Irish First Names

While names like Sophie and Jack are popular choices for babies in Ireland these days, there are a wealth of beautiful and interesting Irish names used in Ireland. In your travels, you’re bound to meet some of them. Here is a list a Irish first names: Girls: Aideen Aine Ashling Briana Brigid Ciara Daire Deirdre…

Getting to Slane By Bus

Slane is an planned Irish village, steeped in history, easily accessible, with lovely historic walks, and rural enough to feel like you are really in the Irish countryside, while being only a 30-minute drive from Dublin. It’s a wonderful place to spend a day or two and a great central location if you’re planning on staying…

Bus Tours: some thoughts

It would be great to have a friend in every part of a country so that you could travel around in a car, to the best areas, during low tourist time, stopping at the hidden gems for refreshment, seeing things only locals know about, all while being economical, informative and fun. But for the rest…

Irish Surnames

A large number of Irish surnames are well-known and easily spotted. Anyone with an O’ or Mc is from Ireland, but that is not exactly the case. Did you know that Ireland has a long history of last names that stretches back further than more of the rest of Europe? A lot of these names,…

March: What to Plant & Sow Outdoors

Nothing is certain in March, except that it will be uncertain. There are a myriad of helpful guides for what to plant outdoors during the spring and summer months, but they are just that, guidelines. If the soil is sufficiently warmed, and not too damp, then certain plants can be sown. I wouldn’t put your…

Traveling: Things to Know

After crossing the exhilarating Carrick-a-Rede rope bridge in Northern Ireland and walking back in a downpour—so happy I’d made it over just before they closed it for the weather, there were a few ladies complaining in the bathroom as I dried my clothes under the heater. Their conversation was so strange to me. They were angry at…

Recipe: Colcannon

This wonderful twist on mashed potatoes is a staple in Irish food. Serve it with a salad at lunchtime or as a side to beef or pork for supper. Colcannon 3lbs. potatoes, peeled or unpeeled 1 stick butter (1/2 for potatoes, 1/2 for cabbage) 3/4 C warmed milk, or less 1/4 – 1/2 cup sour…

Traveling By Bus in Ireland

Bus travel, either short or long distances, is very common across Ireland and Northern Ireland. Buses are on the whole, comfortable, clean and relatively quiet. The city buses are sometimes crowded, especially from the airport. If you can avoid peak times, there’s usually a seat. It’s often cheaper than the train, which in Ireland and Northern…

Ireland: A Brief History: Part I: Pre-historic to Pre-Norman Invasion

As far as anyone can tell, the history of the Irish people began some 10,000 years ago. Previous to this point, it’s believed that Ireland was uninhabitable and that the first people to settle braved the Irish Sea in boats from Britain. Fast forward 5,000 years and evidence of a Neolithic people appear on the…