In association with: Tourism Ireland
When the nights draw in, Ireland extends its warm greetings to visitors with a range of indoor experiences and activities and delicious cuisine
There’s nothing cosier than tucking into a freshly cooked dish in a local pub next to a roaring fire, while enjoying live music and the company of locals. The island of Ireland comes alive in winter, with a host of indoor attractions and experiences that can be enjoyed in the colder months.
Just a short flight or ferry away, the island of Ireland is an ideal destination for a winter break. And thanks to the Common Travel Area, visitors from Great Britain can enjoy easy access to the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland, with no change to travel arrangements following the UK’s departure from the EU.
As winter approaches, Dublin and Belfast are ideal cities to visit, with world-class attractions and experiences that are suited to those who want to spend more time inside. In Northern Ireland, Titanic Belfast is a must-see, taking visitors through the making of the infamous ship.
The island of Ireland comes alive in winter
Ulster Museum is worth a stop to see the thousands of fossils on display, as well as works of art from all over the world. And Metropolitan Arts Centre in Belfast holds a range of exhibitions and performances, including music, theatre and festival events.
Meanwhile, Dublin in the Republic of Ireland is well set up for winter. The Guinness Storehouse is one of its most famous spots, with tours of the brewery ending with a drink at the Gravity Bar where visitors can admire 360° views of the city. Dublin’s cathedrals boast some incredible architecture, particularly St Patrick’s, which dates back to 1220. And what better way to wind down in the evening than in one of the local pubs or restaurants to enjoy a hearty meal and a homely atmosphere?
Whether it’s freshly caught seafood at a cafe on the coast, creative dishes served in Michelin-starred restaurants or colourful produce picked at a local market, the food and drink choices in Ireland are a foodie’s dream.
There are 21 Michelin-starred restaurants across the island of Ireland, many concentrated in Dublin and Cork, where Dede is the latest addition. But if traditional home-cooked cuisine is what your customers are looking for, they can’t go wrong in any of the cities’ local pubs.
Meanwhile, the Wild Atlantic Way coastline offers some of the best seafood, which can be found at pop-up stalls or enjoyed in the local restaurants. St George’s Market in Belfast is renowned as one of the best markets across the island of Ireland, where food stalls are piled high with flour-dusted loaves or local cheeses and diners can be seen tucking into hot bacon baps or steaming sausage rolls, often accompanied by live music.
The Wild Atlantic Way coastline offers some of the best seafood
Visitors looking for something more hands-on can tuck into a range of foodie experiences. These include cookery schools, such as Ballyknocken House and Cookery School, south of Dublin, while Blackstairs Ecotrails in County Carlow provides foraging experiences where participants learn to make beech leaf liqueur. Ireland also boasts a world-class whiskey industry, and its gin is gaining in popularity too, with more and more distilleries popping up across the island.
Whatever way your customers wish to spend their winter months, you can be assured they will be greeted with the warmest of welcomes.
The island of Ireland has put measures in place to reassure visitors that Covid-19 health and safety is at the top of its agenda. Tourism businesses display their ‘We’re Good to Go’ certification in Northern Ireland, while businesses in the Republic of Ireland exhibit a safety charter logo.
For the latest travel and public health advice, visit ireland.com
Common Travel Area
The Common Travel Area means it’s easy for your customers to visit the island of Ireland. British and Irish citizens can travel between the two countries without a passport or visa restrictions. However, some carriers may still require a passport for photo ID, so always check with the travel provider.
PICTURES: Tourism Ireland/Chris Hill; Donal Moloney Photography