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25 Curiosities of Ireland

Ireland is one of the most beautiful countries to see in Europe and is full of legends, stories and curious facts. In addition, Ireland has a great culture, which has reached almost every corner of the planet. If you are thinking of traveling to Ireland, here I explain 25 curiosities of Ireland that will surprise you.


1. Ireland is an island divided into two political areas

Whenever we talk about Ireland, we mean the island. But in reality, there are two countries on the island; Ireland and Northern Ireland (the latter belongs to the United Kingdom).

And the rest of the island, most of it, belongs to the Republic of Ireland, whose capital is Dublin and is independent from the United Kingdom.

2. The Irish are heavy drinkers, which is not surprising.

Ireland is popularly known for its beer and pubs. One of the best curiosities about Ireland is that the Irish are the sixth largest beer drinkers per capita in the world. Although, the most curious thing is that alcohol is not what people drink the most, but tea. In fact, only the Turks drink more tea per capita than the Irish.

3. There are more Irish people abroad than in Ireland

It is estimated that 80 million people worldwide claim Irish ancestry. I myself have an Irish great-grandmother! Because of the great Irish famine migration (1845-1849) and the search for better opportunities abroad, many were those who left (especially to the American continent and Australia).

4. Big businesses and online businesses love Ireland

This is one of the best known curiosities of Ireland. Due to the low tax rates, many multinational companies establish their offices in Ireland. Among them Google, Apple, Intel, booking or Facebook. Corporate tax is only 12.5%, among other advantages. And freelancers and digital nomads only have to pay an annual fee of less than 50 euros and 5% of their profits.

5. Saint Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland, was not born in Ireland.

The patron saint of Ireland is Saint Patrick. Surely it sounds familiar to you because Saint Patrick's Day (March 17) is celebrated almost in every corner of the planet. However, the figure of Saint Patrick hides some of the best curiosities of Ireland. Saint Patrick was not Irish as many might believe. He was born in Wales.

The Irish consider all people born on March 17 to be very lucky.

According to legend, Saint Patrick was kidnapped by pirates and taken to Ireland, where he was sold into slavery and stayed there for 6 years before hearing a voice saying that he should return home. In Britain he became a clergyman and later returned to Ireland as a missionary.

6. Did Saint Patrick arrive by submarine?

Between the journeys that San Patricio made between Ireland and the United Kingdom, he could have used the submarine. That's a story that's often told as if it were quite a feat, but in reality, it was an Irish invention as it hadn't been invented at the time. The inventor of the submarine was John Philip Holland, who invented it in the year 1897.

7. The Titanic was built in Ireland

The Titanic, the famous cruise ship that sank in the Atlantic after colliding with an iceberg, was built in Ireland. It was built in Belfast, Northern Ireland. In fact, in the capital of Northern Ireland there is a very interesting museum in the capital.

Also, the last stop of the Titanic was in the port of Cobh, a very picturesque fishing village to see near Cork.

8. In Ireland there are hardly any UFO sightings

This is one of the funniest curiosities in Ireland. Ireland has the lowest annual number of reported UFO sightings in Europe.

9. The White House was designed by an Irishman

The house of the President of the United States, located in Washington D.C, was designed by the Irishman James Hoban after winning a competition in 1792.

10. And also the statue of the Oscars!

The small statue that is awarded as an Oscar award was designed by Cedric Gibbons, who apart from designing the renowned award, also won 11 Oscars throughout his life.

11. The harp is the national symbol of Ireland and not the shamrock.

Ireland has well-known symbols such as the shamrock or the Celtic cross. However, the national symbol is a harp, which appears on the front of Irish passports. And you'll also see it on Guinness cans.

12. The Cliffs of Moher are not the highest in Ireland

Although the Cliffs of Moher are popularly considered the most beautiful in Ireland, they are not the highest in the country. The Cliffs of Moher can reach 200 meters in some areas. On the other hand, the Slieve League Cliffs can reach up to 600 meters, being the highest cliffs in Europe.

13. The Irish flag was inspired by another country

The Irish flag was inspired by the French. They are the same, only the colors change. Green, white and gold instead of blue, white and red. The Irish flag has three colors for a reason. The green represents Ireland's Gaelic tradition, the orange is meant to represent those who followed William of Orange, and the white stripe in the middle represents peace between the two.

14. There is a town in Limerick, Ireland called Hospital

Near the city of Limerick there is a town called Hospital. The town is small and very rural, it has a very special charm and if you make a rental car route I recommend you make a stop there. The most curious thing about the town is that it does not have a hospital.

15. Only around 9% of people in Ireland have red hair

There is a belief that the Irish, like the Scots, have red hair. My great-grandma was Irish and had red hair, so when I was little I thought everyone had orange hair. And although it does have a very high percentage of redheads, only 9% of the Irish population is.

16. Ireland is known as the Emerald Isle

It is not difficult to understand why Ireland is called the Emerald Isle. The green color is the most representative of Ireland. Not only because of its symbology or its flag, but because of the intense green landscapes that you will find throughout the country.

17. The Wild Atlantic Way is the longest coastal route in the world

When you visit Ireland, you can't miss the Wild Atlantic Way. This route, which runs along the Atlantic Ocean, will allow you to pass through incredible places such as the Cliffs of Moher. It is 2,500 kilometers long, making it the longest coastal road in the world.

18. The longest place name in Ireland is Muckanaghederdauhaulia

Muckanaghederdauhaulia is a small town in Connemara. It has 22 letters! Pronounce it all at once is practically impossible.

19. Dracula has Irish origins

The Dracula novel was written by Bram Stoker, a Dublin-born author. But it is not only Irish because of its author, but because the novel is also inspired by the Irish legend of Abhartach. A classic from Irish mythology!

20. English is the main language but not the only one

The native Irish language is still spoken and taught in school. It is a Gaelic language that belongs to the Celtic side of the Indo-European language tree, and bears little resemblance to English.

Although English is considered the official language of the country and the one they speak on the street.

21. The Irish have very practical surnames

Irish surnames beginning with "Mac" mean "son of." And Irish surnames beginning with "O" mean "grandson of." For example: Seán Ó Conaill (in English it would be John O'Connell) (literally, Seán grandson of Conall).

22. Ireland has the oldest maternity hospital in the world

The oldest maternity hospital in the world is located in Dublin, the capital of Ireland. It opened in the year 1745 and has been operating for 275 years.

23. Halloween has Irish roots

This celebration derives from a Celtic festival called Samhain. People lit bonfires and wore scary costumes to ward off unwanted spirits. It was a transition party since its etymology is Gaelic and means 'end of summer'.

24. They also have the oldest lighthouse in Europe

The Hook Lighthouse is believed to be the oldest working lighthouse in Europe and possibly even the world. It is located at Hook Head in County Wexford and the current structure was completed in 1172, although the first lighthouse on this site dates back to the 5th century.

25. Ireland and its success in Eurovision

Ireland is the only country that has won Eurovision seven times, three of them consecutively.


I hope you enjoy your trip to Ireland very much and that this article has been useful to you. You can continue reading many more related articles on the blog.

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A hug and see you soon!


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