Gavin Hyland gives us his top reasons for a staycation this summer in the Emerald Isle.
Ireland continually makes Top 10 lists for travel destinations and every other type of award imaginable in the travel industry, so why do so many Irish people leave the island to find adventure?
 
Cost is a huge factor which decides where and when we can travel. Flights and accommodation are getting cheaper but how expensive is an Irish holiday?
 
Recently I visited Galway for the first time. I had heard so many good things about the city and I was not disappointed. I have visited many European cities over the last two years but sunrise over Galway bay is as good a sight as you will see anywhere in the world.
 
Thanks to NUIG, Galway has plenty of accommodation for all sorts of budgets and a return student train ticket cost €23. Getting there was not too expensive at all and once you arrive in Galway you have plenty of pubs, restaurants and shops to explore.
 
There was not loads to do in Galway but a visit to Salthill and a walk along the bay is a must. Galway also has a great nightlife. For anybody who loves the city break, Galway offers something refreshingly different.
 
There are no large queues, no masses of tourists and no extortionate prices for basic goods. Galway is a gorgeous mix of rural Ireland and a city break.
 
So many times, I have heard that students can’t afford to travel and for many that is just the case but travel does not have to mean three months in Bali. Travel can mean a weekend in Galway and the bus to Westport for another night or two. The beauty of travel is that it can mean whatever you want it to mean.
 
With air fares getting cheaper and accommodation apps making it ever easier to find more affordable places to stay, Europe is more accessible than ever before. Costs often come hidden with city taxes and huge prices on food and drinks in tourist areas of Paris, London and Rome.
 
The west of Ireland may seem less exciting but you can only really decide that once you have seen it. For €23 and a two-hour train journey from Dublin you could be on the other side of the country. Travel never seemed so affordable.
 
Of course, Europe is amazing and some of the cities are the best in the world but remember if global travel bloggers are coming here, Ireland must have something to offer because they are not coming for a sun tan. Don’t spend half your savings travelling hundreds of miles to see something that was on your doorstep the entire time.