Discovering Irish Seaweed on the Ring of Kerry

Discovering Irish Seaweed on the Ring of Kerry

There are lots of reasons to visit County Kerry, in the south-west of Ireland, but you might not have thought that seaweed was one of them… I was lucky enough to meet John and Kerryann Fitzgerald of Atlantic Irish Seaweed (based near the beautiful Derrynane Beach) on...

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Blarney Castle: More Than Just a Kissing Stone

Blarney Castle: More Than Just a Kissing Stone

Why do more than 400,000 people a year visit Blarney Castle, in the south-west of Ireland? I’d always assumed that they all went to kiss the famous Blarney Stone, and not much more. Certainly that’s what I did, on a long ago visit to the nearby town of Cork. But I had...

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The Historic Places of County Kerry

The Historic Places of County Kerry

Ireland may be modern and vibrant, with a lively social scene, but it is also an ancient country. The first people arrived almost 10,000 years ago, travelling by boat from the continent of Europe. They soon began to leave their mark and today you will find evidence of...

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Books to Read Before You Visit Ireland

Books to Read Before You Visit Ireland

I’ve been thinking about what books I’d recommend to anyone visiting Ireland for the first time. It’s not an easy task. Ireland’s long and sometimes troubled history, combined with a rich folklore, has provided plenty of inspiration and lots of classic writers. Here...

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Dublin, a UNESCO City of Literature

Dublin, a UNESCO City of Literature

Dublin was the world’s 4th UNESCO City of Literature (after Edinburgh, Melbourne and Iowa City). But what does this actually mean? Well, it’s not just about having a rich literary heritage (although Dublin certainly has), but what all these cities also have in common...

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The Walls of Londonderry

The Walls of Londonderry

I always like walled cities. There’s something about walking right round a town, peering over the walls into little back streets, that gives me a sense of connection with all the people that have gone that way before. Sentries keeping a lookout for unwanted visitors,...

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The Ancient Sites of Inishowen

The Ancient Sites of Inishowen

Even the name is enough to conjure up a sense of ancient legends and history half-forgotten in the mists of time. Inishowen - the peninsula at the northern end of County Donegal in Ireland - is home to some of the earliest religious remains in the British Isles as...

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The Ghosts of Dunluce Castle

The Ghosts of Dunluce Castle

Standing alone on the edge of a tall rock, steep drops down to the sea on every side, and only connected to the mainland by a wooden bridge, Dunluce Castle in Northern Ireland has always been shrouded in mystery. Used as a fort ever since the Vikings sailed to the...

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