Ireland is a gorgeous country with picturesque scenery at every turn. Talk about the photo ops! From the rolling countryside to the ancient castles, there is something for everyone in Ireland. The opportunities for stunning shots are endless. Here is a list of 18 authentic Irish photos for your travel blog!
The Blarney Stone (Blarney Castle)
The Blarney stone is a stone that sits on the Blarney castle. It is said if you bend backward from the top of the castle while holding on to the railing and kiss the stone, that it brings about eloquence and persuasiveness. The rumor has been about for a few centuries; even back in 1912, Winston Churchill leaned back and kissed the stone.
The Rock of Cashel
One of the most iconic tourist attractions in Ireland, The Rock of Cashel is said to have structures that dated back to as early as the 12th century. Before the Norman invasion, The Rock of Cashel was where the High King of Munster ruled. While some of it is in ruins, it is still an amazing sight to see. With the moss-covered bricks, the contrast with the countryside, it is a breathtaking sight.
Rathlin Island is just off the coast of Co Antrim Northern Ireland and its the only inhabited offshore island of N. Ireland. The island has just a population of around 130 people, and is also the most northerly inhabited island off the coast of Ireland.
As an area of Conservation, Rathlin Island boasts Northern Ireland’s largest seabird sanctuary.
At its Seabird Centre, you will see close-up view of Northern Ireland’s biggest seabird colony. Puffins and other seabirds congregating in their thousands to breed from April to August.
From the visitor centre it is a short scenic walk down to the viewing platform, where binoculars are available to use. As part of Irish Lights’ Great Lighthouses of Ireland trail’, visitors can find the islands very unique ‘upside down’ lighthouse, learning about the history and the people who lived and worked in it.
The Cliffs of Moher
This is the most popular and arguably one of the most beautiful places in Ireland.
The Cliffs of Moher are in County Clare along The Wild Atlantic Way.
The stunning cliffs have stood against the Atlantic Ocean for 350 million years.
They stretch about 9 miles (14 km) and, at their highest point, reach up to 214 feet (702 km).
They are a majestic and iconic part of Ireland.
Dunluce Castle is located close to a headland that plunges dramatically straight into the sea.
The Castle was the headquarters of the MacDonnell Clan, many raging battles were fought over possession of the castle. It eventually succumbed to the power of nature, when part of it fell into the sea on a stormy night in 1639.
There is archaeological evidence that a village that surrounded the castle was destroyed by fire in 1641. The site has also witnessed the sinking of a colony ship that broke up on the rocks off Islay in 1857 with the loss of 240 lives.
This spectacular location is where you can truly escape everyday life and experience nature in its most fundamental.
Sir Berkeley Deane an Irish railway engineer, built the Gobbins cliff pathway. He designed and built the path as a tourist attraction for the Belfast and Northern Counties Railway Company.
Thousands of people visited The Gobbins during the 20th century. The Gobbins Cliffs, with its bore caves and natural aquariums has no parallel in Europe as a marine cliff walk’.
The Gobbins experience takes you along a narrow path passing its dramatic cliff face, across spectacular bridges along side the crashing waves of the Irish Sea, up and down rugged staircases carved deep into the cliff face and into caves that were once used to smugglers and pirates.
The Path is a difficult trek and is narrow and uneven with its access by a very steep pathway.
Due to its nature of the rugged location it is essential to wear suitable clothing and good walking boots with good tread and ankle support. Visitors must wear a safety helmet when experiencing The Gobbins path. Blackhead Lighthouse can be seen from the location.
Also, located in County Clare, Poulnaborne Burren is an archaeological monument – a man-made stone formation called a portal tomb. It is an ancient free-standing tomb. They are constructed of four large stones, two standing side by side vertically, and directly across from them stand two, mirroring the first.
On top of those stones are one larger slab directly on top and a final slab resting on the ground at the rear of the tomb. Excavations as recent as the 1980’s have unearthed human remains and ‘grave goods.’
Argued to be Ireland’s “only true” fjord, the Killary Fjord was born from a glacier that eroded this beautiful valley over 20,000 years ago. Surrounded by mountains, the fjord acts as a natural border between County Mayo and County Galway. The beauty of these calm waters and the stunning landscape that surrounds them is unmatched. The fjord sits near one of the many fishing villages on the northern coast of Ireland.
The Dark Hedges
Located in County Antrim on Bregagh Road between Armoy and Stranocum, there is a road that is covered in intertwined beech trees. The trees meet above the road and form a sort of tunnel above the road out of the branches. The tree tunnel has been used in HBO’s Game of Thrones as a location, and it has become increasingly more popular since its appearance on the show.
Malin Head is located on the peninsula of Malin in Ireland, and for many mariners, it was the first or last sight of Europe, depending on the direction. This gorgeous set of cliffs is one of the most extreme part points of Ireland.
The tip of the peninsula now basically forms an island after normal erosion has shaped it.
The island has a weather station, lighthouse, and signal station.
This shipwreck is located on the coast of Kerry. For 100 years, the ship sat in the same spot, just barely jutting out of the sand. In January of 2014, after a storm ravished the coast, the shipwreck dislodged and moved further onto the shore, becoming fully exposed.
The ship was an English schooner built in 1860. While out on a typical voyage bringing flour from Kinvara to Cork, the ship was steered to shore, crashing. Fortunately, no lives were lost, and the ship was abandoned, nearly 100 meters from where it still lies today.
The Giant’s Causeway
Declared a World Heritage Site and a National Nature Preserve in the 1980s, the Giant’s Causeway is named the 4th greatest wonder in the United Kingdom.
The Giant’s Causeway is made up of about 40,000 basalt columns.
These columns are a result of a volcanic fissure eruption. The tops of the columns naturally form steppingstones, making it easy to navigate about them. Located in Country Antrim, it sits on the coast of Northern Ireland.
Skellig Rocks (Skellig Michael)
The Skellig Rocks are located in the Atlantic Ocean, about 7 miles (12 km) off the coast of Kerry.
On the coast of the island, you will find the crags (large rock formations) that tower out of the ocean, some reaching as high as 7,000 ft.
These towering rocks are rugged and full of beauty. So much so that the creator of Star Wars used it as a location when filming “The Force Awakens” and “The Last Jedi.” You will be enthralled by the majesty and size of these formations.
Doe Castle is located on the shoreline of Co Donegal. with architectural parallels to the.
Built in the early 15th century in the style of a Scottish tower house, it is one of the better fortalices in the north-west of Ireland. The castle lays on a small peninsula, surrounded by water on three sides, with a moat in the rock of the landward side.
The Castle was built by the O’Donnell’s in the 1430’s, but in the 1440’s it had come into the hands of the gallowglass MacSweeneys and remained in the family for nearly two hundred years. In the the Plantation of Ulster in the early seventeenth century, it fell into the hands of English settlers.
The castle changed hands repeatedly during the 17th-century struggle for control of Ireland between the English and the Irish. It is known that in 1650, Sir Charles Coote, the Governor of Londonderry, took possession of the castle.
Eventually, the castle was bought by Sir George Vaughan Hart and inhabited by his family until 1843.
In 1935 the castle was declared a national monument and was then acquired by the Office of Public Works. The main Towerhouse of the castle underwent a major restoration in the 1990s.
The Castle grounds are open daily with guided tours around the tower-house available during the Summer months.
The Wild Atlantic Way
This is more than just one photo op. The Wild Atlantic Way is the coastal route that takes you roughly 1,600 miles (2,600 km), stretching from Malin Head in County Donegal, down the coast of Ireland, to Mizen Head in County Cork.
Within these 1,600 miles, there is an attraction for everyone, from castles to caves and churches. You are bound to find some amazing photo opportunities.
• Fanad Head Lighthouse – with breathtaking views on the Atlantic, you will not want to miss this picturesque lighthouse located in Fanad, County Donegal. The lighthouse was proposed after a nasty shipwreck in 1812, and construction was completed by 1817. More than just the lighthouse, you can explore the coast, watch whales, and visit the white sandy beaches.
• Dunguaire Castle – this is a 16th-century tower house (castle) that is located in Galway Bay. It is named after a legendary king of Connacht. It has been restored and is a great place to snap a few photos.
• Aillwee Cave – this is one of the oldest known caves in Ireland. On a guided tour, you can explore the cave and its wonders, like the frozen waterfall and the caverns that lie deep inside.
• St. Nicholas’ Collegiate Church – this is a Medieval church that sits in Galloway. Founded in 1320, it is one of the largest and best-preserved churches in Ireland to date. With its stunning construction and architecture, this is one you will not want to miss.
• Quiet Man Bridge & Cottage– these are more iconic location as they were featured in a 1952 movie titled ‘Quiet Man.” They are simply nice stone built locations in the idyllic countryside. But they are more than that to some and paints a picture of the quintessential Irish countryside.
• Thomas Dillon’s Claddagh Gold – this is the smallest museum in all of Europe. Not only does the museum feature jewelry, master jewelers create and sell their own handmade pieces. The business was established in 1750 and is still open today.
These are just a handful of authentically Irish photos you can take around the country. Many of these wonders lie on the coast, but sometimes the simple beauty of the rolling Irish countryside will capture many. From natural to man-made wonders, Ireland has something for everyone.
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