Don’t we all want to find magic in the world? To me, Ireland is that little bit of magic in the every day. The hills that glow green in the sunlight, and the rain that brings a little dramatic grayness to an ancient landscape that is stunningly beautiful and raw; the old stone walls lining the tiny, winding country roads and splitting the rolling hills into a patchwork of varied shades of green. The old bookshops that hold stacks of knowledge and the stories that have been passed down through families since the beginning of time. The old churches where countless generations have come together to find community in their faith, and where today the arts are celebrated; poetry readings and harp recitals echoing through perfect acoustics and bouncing off stained glass windows which tell a story that has always provided hope. The warm friendliness of locals who invite new friends in for a bit of tea and cake by the peat fire, the smell of which will forever be in a traveler’s soul and call them back again and again.
Brightly colored storefronts bring a happy contrast to the gray skies. Families come together for a meal and cherish the memories of what was, telling stories and singing songs to remind each other of where they came from and the importance of tradition. White-washed cottages proudly display their boldly painted doors under a cap of thatch, the old style still valued in modern times, making it hard to know what year it is. Pubs that invite young and old to come together for a meal, a pint and an old-fashioned tune, where music that moves the soul hangs on the air long into the night and all who hear it are united in friendship and a happiness that bubbles up when true beauty is near. Perfect pints of glorious stout line the bar, themselves a work of art in every glass; brown bubbles tumbling and churning to settle into a beautiful blackness that tastes like creamy perfection.
Ancient castles dot the landscape, where powerful families and those who served them lived out their lives in grand halls with tapestries and dark winding staircases. A tradition of literature and art at the center of a culture that appreciates beauty and passion, and that has been worth fighting for through centuries of Troubles; a culture so treasured that many have laid down their lives to protect. The hiking trails winding through ancient trees and stone archways where kings have passed through on horseback, mysterious stairways down into rocky caves that could very well lead to the land of the fairies. Sheep with red and blue paint blotches to keep them straight, and happy cows that seem to know they are lucky to live in such a place, graze the wild landscape and represent a simple lifestyle that focuses on what’s important.
There’s magic in every corner of this beautiful country. Ireland is in my soul and it calls me back again and again. There is so much more to see and share with those I love. I’ll spend my life returning “home” whenever I need an infusion of magic.
Do you long to find the magic that imbues the Emerald Island with mystery and beauty? Some people discover it in the many historic Ireland castles that dot the beautiful landscape, while others will only discover it in the serenity and solitude of the countryside while staying in cozy Ireland cottages. Our travel experts are dedicated to helping you create the perfect trip to discover the magic of Ireland,