Our Travel Editor Eimear is back with another weekly travel article.
For the third instalment of the weekly travel series, I thought I’d focus on our own lovely island! I think it’s so important to explore our own country as well as others. Here are 5 counties you should definitely consider for your next weekend break or getaway. In no particular order:
 

Co.Clare

Clare is a beautifully scenic county. Clare is home to an abundance of small, friendly tourist towns like Kilkee, Miltown Malbay and Ennis. There’s plenty to see and do- the Cliffs of Moher, Alwee Caves, Scattery Island The Burren and of course, Bunratty Castle and folk park. There’s also a chocolate factory in BellHarbour where you can get a tour and watch the chocolate being made! There’s no shortage of pubs and restaurants either, and it’d never difficult to find some live trad music! The Willy Clancy festival is always a big hit in the Summer too.

 

Co. Galway

The city itself is gorgeous, even a stroll around Latin Quarter, Eyre Square and The Spanish Arch is worthwhile. There’s usually a good buzz around the city too! You can visit Galway City museum at no cost, or take a boat trip to the Aran Islands. You can also get to the cliffs of Moher from here or enjoy a walk around Connemara National Park. Salthill is a lovely seaside resort and really comes to life when the sun shines! It’s also a short walk from the city and there are lovely views along the way. Galway, much like Clare, has no shortage of lively pubs and restaurants with live music. You can also play room escape games in the city, if that’s something that might interest you! Charlie Byrne’s bookshop is definitely worth a visit, as is Galway Market.
 

Co. Kerry

This may seem biased coming from a Kerry woman, but Kerry really is a beautiful place. Dingle Peninsula, The Gap of Dunloe, The Lakes of Killarney, Inch beach, Carrauntouhill and the Skellig Islands are just some of the amazing scenic attractions. Take a tour of Dingle distillery, visit Tralee Bay Wetlands or Kerry County Museum. Killarney National Park and Kells Bay Garden are worth a trip too! Ballybunion is the Kerry equivalent of Salthill and there’s usually a good buzz around!
 

Co. Dublin

Dublin, being the capital, is obviously quite cultured. There are a vast range of museums and galleries to explore, and of course they are all free of charge! The national gallery of Ireland is particularly great. It goes without saying that a trip to Dublin is a great opportunity to do some shopping. Take a wander to temple bar for the vintage shops or head to Dundrum or Jervis on a rainy day. The Guinness storehouse may be worth a look or perhaps, the Jameson Distillery. You can never be short of things to do in Dublin!
 

Co.Cork

Cork is home to Blarney Castle and Fota Wildlife Park as well as Cork Public museum and as it turns out, there’s a butter factory there, in case that interests you. The English Market serves some lovely treats. Crawford Art Gallery is definitely one of my favourite galleries and is situated in the heart of the city. If you like donuts then Cork is the perfect place for your trip! Also, there are some great shops in Cork city so that’s another bonus.
 
If you’re planning a trip to any of these places, don’t forget to take full advantage of Air BnB! It’s much cheaper than hotels usually are and once your host has good reviews you should be good to go!