne and the Antrim Coast Road.
The weather can change at any time in Ireland although; generally it is not too hot and not too cold therefore labelled as; Mild. The hottest months are generally from May-September with March, April and October being mild. January, February, November and December seem to be the coldest months although, still nice days.
Ireland’s culture comprises elements of the culture of ancient peoples, later immigrant and broadcast cultural influences. It is regarded as one of the Celtic ‘nations’ of Europe with Scotland, Wales, Cornwall, Isle of Man and Brittany. Ireland has made a large contribution to world literature in all its branches, particularly in the English language. Poetry in Irish is the oldest vernacular poetry in Europe, with the earliest examples dating from the 6th century. Sport is a major part of the culture in Ireland including; gaelic football, hurling and handball which are the best-known of the Irish traditional sports, collectively known as Gaelic games.
There are different languages used in Ireland. Irish is the main language, while others have been introduced through foreign settlements. Since the late nineteenth century, English has been the predominant first language. A large minority claim some ability to use Irish, but it is the first language for a small percentage of the population. Within the Republic of Ireland, under the Constitution of Ireland, both languages have official status, with Irish being the national and first official language.
The Food & Drink
Ireland is famous for many different food dishes and several different drinks including; Guinness. Irish cuisine is a style of cooking originating from Ireland or developed by Irish people. The cuisine takes its influence from the crops grown and animals farmed there. The introduction of the potato in the second half of the 16th century heavily influenced Ireland’s cuisine thereafter and, as a result, is often closely associated with Ireland. Representative Irish dishes including; Irish stew.