Whether you're planning your summer holidays somewhere new or choosing to save costs on an equally enjoyable staycation, Ireland promises a great choice for a summer holiday that's only a stone's throw from our British shores. From charming villages, and lively Irish bars to dramatic coastlines, there's something for everyone on the Emerald Isle.

Why You Need To Go On Your Summer Holidays in Ireland

a wee girls on her holidays in ireland
Let's start with the obvious question – why Ireland? Well, for starters, it's downright stunning. Picture-perfect landscapes dotted with ancient castles, rolling green hills as far as the eye can see, and rugged coastlines that will take your breath away. But Ireland offers more than just postcard-worthy views. It's a country steeped in history, culture, and warm hospitality. Summer in Ireland means long walks in the fresh air, lively music festivals like:

And plenty of opportunities to unwind with a pint of Ireland's famous Guinness or a creamy Irish coffee. Whether you're a nature enthusiast, a history buff, or a foodie looking to tantalise your taste buds, Ireland holidays cater to every taste. So, without further ado, let's dive into the best Ireland holidays that promise a summer holiday to remember:

The Best Ireland Holidays for Summer 2024

1. Dublin

go to dublin on your ireland holidays 2024
Best for:
An Irish city break
Kicking off our list of the best Ireland holidays is Ireland's iconic capital, Dublin. For those seeking a city break in Ireland, Dublin offers the perfect blend of fun activities, rowdy nightlife and rich history. Indulge in Michelin-starred dining at Chapter One or enjoy traditional Irish dishes with a view at The Winding Stair. Explore iconic landmarks such as Trinity College and Dublin Castle, and soak up the lively atmosphere of Temple Bar.

Where to stay in Dublin during your Ireland holidays

the mayson hotel is one of the best hotels in dublin
Looking for a city-centre Dublin hotel with a dose of luxury? You can't go wrong with The Mayson Dublin. This boutique Dublin hotel boats  94 bedrooms and luxruious suites and an incredible health suite complete with a pool, sauna and steam room.

The best things to do in Dublin during your Ireland holidays

If you're up for an action-packed city break in Ireland brimming with culture, Dublin is the place to be.

  • Dive into Dublin's Literary Scene: Get lost in Dublin's literary history with a fun walking tour. Check out spots connected to famous Irish writers like James Joyce, Oscar Wilde, and Samuel Beckett.
  • Explore Dublin's Cool Museums: Spend a day exploring Dublin's artsy side by visiting museums like the National Museum of Ireland, the Irish Museum of Modern Art, and the Dublin Writers Museum.
  • Hit the Pubs: Experience Dublin's famous pub culture with a pub crawl through lively areas like Temple Bar. Enjoy Irish music, delicious food, and of course, Guinness.
  • Check Out Dublin's Unique Sights: Dig deeper into Dublin's vibe by visiting cool spots like the Guinness Distillery, where you can learn all about Irish brewing. And don't miss the Irish Rock 'n' Roll Museum and the Epic Irish Migration Museum for a taste of Dublin's rich history and culture.

2. Galway

go to galway on your ireland holidays
Best for: a blend of city life and stunning scenery
Escape the digital noise and immerse yourself in the laid-back charm of Galway, nestled on Ireland's rugged west coast. Whether you're travelling solo, with friends, or as a couple, Galway invites you to experience the best of both worlds. With its lively streets, traditional Irish charm, and close proximity to stunning coastal scenery, this dynamic Irish holiday destination promises a perfect blend of city life and the joys of nature.

Where to stay in Galway during your Ireland holidays

galmont is one of the best hotels in ireland
For a serene escape in Galway, look no further than The Galmont Hotel & Spa. Situated by Lough Atalia, this elegant hotel offers stunning views of Galway Bay, luxurious amenities, and top-notch service.

Where to eat in Galway

When on your holidays in Galway, we recommend trying out authentic Irish food at Ard Bia at Nimmo's, where locally sourced ingredients shine in hearty dishes with a modern twist. This Galway restaurant is open for

The best things to do in Galway during your Ireland holidays

Here are three fun activities to help you disconnect and recharge in Galway:

  1. Stroll Along the Promenade: Take a leisurely walk along the Salthill Promenade, breathing in the salty sea air and feeling the warmth of the sun on your skin. Let the rhythmic sound of the waves soothe your soul as you watch seabirds soar overhead and sailboats drift lazily on the horizon.
  2. Explore Local Markets and Artisan Shops: Immerse yourself in Galway's vibrant arts and crafts scene by exploring local markets and artisan shops. Browse unique handmade goods, meet local artisans, and pick up souvenirs to remind you of your time spent off the grid.
  3. Attend a Traditional Music Session: Experience the magic of Irish music firsthand by attending a traditional music session in one of Galway's many pubs. Let the lively tunes and infectious energy lift your spirits as you tap your feet, clap your hands, and lose yourself in the joy of live music.

Galway's relaxed pace, rich cultural heritage, and stunning natural surroundings make it the ideal destination for a digital detox. Whether you're wandering through its charming streets, exploring its vibrant arts scene, or simply enjoying the moment, Galway promises an unforgettable escape where you can unplug, unwind, and reconnect with what truly matters.

3. Killarney

Best for: Families
Pack your bags and head to Killarney, where adventure, nature, and family fun await around every corner. Nestled amidst the picturesque landscapes of County Kerry, Killarney is the ultimate destination for families seeking an unforgettable holiday in Ireland. With its stunning national parks, charming villages, and endless outdoor activities, Killarney promises excitement and discovery for visitors of all ages.

Where to stay on your holidays in Killarney

For a family-friendly retreat in Killarney, consider booking a stay at the The Brehon Hotel & Spa. Situated within walking distance of Killarney National Park, this elegant hotel offers spacious rooms, excellent amenities, and a warm welcome for families.

Where to eat and drink in Killarney

After a day of adventure, treat your family to a delicious meal at Bricín Restaurant. With a focus on traditional Irish cuisine, this restaurant serves up hearty dishes made from locally sourced ingredients, ensuring a memorable dining experience for the whole family. Don't miss the chance to try their house specialty the Killarney Boxty (potatoe pancake).

The best things to do in Killarney during your Ireland holidays

Here are three activities to help you create unforgettable memories with your family in Killarney:

  1. Explore Killarney National Park: Embark on a family adventure through the breathtaking landscapes of Killarney National Park. Hike through ancient woodlands, spot native wildlife, and marvel at cascading waterfalls as you discover the beauty of Ireland's natural playground.
  2. Take a Boat Trip on the Lakes of Killarney: Hop aboard a traditional jaunting car or take a scenic boat trip on the Lakes of Killarney. Cruise past historic landmarks, majestic mountains, and hidden islands as you soak up the stunning scenery and learn about the area's rich history and folklore.
  3. Visit Muckross House and Gardens: Step back in time with a visit to Muckross House and Gardens, a grand Victorian mansion set amidst lush gardens and rolling lawns. Explore the elegant rooms of the house, stroll through the picturesque gardens, and enjoy family-friendly activities and events throughout the year.

Killarney's blend of natural beauty, cultural heritage, and family-friendly attractions make it the perfect destination for an Ireland holiday with your loved ones. Whether you're exploring the great outdoors, discovering historic landmarks, or simply enjoying quality time together, Killarney promises an unforgettable experience for the whole family.

4. Cork

cork is an ireland holisday great for couples
Best for: Couples
Nestled along Ireland's rugged coastline lies Cork, a unique Irish city that effortlessly blends old-world charm with cosmopolitan flair. Often referred to as the "Copenhagen of Ireland" for its picturesque streets and vibrant cultural scene, Cork offers couples a romantic escape like no other. Whether you're wandering hand in hand through its colourful streets, indulging in gourmet cuisine at cosy bistros, or exploring historic landmarks, Cork promises to ignite the flames of romance.

Absolutely, let's expand on Cork's section with a hotel recommendation and a food and drink suggestion:

4. Cork

go to cork on your ireland holidays
Best for: Culture and Cuisine
Get ready to immerse yourself in the vibrant culture and culinary delights of Cork, Ireland's charming southern city. With its lively markets, historic landmarks, and eclectic dining scene, Cork offers a feast for the senses that's sure to delight visitors of all ages.

Where to stay on your holidays in Cork

Experience the heart of Cork's hospitality with a stay at the The River Lee Hotel, located on the banks of the River Lee. This stylish hotel offers luxurious accommodations, modern amenities, and a central location within walking distance of Cork's top attractions.

Where to eat and drink in Cork

For a taste of Cork's culinary scene, head to The Old Oak, a beloved gastropub known for its hearty Irish fare and cozy atmosphere. Enjoy classic dishes like fish and chips, shepherd's pie, and traditional Irish stew, paired with a pint of locally brewed craft beer for the ultimate dining experience.

The best things to do in Cork during your holidays in Ireland

Here are three activities to help you craft the perfect romantic getaway in this charming Irish city.

  1. Stroll through the English Market: Lose yourselves in the bustling atmosphere of the historic English Market, where you can sample artisanal foods, pick up a bouquet of fresh flowers, and enjoy a leisurely lunch together at one of the market's charming cafes.
  2. Explore the Cobblestone Streets of Kinsale: Take a day trip to the picturesque town of Kinsale, known for its colorful buildings, quaint shops, and stunning harbor views. Wander hand in hand along its cobblestone streets, visit local galleries, and dine on fresh seafood at one of the town's renowned restaurants.
  3. Cruise along the River Lee: Embark on a romantic boat cruise along the scenic River Lee, where you can admire panoramic views of the city's skyline and soak up the tranquil atmosphere. Choose a sunset cruise for an extra touch of romance as you watch the city light up against the evening sky.

Cork's blend of European charm, cultural vibrancy, and natural beauty makes it the perfect destination for couples seeking a romantic escape. Whether you're exploring its historic landmarks, savoring its culinary delights, or simply enjoying each other's company, Cork promises to create unforgettable memories that you'll cherish for a lifetime.

5. Dingle Peninsula

beach holidays in ireland
Best for: 
Beach holidays

Tucked away on the wild Atlantic coast of County Kerry lies the Dingle Peninsula, a haven of tranquility and natural beauty. For those yearning for a serene beach getaway, Dingle Peninsula offers a family-friendly holiday in Ireland amidst breathtaking coastal vistas and pristine sandy shores. Picture-perfect beaches, secluded coves, and crystal-clear waters await, inviting you to unwind, explore, and create cherished memories together.

Where to stay on the Dingle Peninsula

Experience the magic of the Dingle Peninsula with a stay at Dingle Skellig Hotel, nestled on the shores of Dingle Bay. This luxurious hotel offers spacious rooms, breathtaking sea views, and world-class amenities, providing the perfect base for exploring the wonders of the peninsula.

Where to eat and drink on the Dingle Peninsula

For a taste of the peninsula's culinary delights, dine at The Boatyard Restaurant, a charming seafood restaurant overlooking Dingle Harbor. Indulge in fresh-caught seafood dishes, such as Dingle Bay crab claws, pan-seared Atlantic salmon, and mouthwatering seafood chowder, all expertly prepared to showcase the flavours of the region.

The best things to do on the Dingle Peninsula during your Ireland holidays

Here are three activities to help you explore the natural wonders and cultural treasures of the Dingle Peninsula

  1. Bask in the Sunshine at Inch Beach: Sink your toes into the soft golden sands of Inch Beach, where miles of unspoiled coastline meet the azure waters of the Atlantic Ocean. Enjoy a leisurely stroll along the shore, take a refreshing dip in the sea, or simply lounge together and savor the warmth of the sun on your skin.
  2. Discover Hidden Gems at Coumeenoole Beach: Escape the crowds and discover the secluded beauty of Coumeenoole Beach, nestled amidst rugged cliffs and emerald-green hills. Explore tide pools teeming with marine life, marvel at dramatic sea stacks rising from the ocean, and feel the invigorating sea breeze as you revel in the untouched splendor of this coastal gem.
  3. Experience Adventure at Ventry Beach: Dive into the invigorating waters of Ventry Beach, where sheltered bays and rolling waves beckon adventure seekers and water lovers alike. Try your hand at kayaking, paddleboarding, or windsurfing together, and embrace the thrill of exploring the coastline from a new perspective.

The Dingle Peninsula offers a blissful retreat for couples seeking solace, adventure, and romance amidst nature's beauty. Whether you're strolling hand in hand along pristine shores, discovering hidden treasures along the coastline, or embracing the exhilaration of water sports, Dingle Peninsula promises an unforgettable beach escape for you and your loved one.

6. The Cliffs of Moher

The Cliffs of Moher is one of the best ireland holidays
Best for: 
Nature lovers

Nestled along the windswept coast of County Clare, the Cliffs of Moher stand as an awe-inspiring testament to the raw beauty of Ireland's landscape. For couples seeking a serene retreat amidst nature's grandeur, the cliffs offer an unparalleled escape. With their rugged cliffs plunging into the Atlantic Ocean and panoramic views stretching to the horizon, this iconic landmark invites you to rediscover the simple pleasures of togetherness in the embrace of Mother Nature.

Where to stay near the Cliffs of Moher

Experience the magic of the Cliffs of Moher with a stay at Lahinch Coast Hotel, located just a short drive from the most famous cliffs in Ireland. This modern hotel offers comfortable accommodations, stunning sea views, and easy access to the area's top attractions, making it the perfect base for exploring the wonders of County Clare.

Where to eat and drink near the Cliffs of Moher

For a taste of local flavours and warm hospitality, dine at Moran's Oyster Cottage, a charming seafood restaurant located near the village of Kilcolgan. Indulge in fresh-caught seafood dishes, such as creamy seafood chowder, grilled Atlantic salmon, and plump oysters harvested from nearby Galway Bay, all served in a cozy, traditional setting that captures the essence of Irish hospitality.

The best things to do at the Cliffs of Moher during your Ireland holidays

Here are three activities to help you experience the magic and majesty of the Cliffs of Moher:

  1. Breathe in the Sea Air: Take a leisurely stroll along the cliff-top paths, breathing in the salty sea air and feeling the gentle caress of the ocean breeze. Find a quiet spot to sit together, watching as waves crash against the cliffs below, and feel a sense of peace wash over you.
  2. Explore Hidden Gems: Wander off the beaten path to discover hidden vantage points and secluded alcoves along the cliffs. Marvel at the unique rock formations, observe nesting seabirds in their natural habitat, and let the rugged beauty of the landscape inspire a sense of wonder and exploration.
  3. Chase the Sunset: As day turns to dusk, witness the cliffs come alive with the warm glow of the setting sun. Find the perfect vantage point to watch as the sky is painted in hues of orange and pink, casting a spellbinding light over the landscape. Embrace the beauty of the moment, hand in hand with your loved one, and create memories that will last a lifetime.

The Cliffs of Moher offer a sanctuary for couples seeking solace, inspiration, and connection amidst the untamed beauty of Ireland's coastline. Whether you're admiring breathtaking views, exploring hidden treasures, or simply enjoying each other's company, the cliffs promise an unforgettable retreat where you can reconnect with nature and each other.

7. Causeway Coast, Co. Antrim

Best for: Cultural highlights
Step into a world of ancient legends and natural wonders on the Causeway Coast of Co. Antrim, where history, culture, and adventure collide. Perfect for families eager to uncover hidden treasures and embark on unforgettable journeys, this enchanting region offers a tapestry of experiences waiting to be explored. From the iconic Giant's Causeway to historic castles and charming seaside towns, the Causeway Coast promises excitement and discovery for visitors of all ages.

Where to stay on the Causeway Coast

Experience the magic of the Causeway Coast with a stay at Bushmills Inn, a historic coaching inn nestled in the heart of Bushmills village. This charming hotel offers cozy accommodations, warm hospitality, and easy access to the area's top attractions, making it the perfect base for exploring the wonders of the Causeway Coast.

Where to eat and drink on the Causeway Coast

For a taste of local flavors and traditional Irish cuisine, dine at The Nook in Castlerock, a cozy gastropub known for its hearty dishes and welcoming atmosphere. Indulge in classic Irish fare, such as Guinness beef stew, fish and chips, and mouthwatering homemade desserts, all made with locally sourced ingredients and served with a side of friendly Irish hospitality.

The best things to do on the Causeway Coast during your Ireland holidays

Here are three activities to help you explore the natural wonders and historic landmarks of the Causeway Coast:

  1. Discover the Giant's Causeway: Embark on a mythical adventure to the Giant's Causeway, a UNESCO World Heritage Site shrouded in legend and mystery. Marvel at the otherworldly rock formations, explore the Giant's Boot and Wishing Chair, and let your imagination run wild as you uncover the secrets of this ancient geological wonder.
  2. Explore Dunluce Castle: Journey back in time with a visit to Dunluce Castle, perched dramatically on the cliffs overlooking the North Atlantic Ocean. Explore the ruins of this medieval fortress, imagine life in centuries past, and soak up panoramic views of the coastline below.
  3. Experience Family-Friendly Fun in Portrush: Head to the seaside town of Portrush for a day of family-friendly fun and adventure. Take a thrilling ride on the Barry's Amusements rollercoaster, build sandcastles on the golden beaches, and sample delicious ice cream as you explore the charming streets and shops.

The Causeway Coast is a treasure trove of cultural relics and family-friendly attractions, offering a perfect blend of history, adventure, and natural beauty. Whether you're exploring ancient wonders, discovering hidden gems, or simply enjoying quality time together, the Causeway Coast promises an unforgettable holiday experience for the whole family.

8. Inishbofin, Co Galway

cows on the island of Inishbofin
Best for:
True seclusion

For travellers seeking true seclusion and a chance to reconnect with nature, Inishbofin offers an idyllic Ireland holiday away from the crowds. With its rugged coastline, secluded beaches, and peaceful landscapes, this hidden gem in Ireland invites you to unwind, recharge, and immerse yourself in the serenity of island life. Here are three activities to help you embrace tranquility and find your own slice of paradise on Inishbofin:

Activities on Inishbofin:

  1. Walk Along Remote Coastal Paths: Lace up your hiking boots and set out to explore the island's network of coastal paths, where dramatic cliffs, hidden coves, and breathtaking sea views await. Lose yourself in the rugged beauty of your surroundings, breathe in the fresh sea air, and feel a sense of peace wash over you as you wander at your own pace.
  2. Relax on Secluded Beaches: Seek out one of Inishbofin's secluded beaches, where pristine sands, crystal-clear waters, and uninterrupted vistas create the perfect setting for relaxation and contemplation. Pack a picnic, spread out a blanket, and spend the day soaking up the sunshine, listening to the gentle lapping of waves, and feeling the cares of the world drift away.
  3. Stargaze Under Dark Skies: As night falls, escape to the tranquillity of the island's dark skies and embark on a stargazing adventure like no other. Far from the bright lights of the mainland, Inishbofin offers unparalleled opportunities to marvel at the celestial wonders above. Wrap up warm, find a quiet spot to lay back and gaze at the stars, and let the beauty of the cosmos ignite your imagination and fill you with wonder.

Inishbofin is a haven for those seeking true seclusion and a chance to reconnect with the natural world. Whether you're exploring rugged coastal paths, relaxing on secluded beaches, or stargazing under dark skies, Inishbofin promises an unforgettable escape where you can truly leave the cares of the world behind.

9. Connemara

Connemara on your ireland holidays
Best for: Unspoiled landscapes
Escape the hustle and bustle of modern life with a visit to Connemara. This rugged region is home to some of Ireland's most stunning landscapes, including rugged mountains, shimmering lakes, and windswept beaches. Explore the charming village of Clifden, hike through the wild beauty of Connemara National Park, and marvel at the ancient stone forts of Inishbofin Island.

Where to stay in Connemara

Experience Connemara's charm with a stay at Connemara Sands Hotel, a beautiful hotel overlooking Mannin Bay. This seaside gem provides comfortable accommodations, stunning ocean views, and a relaxed atmosphere, ensuring a restful stay surrounded by Connemara's natural beauty.

Where to dine in Connemara

For a taste of local Irish food, head to John Joe's in Pollagh, a welcoming pub serving up hearty Irish fare. Enjoy classic dishes made with fresh, locally sourced ingredients, paired with a pint of Guinness and friendly conversation.

10. Burren, Co. Clare

go on your irish holidays to Burren, Co Clare
Best for: Nature lovers
Calling all nature enthusiasts! Prepare to be captivated by the breathtaking beauty of the Burren, nestled in Co. Clare. This extraordinary landscape, with its limestone pavements, hidden caves, and rare flora, is a true haven for nature lovers seeking to immerse themselves in the wonders of the natural world. From tranquil walks to exhilarating hikes, the Burren offers endless opportunities to explore and connect with the diverse ecosystems that call this unique region home.

Where to stay in Burren

For a comfortable stay amidst nature, consider Burren Castle Hotel. With spacious rooms and stunning views, it's the perfect base for your Burren adventure.

Where to eat in Burren

Head to Linnanes Lobster Bar in New Quay for delicious seafood and traditional Irish dishes. It's the ideal spot to refuel after a day outdoors.

The best things to do in Burren

Here are three activities to help you unlock the secrets of Burren and experience its natural splendour:

  • Explore Ancient Stone Formations: Embark on a journey through time as you wander amidst the ancient stone formations that characterize the Burren's rugged landscape. Marvel at the limestone pavements, megalithic tombs, and mysterious stone circles that dot the countryside, and let your imagination roam as you contemplate the stories they hold.
  • Discover Hidden Caves and Gorges: Delve into the hidden depths of Burren's limestone labyrinth and uncover its secret treasures. Explore subterranean caves, winding gorges, and underground rivers, where ancient rock formations and crystal-clear pools create a world of wonder waiting to be explored.
  • Witness Diverse Flora and Fauna: Immerse yourself in the rich biodiversity of the Burren, where rare and endangered species thrive in harmony with the unique limestone habitat. Keep your eyes peeled for vibrant wildflowers, elusive orchids, and rare butterflies as you explore the region's diverse ecosystems, and marvel at the resilience of life in this seemingly inhospitable landscape.

Burren is a must-visit destination for nature lovers seeking to experience the raw beauty and untamed wilderness of Ireland's unique landscape. Whether you're exploring ancient stone formations, discovering hidden caves, or marvelling at the region's diverse flora and fauna, Burren promises an unforgettable adventure that will leave you awe-inspired and rejuvenated.

Will you go on a summer holiday in Ireland?

a woman on her ireland holidays
So there you have it – the top ten Ireland holidays 2024. Whether you're exploring ancient castles, hiking through stunning landscapes, or simply soaking up the atmosphere in a lively pub, Ireland promises an experience like no other. So why wait? Start planning your summer getaway to Ireland today and discover the magic of the Emerald Isle for yourself.

Gift an Ireland Holiday with The Best Present for Travel Lovers

the best present for travel lovers is a hotelgift
Looking for the perfect gift for the travel lover in your life? Look no further than our hotel gift vouchers. With a hotel gift certificate, you can give the gift of an Ireland summer holiday, allowing your loved one to fly to multiple Irish destinations and hundreds of other destinations worldwide. We're talking:

Whether they're dreaming of exploring the rugged landscapes of Ireland or embarking on a bucket-list trip abroad, Hotelgift has them all covered since our personalised gift cards can be redeemed with over 750,000 hotels worldwide. Our gift cards for hotels are available in three convenient Hotelgift formats so whether you want to hand it over in person, send it by email or post it to their door, our hotel gifts can reach all recipients no matter where they are. Once your recipient has their hotel gift card, they can easily book their hotel via our website and if any questions arise, they can contact our excellent 24/7 customer service.