Top 10 Travel Myths about Ireland

Myth 1 — You don’t need ID to enter Ireland.

Ireland and the UK are both members of the EU Common Travel Area. This means that you only need one form of photographic ID to enter the country. You will be asked to present a passport or a driving license before boarding your flight. Once you arrive in Dublin you can avoid immigration and head straight to your first pint of Guinness. Obviously if you are not a citizen of the EU then the rules are more complicated and we recommend contacting your local Irish embassy.

Myth 2 — People don’t drink lager in Ireland.

Dublin boasts a rich array of pubs and clubs. It also brews many famous lagers including Harp, and ciders including Bulmer’s. Whilst it is possible to have Dublin holiday without a pint of the ‘good stuff’, we do recommend a visit to the St James’s Gate Brewery where you will be able to see Ireland’s most famous drink in the production stage. It is no myth that Guinness tastes better in Ireland than it does in any other country in the world.

Myth 3 — All Dubliners are friendly and party every day.

Ireland deserves its reputation as one of the friendliest countries in the world. However, Dublin is much more than just a tourist city or a destination for a stag do. As Ireland’s capital – and one that is still recovering from the effects of the 2008 economic crash – Dublin is under a lot of pressure to drag Ireland forward again economically. Therefore, Dublin is not only a party town, and not everyone will be appreciative of a drunken English man or woman. We recommend caution on certain subjects and moderation in behaviour and this will stand you in good stead to make friends and enjoy your time.

Myth 4 — Everywhere in Dublin is expensive.

Dublin is an expensive city, however with good research you can cut down on costs. There are plenty of budget hotels and low-cost B&Bs offering cheap and cheerful hospitality. By staying just outside the centre of the city you are likely to be able to keep costs down. There are also plenty of cheap restaurants in Dublin.

One thing that certainly is expensive in Dublin, though, is drinking in pubs. You can expect to pay around 5 Euros for your pint. We recommend a trip down the coast for a stroll in Bray, as a cheaper alternative to a night in the pub. Dublin’s transport system is excellent and you will be able to travel on the DART to Howth to the North, or along the coast to Dún Laoghaire, Bray and Greystones to the South.

Planning is the key to ensuring that you won’t be worrying about money throughout your trip. You can also avoid eating some of the tourist traps, like Temple Bar, and stick to the more traditional pubs and restaurants.

Myth 5 — Dublin is not as beautiful as the rest of Ireland.

Of course Dublin has a big population and a lot of urbanisation. However, wherever you are in Dublin you can always see a spot of green on the horizon. Dublin is surrounded and hemmed in by mountains and the sea. A very short ride on the DART will take you to some beautiful coastlines, and the Wicklow Mountains are only a day-trip away. Dublin also boasts some beautiful architecture, and the tendency in Dublin has always been to build well rather than high.

Myth 6 — There is significantly less crime in Ireland than in the UK.

Ireland and Britain have roughly equivalent crime statistics. Like any large city, Dublin does have certain areas that are best avoided by tourists. Its tourist areas also attract a number of opportunistic criminals. However, by being vigilant and not taking any unnecessary risks, your holiday is likely to be very safe. You should take the same precautions in Dublin as you would in any city you travel to in the UK.

Myth 7 — Everyone speaks Irish.

In fact, it is very rare to meet someone in Dublin who is actually fluent in Irish (Gaelic). Whilst Gaelic is taught in Irish primary schools, it is estimated that only 2% to 3% of the population in Ireland use Gaelic as their first language. If you would like to hear Gaelic being spoken on your visit to Dublin, then we suggest a trip to Wicklow, as some towns in this area still use Gaelic as their first language today.

Myth 8 — Ireland is fervently religious.

The Republic Of Ireland is a Catholic country and most of its people do have a Catholic background. However, church attendance is falling sharply and many Irish go to church as a matter of duty rather than faith. With each generation, Ireland’s churches become emptier. Despite the increasing lack of relevance that the Catholic Church has in many Irish families’ lives, for the tourist Dublin’s churches are still must-see attractions. St Patrick’s Cathedral (which is part of the Church of Ireland), and Christ Church Cathedral are two absolute must-sees in Dublin.

Myth 9 — Irish Cuisine consists of only potatoes, cabbage and bacon.

Ireland actually possesses a rich array of restaurants which serve food from across the globe. We recommend you fuel your tour of Dublin with some of Ireland’s excellent breads (in moderation), soups and stews.

Myth 10 — Once you get to Ireland, you won’t want to go back home.

This one is actually not a myth! Dublin, Ireland and the Irish will always hold a dear place in your heart after your first visit to Dublin. The good thing is that as soon as you return to the UK, you can start planning the next one.