Places to sleep in Ireland are as varied as the landscape. Hotels, bed & breakfasts, and hostels can be found near every scenic vista and bustling town. But why opt for a traditional stay when, with only a little searching, you can spend the night in a truly unique Irish lodging?
The protected peninsula of Rosses Point, reaching from Sligo like a small hand between Sligo Harbour and Drumcliff Bay, is a well known local holiday spot. The sandy beach, ocean-side golf course, and marina, draw families searching for an active, yet relaxing, break. Yeats Country Hotel, the only hotel at the end of the quiet peninsula, is a perfect spot for visitors looking to get off the tourist trail along the Wild Atlantic Way. Our three night stay gave us just a taste of this fabulous area and comfort of this full service hotel in Sligo....
Kingstown House Bed and Breakfast is a perfect choice if you’re staying in Clifden. Located right in the center of town, it’s a quick and easy stroll to shops and pubs.
Kingstown House has been a bed and breakfast since the current owner, Regina Hopkins, was young and her mother was the hostess. Both Regina and her husband Jim worked in hospitality in the US, and what they learned in hotel management they have applied to their eight room B&B.
Towering evergreens decked in ribbons and lights. Holiday classics playing in the background as you decorate sugar cookies. Letters to Santa sealed with candy cane kisses. There is really nothing more special than celebrating holidays with kids. It’s so easy to believe in the magic of the season as you watch their eyes sparkle in the glow of twinkling lights or you hear their sweet voices sing along to a favorite holiday song.
Add extra enchantment and make new memories this Christmas with these wonderful family vacation ideas filled with the spirit of the holidays.
Air BnB in Ireland is a wonderful hybrid of cottages and private rooms for rent with a smattering of bed & breakfasts and hostels including their lodging for additional business exposure. The options are nearly endless… depending on where in Ireland you search your options can include private castles, thatch-roofed cottages, and city center apartments.
But not all AirBnB properties are created equally. While I have been very fortunate with AirBnB properties I have used, I have had a fair number of people contact me, in a bit of a panic, due to their own booked properties canceling mere weeks- or days- before their arrival.
Even in a place as magnificent as Ireland, some places just stand out as special. One of the most special for me is the town of Bruff, County Limerick. Just 30 minutes south of Limerick City, Bruff is perfectly situated to serve as your base for touring western Ireland.
The Old Bank is termed a luxury B&B. But before that makes you stop reading I want to let you in on a little secret. Miriam has four little ones of her own- the youngest born just 3 days (!!!) before our arrival. My daughters immediately ran off with Miriam’s girls, and Miriam and I settled in for a chat.
As the name implies, the B&B is located in an old bank. Photos of the building when it was purchased show a dilapidated interior which is unimaginable as you relax in the timelessly decorated sitting room. As Miriam explained the time, planning, tears and elation that went into this magnificent dream of her family’s, I was amazed at her strength- she’s a feisty one!
Jody is flashing back to an interview she had with Anthony Moloney, owner of the wonderful Doolin Hostel. Click on the link to learn more about the Doolin Hostel.
I can’t emphasize it enough – the best Ireland vacations are the ones where you stay in fewer locations and really explore the surrounding area. To well explore the south-eastern section of Ireland you can’t do better than a self catering cottage in Cahir, County Tipperary.
Often called the ‘Crossroads of the South’, Cahir is wonderfully located in the southern part of Tipperary, offering easy day trips will take you inland or to the edges of Ireland.
Ireland is a land made of romance. Across the country you’ll find hauntingly beautiful castles built in the name of love, ballads being sung of love lost and found, even one of Ireland’s most recognized symbols, the Claddagh, was created in the name of love.
So it’s no wonder couples visit Ireland on their honeymoon or to rekindle the flames of romance banked by kids, work, and hectic schedules.
Romantic getaways in Ireland can be as varied as your budget or interests. During our Ireland vacations we’ve found many places that brought us closer as a couple and strengthened our marriage. As you’ll see, it wasn’t the money spent that brought us closer, but the time together (though the surroundings didn’t hurt!)
Ireland Budget Travel Tips: including advice from Jody Halsted, Ireland Family Vacations
Knappogue Castle, owned and managed by Shannon Heritage, was once open for public tours. Though the walled garden is still available to visitors, there are only two ways into the castle: the nightly Medieval Banquet from April – October or via castle rental, for an event or lodging.
Parking in front of the castle, we walked to the massive iron-gated doors, turned the huge wrought handle – and let ourselves in.
It was kind of a rush, opening those doors. And then, almost magically, we were greeted by Claire, who, with her friend Dina, would become our “Fairy Godmothers” during our stay.
“You’re very welcome to Knappogue Castle,” Claire said to us as she led the way through stone corridors hung with tapestries that I promised myself I would closely examine later. Then we were through a door marked “Staff Only” and up a flight of red carpeted stairs.
PRIVATE the door said. And, opening it, we began our Ireland castle vacation.
There are some places that just beg you to return to them year round. For my family, that spot is Eureka Springs, Arkansas.
A charming mix of Ozark Mountain town, Victorian Spa escape, and eclectic art community makes Eureka Springs a fun – and funky — getaway.
Eureka Springs is best explored on foot. Bring good walking shoes because this is no regular town! Paved sidewalks, steep stairs between buildings, and even forested pathways lead you up and down the steep Ozark hills. These paths take you past the small parks built where springs gurgle forth, to brightly painted store fronts with large shop windows where eclectic displays drew us through the doors. My tip: take the shuttle to the Crescent Hotel which overlooks the town and let your explorations take you downhill.
Ireland is a magical land perfect for family travel. As your plane touches down, the shimmer of the raindrop covered grass may convince you that emeralds cover the hilltops. Every turn you take along the ancient, winding roads is more magnificent than the next. And absolutely anything is possible.
The average length of an Ireland family vacation is 9 days – including flight days.
What’s the best way for a multigenerational group to travel in Ireland?
Oh, how I love this question! My mother has joined us in Ireland a couple of times, and I can’t tell you how wonderful it is to have her along. The benefits are so numerous! Firstly, my mom gets to see places she wouldn’t visit alone. Secondly, any child-grandparent interaction is magical – and in Ireland it is only more so. And third, it allows my husband and I a night out, alone, which we rarely get when traveling.