A Guide to Visiting Ireland in June

June is an amazing time to come to Ireland. The weather can be pretty good and there is also a load of the things you get up to like:

● Vantastival

● Trad on the Prom

● Visiting Westport in County Mayo

● Visiting Belfast

Take Part in Vantastival in County Louth

Usually around the June bank holiday weekend at the very start of the month Vantastivaltakes place. This is a music festival that tries to cater to a campervan experience, where attendees can camp out at the site with their vans.

The festival is very much family focused, so if you’re travelling around the country in a campervan with your loved ones then this could be an amazing pit stop to make. The van site at the festivals doesn’t charge anything and there is also a dedicated tent site, so if you’re without a van you can stay there.

There are many musical guests at the festival each year, with previous performances from Le Galaxie and The Stunning. The festival doesn’t just focus on music. There is also gourmet food stalls present and kid’s activities.

The event takes place in Beaulieu House just outside Drogheda in County Louth. This is an easy location to get to from both Belfast and Dublin. Drogheda has motorway the whole way to Dublin and to Belfast, and is well connected by train.

The town of Drogheda itself is a pleasant place to visit. It is rich in history with its origins being almost a thousand years. The town was mostly under English control (like Dublin) for most of the last millennium. It was part of the Pale, the English controlled part of east Ireland. In 1297 the Parliament of Ireland was founded and was often in Drogheda until the end of the 15th century. To see the town’s Norman and colonial pass the Millmont Fort is a great place to visit. It was a fortified structure in medieval Droghada. It now accommodates the Milltown Museum, which everyone should visit in the town.

If you have some kids or enjoy the water then Funtasia in Drogheda is a perfect place to check out. It is a leisure complex that includes a waterpark. It also has bowling and a video game arcade. There really is loads you can do if you feel like staying on in Drogheda after the festival.

See ‘Trad on the Prom’ in Galway City

From the start of May to the start of October every year the Trad at the Prom show takes place in Salthill, Galway city. The show is performed every Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday and happens in the Leisureland theatre.

If you are around the west of Ireland in June or want to pay it a visit, then this performance is worth dropping by to. It showcases amazing some amazing Irish dancers that will dazzle you. There are also several great musical guests with Colm Henry and Chris Kelly having played at the show.

The Trad on the Prom is easy to get to if you are in Galway city. Galway is known as an easy city to navigate, with getting around by foot a doable way of seeing most of the city. The show takes place in Salthill which is only about a twenty to twenty-five minute walk from the city centre. So even if you’re staying in a hotel on Eyre square in the city centre you could easily walk to and from the show. Alternatively, a taxi would get you there in no time.

The show has some great production values and really does leave an impression on attendees who marvel at the performances.

Visit Westport in County Mayo

Westport in County Mayo is one of Western Ireland’s prime tourist destinations. Many Irish and those from abroad come to the quaint town to enjoy its bars, restaurants and scenic location. June is a great time to come to the town as there is a range of festivals that take place there.

The Westport Folk and Bluegrass Festivalusually takes place in June and runs the course of about three days. As the title suggests it hosts some jaw droppingly good folk and bluegrass music. It includes an array of fun and lively gigs, and not to mention masterclasses and workshops.

There are gigs in a variety of venues across the town including at a local church, which makes for a memorable setting. There are also usually a few gigs at Cobbler’s Bar. This bar not only has some amazing food it also it known as one of the best pubs in town for live traditional music.

Another festival that takes place in Westport in June includes the Westport Food Festival. The festival usually takes place over a June weekend and has delicious food related events. Victors can expect a banquet at Westport House. This black-tie event takes place in the exquisite building that is rich in history. The food served usually is some of the county’s finest and is therefore hard to resist.

Other events at the festival include a food village in the town’s fairgreen. Here several food producers and artisans set up stalls and sell their fresh produce.

As stated, Westport can be a busy spot. If you really want to enjoy a few pints and the nightlife, then any weekend in June would be a great time to come. There will be a party atmosphere in many of the pubs throughout the town. The town is a popular spot for young people to head out in from around the county. It always draws in many bachelor and bachelorette parties that come from across the country.

If exercise is more your thing, then you are also served well in Westport. Right outside the town is Croagh Patrick. It is a mountain that is over 750 meters in height and an extremely popular hiking destination. The reason for this is that it has a long pilgrimage history. A huge pilgrimage happens every year at the last day of July in honour of Saint Patrick, who is said to have fasted at the summit for weeks centuries ago. There is a church at the summit where catholic mass is often held. Once you reach the summit you’ll be greeted by astounding views of Ireland’s countryside and coastline.

Visit Belfast

Belfast in June is an amazing time to visit this dynamic city. As a city with so much history and culture it really is a great place to visit throughout the year. However, June can be a great time to go for many reasons.

First off, being in Northern Ireland the weather can be a little cooler than most of the rest of Ireland in winter months. However, in June you can really get some nice days of sun that make exploring the city that much more enjoyable.  

Usually around the June Bank holiday weekend the AVA Festival takes place in Belfast. As the title suggests it is an Audio-Visual Arts festival. It celebrates electronic music by hosting a range of DJs that put-on shows. Along with being a music festival it showcases a huge amount of digital artistry. Many of the artists present at the festival are established.

A conference also takes place at the festival. If you are interested in the music or creative arts or are interested in picking it up as a hobby or pursuing it as a passion, then this is a must. The conference itself is free and open to all ages. It hosts discussions, lectures and workshops on all things electronic music and arts sector. Even if you don’t see yourself becoming a successful DJ like Diplo or Skrillex this still could be an insightful event to attend to learn more about that world.

Belfast City has a few nicknames. One of them is the ‘Old Smoke’. This has its origins back to Victorian times where Belfast was the most industrial part of the island of Ireland. The rest of Ireland was mainly rural with the administrative capital being in Dublin. The industrious nature of Belfast continued well into the 20th century where it became a centre for large scale shipbuilding. Probably the most famous of all ships ever constructed was built in Belfast harbour. This was the Titanic, the beautiful vessel that unfortunately hit an iceberg on route to America from Europe.

The ship was built by Harland and Wolf in Belfast. The old Harland and Wolf shipyard in Belfast has now been regenerated into the Titanic Quarter. The quarter contains both residential and educational buildings and also a visitor centre dedicated to all things Titanic. The centre is known as Titanic Belfast and it includes a range of exhibitions and cool features.

You can take part in the Titanic Experience at the centre. This includes nine interactive galleries. The galleries have some jaw dropping special effects and reconstructions.

The centre also has the worlds last White Star vessel.  The Titanic was operated and owned by White Star Line, a British shipping company. At one stage in history its ships were an extremely popular form of transport for people and cargo between Great Britain and the United States. The vessel that Titanic Belfast is in possession of is known as the SS Nomadic. The SS Nomadic is over 100 years old being built in 1911. The ship itself has been fully restored, so once you board you really do experience something like the what the Titantic passengers saw and felt when they first stood foot on that ill-fated ship.  

The ship itself was Titanic’s first tender boat. This meant that it transported passengers to and from the Titanic and other White Line ocean liners back around 1912.

Another interesting way to learn about history related to Belfast is by going on the famous Back Cab Tours. With these tours you sit at the back of a taxicab that is driven by a professional tour guide. They then drive you around the city of Belfast or even to places further afield. One of the most popular tours provided by the company is a tour of political murals and peace lines.

Belfast city is dotted with political and religious focused murals. They can be seen in both the nationalist and unionist communities, with some even displaying members of paramilitary organisations such as the I.R.A. and U.D.A.

One of many Murals in Belfast

These murals are unique to Northern Ireland, so if you want to learn more about them and the stories behind some of the most striking examples then the black cab tour is defiantly the way to go.

The tour also focuses on sharing the history of peace lines. These walls and barriers (oftentimes covered in murals themselves) separate some prominent republican and loyalist areas. Some of the first peace lines date back to the late 1960’s and were erected after escalating violence between the two communities in the North. Originally, they weren’t planned to be permanent, however many did become just that. Some even began to sprawl in length where now they can be miles long.

The cab tour service can also bring you to the Titanic quarter of the city. As mentioned, this area is home to Titanic Belfast attraction site. If you do want to learn even more about the ship, the Belfast black cabs will show you where the ship was built in the Harland and Wold shipyard and where it was docked.

The tours also can also bring you to Crumlin Road jail and courthouse. These buildings are infamous in Northern Ireland due to their relevance with the Troubles and sectarian violence. Many people involved in the conflict between the unionist and nationalist communities were convicted and jailed at these buildings.  These days the buildings are popular sites that draw in many tourists. There are amazing locations to understand more about the atrocities that were carried out in Belfast since the Troubles began.

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