Dreaming of a trip to the Emerald Isle? It’s one of our favorite spots in Europe—and a top pick for many travelers, too. Before any adventure that takes you somewhere new, it’s key to prep for what you’ll experience. Here are our pointers for what to know before you go to Ireland.
Pick the right tour for your interests
There are many things to consider when deciding how you’ll explore Ireland on tour. The length of your trip could be one factor: Would you prefer to get acquainted with the country on a week-long tour or spend two weeks seeing the whole thing on a Grand Tour? A particular interest could also drive your travel plans. If you love to visit destinations on foot, our Ireland Walking Tour might be a good choice, whereas if you have Irish heritage, an Ancestry Tour would be the perfect way to connect with your heritage. Or, maybe you’d like to visit during a festive occasion to celebrate with the locals during St. Patrick’s Day—we say, go for it!
Explore all our tours of Ireland here.
Pack for the unexpected
A trip to Ireland at any time of the year will introduce you to its culture, rich history, and beautiful landscapes.
As for the seasons, however, one thing remains constant: The unpredictable weather. It’s nothing that can’t be handled by smart packing, though! Bring lots of layers, a good pair of sneakers or boots, and have an umbrella handy in case of a spot shower. (And remember, each shower just enhances the shades of green scenery you’ll enjoy.)
Read more about our favorite reasons to visit Ireland in every season here.
Swap your dollars for euros
You’ll want to have some cash handy while on tour for making small purchases and tipping. Since Ireland doesn’t use the same currency as we do in North America, make a game plan ahead of time. You can purchase euros from your bank before you go, or make a stop at an ATM once your flight has touched down. Whichever you decide to do, make sure to let your bank know where and when you’ll be traveling before you take off.
Check out our currency exchange tips for a trip to Europe here.
Plan for some free time
While you’re on tour, you’ll have some opportunities to strike out on your own if you’d like to. Your Tour Director will always be available to give you recommendations, whether that means pointing you toward the local pub or the best museum near your hotel. Our advice is to also check out your itinerary in advance so you know the cities where you’ll have free time to explore—it can be fun to do some research on your own. Another handy tip? Download the Go Ahead Tour Companion app before you go, too, so you’ll have all the info you need about your trip right in your pocket.
Read our free time recommendations for Dublin here.
What tips do you have for taking an Ireland tour? Let us know in the comments below.