Which things come to your mind when you think of Ireland? Think about it, and compare it with the actual things that Ireland is famous for… Let´s see how many of them you have in common.
The Island where Ireland is located is divided in two different territories (And countries), on the upper part you will see Northern Ireland, which is part of the United Kingdom, and on the south, you will see the Republic of Ireland, which is the country itself and the one will be talking about today. Although it´s not a huge country, there are many iconic things that represent it all over the world…Here is our list of things Ireland is known for:
1) St. Patrick´s Day
Of course, there is only one way to start talking about “What is Ireland famous for?”, and that´s it´s mentioning their popular festivity St. Patrick´s Day. Without any doubt, St. Patrick´s Day is the most popular thing of Ireland, as it´s widely known all over the world, and it´s even celebrated in the majority of the countries.
It´s the national holiday of the country and it occurs the 17th of March. The festivity is done in honor to the patron of the country which is St. Patrick. He is the one who brought Christianity to the country, plus, it is said that he was also the one who chased away the snakes of Ireland.
The celebration consists of a huge parade where everyone dresses with green colors and almost everything you see on the streets looks green. The biggest event happens in the capital Dublin, but there are parades in cities of all over the world like New York, Sidney or London.
Another of the things associated with Ireland are the shamrocks, everyone agrees that it´s a symbol of the country. To make it clear, a shamrock is basically a three-leaf clover.
Shamrocks are so important in Ireland because it is said that St. Patrick used them to spread the Christianity word through all over the country. Thanks to the three leaves he was able to explain the Holy Trinity of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
People also associate shamrocks with the four-leaf clover as they both give good luck, but they are a completely different thing. It is said that only one out of 5,000 clovers come with 4 leaves, and if you find it you will have good luck.
It´s not possible to talk about “What is Ireland most famous for?” and not mention their most popular brand, Guinness. This recognized black beer is not only known in Ireland, but all over the world, and just so you have an idea of its popularity, around 10 million glasses of Guinness are sold every day.
The reason why Guinness is so famous is because it´s not a normal drink, is a thick, black beer with foam on the top that has a very different taste than what you normally order.
In Dublin, you will find the Guinness Storehouse, which other than being the most visited tourist attraction in the country, is also the place where you can learn all about the popular beer, have a tase of it and see how it´s produced.
4) Ireland is famous for its filming locations
You probably have heard about how green Ireland is right? or maybe about it´s castles? Well that´s because these are amazing over there and movie directors know it.
Apparently, Ireland is the perfect country to film a movie, of course their epic landscapes are important, but they also have a very good financial situation that helps the production companies make the decision.
Many famous movies and tv series as Braveheart or Saving Private Ryan have been filmed here, but the one that we have to remark is Game of Thrones. The most popular tv serie of the history use Northern Ireland as the main area to film. Oh, we almost forgot, one of the biggest reasons why Ireland is great (especially if you are a fan of Star Wars), is because Star Wars VII and VIII were recorded over there.
5) The origin of Halloween
We talked about St. Patrick’s before as it´s the celebration that everyone recognizes as Irish, but the truth is that there is a much more famous event that was originated in Ireland and is Halloween.
That´s right, although many people think of United States or the UK when thinking of Halloween, the inventors were the locals from Ireland. It happened because the Celtics thought that spirits come back to earth on the day of all saints on the 31st of October.
Irish people were the ones who brought this celebration to the United States and the rest of America and since then it became more popular. On their arrival to the US, they saw the abundance of pumpkins and that´s why it started to be an iconic symbol of Halloween.
6) Irish pubs
Another of the famous things in Ireland that has become popular all over the world are their pubs. For example, in our country, Spain, you can see one Irish pub in almost every street of the big cities. They have a huge success, but we can tell you one thing, if you want to have a real “Irish pub experience” then you need to visit Ireland because the rest are all imitations.
One of the things Irish are known for is their traditional céilí dancing, so if you get to a pub where they are dancing it, then you can consider yourself a lucky person, because that´s the most Irish experience you could ever live.
Other than that, in an Irish pub you will find music, strangers talking to each other, dances…and of course, a lot of beer!
7) Rugby and Gaelic football
As it happens in the UK, Ireland is popular for their fanatism with sports, but in this case, the sports Irish people follow are very different to the rest of the world. It´s something very unique, but they don´t play much soccer, basketball or tennis.
Actually, they do play something “similar” to soccer. When we visited Ireland for the first time (around 10 years ago), we got surprised because they put us all together on a field and gave us a normal ball but not to play soccer, we were going to play “Gaelic football” which is a sport where they use the foot and the hands. At the beginning it was weird, but we had fun.
And of course, if we are talking about sports that are played in Ireland, we need to mention the rugby. It is one of the best national rugby teams in the world and they have won the six nations Championship 14 times.
You must agree with us here, leprechauns are by far one of the most popular things in Ireland! When we think of Ireland, one of those little mythical creatures comes to our mind and we have always though they were just myths, but Irish people do believe they exist, and they have also claimed to see them in more than one occasion.
There are many legends about leprechauns, but all of them agree that they give you good luck and if you see one you must catch him, because then he will give you the reward of asking for three wishes.
As you can imagine, seeing a leprechaun is not an easy task (if it´s possible), but if you have the goal of seeing one on your trip to Ireland, always remember that they have very clean shoes, a green or red jacket, and an orange beard. Oh, and they are supposed to appear whenever there is a rainbow, so be aware of that too.
Although we may be the only few people on earth that have not seen the titanic, we did get the chance of visiting the place where it began its last journey…and yes, it was in Ireland!
Not many people mention the Titanic on their “What is Ireland most famous for?” list, but without any doubt is an historical fact and we needed to include it.
There are actually two places that have a strong connection with the Titanic. The first one is Belfast, as the ship was built in Harland and Wolff shipyards. The second one, which is the one we visited is Cobh and it´s where the Titanic disembarked. It´s just 30 minutes far from the center of Cork, so we really recommend you visiting it.
Yes, we are sorry, we know puffins are not one of the most common things in Ireland, but as we love wild animals and it´s what we like the most when travelling, we had to include one here as well.
Puffins are a very unique bird, that is known for many people as the most “adorable” bird in Europe! If you see the picture, they look like a mixture between penguins and toucans…maybe that´s why they are so cool.
Ireland is one of the easiest countries to spot puffins and being more concrete we recommend you going to Ireland’s rugged west coast as it´s where there are more chances of seeing them.
Hope you enjoyed reading about the famous things in Ireland
That´s it! That´s the end of our list of things related to Ireland, as you have seen Ireland has many iconic symbols that are known internationally and it´s for sure a fantastic country to visit!
Hope this article was useful, and if you have any other question or suggestion, please let us know!