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VISITING IRELAND IN 2015


Ireland beckons, like an old friend inviting you to come back. There’s so much to do and see all across the island, from the exciting Wild Atlantic Way trek up the western coastline of Ireland, to the rugged Causeway Coastal Route of Northern Ireland. Wherever you go, you’ll find a treasure of music festivals, literary gatherings and culinary events.

Ireland’s 32 counties are promoted in North America by Tourism Ireland. You can find full details on visiting Ireland, including flights, accommodations, car rentals, tour groups, activities and more by visiting
Ireland.com.

THE WILD ATLANTIC WAY

The Wild Atlantic Way – even the phrase itself evokes a freedom and sense of discovery that makes traveling so alluring.

For visitors seeking to explore the byways and coastline of the island’s west coast, this is the perfect way to do it. The entire itinerary of over 150 suggested stops takes you from County Cork up to County Donegal, a 1500 mile trek that crosses nine counties and opens up endless possibilities.

Every county has its own richness and beauty, but County Sligo is certainly a hub of activity this summer, thanks to the Yeats Celebrations, honoring the birth of poet William Butler Yeats, and also the Fleadh Ceoil, which features some of the best traditional music, singing and dancing to be found.

The beauty of the Wild Atlantic Way is that you can select your own way. Want to watch dolphins sunbathing, or surfers crashing the waves? Would you like to dance a jig in a pub, or eat oysters over a pint of stout? Want to take hikes up mountain trails or wander through tiny villages set along the coast? All of this is possible, and more.

Thanks to the expanded air service from Boston to Shannon Airport, stepping onto the Wild Atlantic Way is easier than ever. Book your ticket, map out your trip, and take the road you always wanted to travel.
Ireland.com.

Cliffs of Moher, County Clare

SLIGO TOWN = AMAZING IRISH MUSIC, SONG & DANCE

For the second year in a row, the annual Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann, Ireland’s week-long festival of music, song and dance, is returning to Sligo Town on August 9-16, 2015.

Sligo Fleadh Cheoil (Irish Traditional Music Festival)

That’s great news for the 350,000 visitors who flock to this music competition each year from all corners of the world. Over 6,000 musicians compete in 400 competitions, from fiddle and tin whistle playing to set dancing and Sean-nós (solo) singing. Plus there are daily concerts, workshops, courses and activities designed to connect the audience with the artists.

Sligo is seeped in music tradition, with names like Michael Coleman, James Morrison, Seamus Tansey, Kevin Burke, Carmel Gunning and many more.
fleadhcheoil.ie | Ireland.com.

CELEBRATE YEATS IN SLIGO

Ireland is proud of its poet William Butler Yeats (1865-1939) and why not! Winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1923, Yeats helped launch Ireland’s literary revival and form the Abbey Theatre, while creating a body of poetry that continues to inspire people throughout the world.

2015 marks the 150th anniversary of Yeats’ birth. Celebrations are taking place all over Ireland, with much of the activities rooted in County Sligo, which is part of the Wild Atlantic Way. Yeats spend much of his life in Sligo, and he and his family are buried in a church yard in the Village of Drumcliffe, in the shadow of a mountain ridge called Benbulben’s Head. More details here.

Benbulben, Co. Sligo

July 26-August 7
56th Yeats International Summer School
Several local scholars are lecturing at the 2015 Yeats Summer School, including Helen Vendler of Harvard University, John Paul Riquelme of Boston University and Marjorie Howes of Boston College. Others speakers include poets Eavan Boland, Medbh McGuckian and Bernard O’Donoghue.

 

July 26-August 7
56th Yeats International Summer School
Several local scholars are lecturing at the 2015 Yeats Summer School, including Helen Vendler of Harvard University, John Paul Riquelme of Boston University and Marjorie Howes of Boston College. Others speakers include poets Eavan Boland, Medbh McGuckian and Bernard O’Donoghue.

Yeats2015.com | yeatssociety.com | Ireland.com

NORTHERN IRELAND’S CAUSEWAY COASTAL ROUTE

By now you’ve heard of HBO’s hit series, Game of Thrones, which is filmed along the sensational Causeway Coast and Glens of Northern Ireland. Now is your chance to travel on this scenic tour, which pundits are calling “one of the world’s great road journeys.”

Dark Hedges, Stranocum, County Antrim

The 120 mile drive, stretching from Belfast to Derry, takes you along some of the most rugged and spectacular scenery you are likely to encounter.

The Causeway Coastal Route starts out in Belfast, a vibrant city with great hotels and dining, bursting with possibility. Out on the road, you’ll pass historical castles, churches and forts, set against windswept cliffs, unspoiled beaches and tidy green villages dotting the landscape. The Causeway Coastal Route brings you up close to historical places with a timeless glory that inspires and humbles the traveler: the Glens of Antrim, Giant’s Causeway, Carrickfergus and Dunluce Castle. Finally, you arrive over the Peace Bridge into Derry/Londonderry, an ancient walled city brimming with personality and verve.

The Giants Causeway, Co. Antrim

These northern counties are filled with beauty and history, populated by sturdy people grown rugged by the landscape, yet transformed by the magic of their natural surroundings. Take the Causeway Coastal Route, and see for yourself.

Ireland.com | discovernorthernireland.com

Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge, County Antrim

EVENTS TO SEE

June 8-14
Belfast Book Festival
Belfast celebrates its considerable literary heritage and tradition with this global gathering of novelists, poets, playwrights and non-fiction writers. Activities include Poetry Slam, dramatic readings, workshops and literary activities for children.
belfastbookfestival.com


July 14-19
5th Annual Dundalk LGBT Pride Festival
This spring, Ireland became the first country to allow gay marriage by popular vote. The Dundalk LGBT fest features a parade, open music night, barbecues and other activities to celebrate Ireland’s gay community.
dundalkpride.com

 

August 12-16
Terryglass Arts Festival
Set in the rich Tipperary countryside just next to the River Shannon, the Terryglass Arts Festival celebrates its 17th year with an eclectic mix of visual arts, music, film, workshops, comedy, street performance and food and crafts market.
terryglassartsfestival.ie

 

September 24-27
Galway International Oyster & Seafood Festival
Launched in 1954, Ireland’s most prominent food festival has been described as “one of the 12 greatest shows on earth” by The Sunday Times. There is plenty of fresh seafood, live music and cultural activities leading up to the main show: the annual Oyster Shucking Competition, where fishermen from around the world vie for the coveted prize of being the fastest oyster shucker.
galwayoysterfestival.com

Galway International Oyster & Seafood Festival

 



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