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The Best Souvenirs to Bring Home from Ireland
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The first time you go to Ireland you will want to bring back everything to help you remember your magical vacation. The Emerald Isle has tons of beautiful souvenirs to use to decorate your home as well as some that you can eat!
Here are some of the Best Souvenirs to bring Home from Ireland :
A traditional Irish Kilt
Kilts are a traditional piece of clothing often associated with Scotland but they are traditional in Ireland as well. If you’re looking for a unique and authentic souvenir, a kilt is a great option. They come in all different colors and styles, so you can find one that suits your personality.
The traditional ones are quite expensive but if you are wearing it for a wedding or even it will be worth it.
A bottle of Hennessy
When my family of 5 went on a 10 day road trip to Ireland, my College aged son was thrilled at the prospect of drinking Hennessy.
Hennessy is Cognac – and Cognac is brandy made in Cognac, France. However, the Hennessy brand was created by Richard Hennessy, an Irishman born to an aristocratic family in 1724.
Each bottle of Hennessy have letters that come after it, such as V.S., X.O., V.S.O.P., etc. These letters are useful ways to determine it’s impact on your palate and your wallet. The gist of the letters relates to aging — “Very Old,” “Very Special,” “Extra Old,” and so forth, with the cost of Hennessy increasing accordingly.
Hennessy controls half of the world’s Cognac production. A drink of “regular” Hennessy at a bar in North America, or a bottle purchased at a liquor store are still both very expensive. They are described as “an affordable luxury”. However, the bottles of the extra special Hennessy could cost hundreds if not thousands of dollars a bottle.
In Ireland, Hennessy is actually affordable. At bars in Kilkenny, Dublin and Galway, we found that the cost of a single or double of Hennessy was the same price as a regular high ball. Bottles are less than half the cost of what you find in North America. Needless to say, we came home with a bottle or two and now, the empty bottles sit proudly on my son’s dorm room wall.
By Nicole at Go Far Grow Close
The fixings for a Full Irish Breakfast
Full Irish Breakfast is found everywhere in Ireland and locals swear by it on the weekend. It is delicious, comforting and known as a good hangover cure! Though, the taste of this breakfast is quite impossible to reproduce anywhere else in the world because of the specific Irish ingredients used.
While you can easily find mushrooms, potatoes and eggs in your own country, the specific taste of the sausages, bacon and pudding used to prepare the meal, can only be found in Ireland. These 3 ingredients make the Irish breakfast so unique and they can hardly be substituted.
This is why bringing these products to your loved ones from your trip to Ireland can make a great impact. This is a unique idea and a very delicious one!
You can find Black & White pudding, Irish rashers and sausages in every shop in Ireland such as Centra and Dunnes. However, if you are flying with only cabin luggage, you may not be able to go through security with raw meat. Don’t worry! Ireland has you covered. At the Dublin airport, in the duty-free area, you will find a couple of shops where you can buy the products. It might be a little bit more expensive than usual, but it is really worth it!
by Jenny at Tales from the Lens
Merchandising from the Guinness Brewery in Dublin
Ireland is a particularly popular travel destination in Europe. The green island is especially suitable for round trips by car. From rugged coastline to endless green meadows and old castles to legendary villages and the celebrated pub culture.
The typical “Irish pubs” can now be found all over the world. Besides Irish whiskey, one drink is served in each of these pubs: Guinness Beer!
A tour of the Guinness brewery is therefore without question one of the most popular activities in Dublin. The tour thought the famous brewery in St. James Gate is a great experience telling the story of Ireland’s known beer, including tastings and a lot of funny stories.
A particularly good souvenir from Ireland is a souvenir from the brewery’s huge store. Whether Guinness caps, magnets, clothing, funny old posters, drinks and much more.
My personal favorite: an original Guinness glass. The typical shape lets everyone recognize what it is even at home.
And when you pour a bottle of well-chilled Guinness from the fridge, you immediately feel transported back to the Irish pubs – well, at least a little bit.
By Phil from Journication Travel Blog
Get a Piece of Waterford Crystal
One of the most famous brands associated with Ireland (except from Guinness of course!) is Waterford Crystal and a piece of this iconic brand makes a fantastic souvenir from Ireland.
Waterford Crystal pieces are widely in shops throughout Ireland but visitors can also buy it from its source at the House of Waterford Crystal in Waterford city centre. There has been a factory producing glass in Waterford since 1783 and today, visitors can take a self-guided tour to discover how the crystal pieces are created and visit the factory shop.
There is an enormous range of products to choose from (which continue to be made using traditional methods) including glasses, tumblers, vases, frames and ornaments such as bells and even walking sticks. Crystal cut designs are inspired by the Irish landscape and people and include the popular Lismore, Wild Atlantic Way, Colleen and Irish Lace.
We chose Waterford Crystal Lismore wine glasses and tumblers but souvenirs do not have to be practical or bulky. My favourite item of Waterford Crystal is my Christmas tree ornament which is cut into the shape of a traditional Irish Claddagh ring. Each time I hang it on our Christmas tree it reminds me of special memories from our family trips to Ireland.
Sinead from Map Made Memories
When travellers visit Ireland, they tend to bring home some of the most clichéd souvenirs you can think of four-leaf clovers, leprechaun hats, or a simple Irish flag. There’s no authenticity to these mementos. Due to myself being Irish, I’ve seen it all.
What if I told you there was something a little more delicious you could bring back to your mother? What is it?
In the year 1933, the first Cadbury factory opened up in Dublin, and it has fast become the most popular bar of chocolate in Ireland.
Creamy, lucious, and oh so delicious. Just some of the many reasons why it should be brought home for a late night by the fire.
Cadbury can be bought in every shop in Ireland, and I mean every single one. It comes in all forms. Whether you’re looking for a giant bar for an Irish road trip, a pack of six after a long day, or a pot of hot cocoa when you want to sit by the fire, once there’s a bit of chocolate involved, you can guarantee Cadbury will have tried it out for their customers to enjoy.
To get the most out of your sweet souvenir, pour yourself a warm mug of Barry’s Irish tea and devour your tasty treat. You won’t be disappointed.
By Adam from As Adam Goes
There’s but a few iconic drinks that spring to mind when you think of Ireland: Guinness stout and Jameson Irish Whiskey. The latter spirit was first distilled in 1780 by John Jameson and over 200 years later, Jameson is as popular as ever and the world’s third largest single-distillery whiskey.
You can visit their distilleries in either Dublin and Cork and watch the distilling process with your own eyes. The whiskey is made from blending the finest grain whiskey with rich pot still whiskey made from both locally-grown malted and unmalted barley, which is then distilled three times for smoothness.
While you can simply go on a tour of the distillery, you can alternatively take a cocktail-making class here, where you’ll learn how to make three different drinks with the whiskey, or even a whiskey-blending course, where you’ll leave with your very own concoction.
So whether you want to leave with a regular ol’ bottle of Jameson, a variation that’s unique to its storefront, or your very own one-of-a-kind blend, this is a perfect souvenir to take home and enjoy for months or years to come.
by Jessica from Uprooted Traveler
Nicholas Mosse Pottery
My interest in the rustic handmade and hand-painted Nicholas Mosse pottery began with reading a small blurb about it in a magazine. I put it in my “Ireland file” and pulled it out when I finally made my trip to that glorious country.
What attracted me most was the charming renditions of animals that appear on many of the pieces. Some also sport flowers and fruits. My favorites are the chickens and the lambs.
When I was traveling through Ireland, I kept my eyes peeled in gift shops. I saw an especially good selection in The Gift Box on Main Street in Adare. But I finally found and purchased my sweet little pitcher decked out with a baby lamb at–of all places–the Dublin airport! I use it almost every day to pour milk in my tea.
And I dream of returning to Ireland so that I can include a visit to the Nicholas Mosse factory and shop in Bennettsbridge, reputedly a pretty little town just south of Kilkenny City. Situated in an old stone mill, the shop has an entire room dedicated to the history of the mill, the area, and the pottery, plus viewing windows to watch the potters at work.
My heart practically jumps into my throat when I think about the seconds section and their famous special discount table. All this, and tea and scones available in a cafe overlooking the River Nore!
Carole Terwilliger Meyers of Travels with Carole blog
When you think of tea, you may be forgiven for conjuring up imagery of China or England, two countries that have become synonymous with the art of brewing the perfect cup!
Whilst this is partly true, Ireland too can be added to the list of tea-drinking nations and Irish tea should be at the top of your list of the best souvenirs from Ireland.
Having first been introduced in Ireland in the 18th century, tea has become a staple with most drinking it the “Irish” way with milk and sugar. Traditionally the bold, black breakfast tea variation has become a firm favourite.
Today it’s almost not uncommon to find a range of blends available too, these are usually blended with Sri Lankan or Indian Assam teas. Other variations include preparing the tea with Irish Cream liquor or even with a shot of Irish Whiskey.
Tea, of course, makes for a great souvenir as they are compact and easy to pack into your suitcase. And what better way to remember your visit to the Emerald Isle, than to sip on your favourite blend of Irish tea. Popular brands include Barry’s, Bewley’s, Lyon’s, and Robert Roberts.
By Marco from The Avid Campers
You can’t think of Ireland without the image of a big woolly fishermen’s sweater coming to mind. The creamy patterned perfections are called Aran sweaters and are a quintessential take-home from the lush isle of Ireland.
Aran sweaters originate from the Aran Islands in the barren region of Connemara, off the west coast. The wool of Aran sheep has been used for centuries to provide warmth for fishermen. Perfect for the harsh conditions of the Atlantic Ocean, unscoured wool retains its natural lanolin making it water-resistant.
Although Aran sweaters are rougher in texture than say Merino wool, they offer an unparalleled warmth. Each fishermen’s sweater comes with a different knitting pattern, closely guarded by Aran Island’s traditional families. It is said that each pattern has significance and holds symbolism. The diamond shape is used to wish the fisherman health and success, for example.
If you don’t have room in your Irish itinerary to visit the Aran Islands themselves, you can pick yourself up a sweater from O’Maille’s in the town of Galway.
If you are from a cooler country, the Aran sweater can be used for absolutely any event or situation where you might get a chill. Think winter walks, a day out on the sailboat, or just around the house. An Aran sweater is a useful souvenir and is a great reminder of your trip to the emerald isle.
By Haley of Haley Blackall Travel
Woolen Scarf from an Irish woolen mills
It’s no surprise considering the sheep-dotted Irish landscape that you’ll find woolen wares in nearly every Irish gift shop. Ireland is known for its high quality woolen mills like Blarney, John Hanly, and Foxford. In every gift shop I visited during my college semester in western Ireland, I found myself drawn to the displays of chunky cable knit sweaters, bright plaid throw blankets, flat caps, and woven scarves.
I finally settled on a red plaid scarf from Foxford Woolen Mills. It’s not an exaggeration to say I’ve used this scarf all winter for 15 years. Best of all, looks as good as the day I got it!
If you’re looking for a functional, affordable, and easy to find souvenir from Ireland, you won’t do much better than a woven wool scarf. Made in Ireland, these scarves cost less than 30 euros. Lightweight and easy to pack, they don’t take up much room in your suitcase. Even better, you can use it to wrap up and protect more fragile souvenirs, like that bottle of whiskey! You can find these scarves in pretty much any Irish gift shop connected with a tourist attractions or simply check out a woolen mill or airport shops.
By Ada of beyondyellowbrickblog.com
Ireland has some of the tastiest cheese, and is well known for its sharp cheddar. It is on par with some of the best cheese from Vermont and is a delicious reminder of a great trip.
You can find Irish cheddar almost everywhere, but stop into a local cheese shop to get the best of the best. Murray Irish Cheddar is one of the best and it can be found at most fine cheese shops.
*Check with customs in your country before you bring any fresh cheeses in.
Irish Brown Bread
Irish Brown Bread is having a culinary moment. It was thought to be the bread of peasants for most of Ireland’s history. But nostalgic creations like brown bread ice cream and Irish brown bread cheesecake is helping this humble loaf rise from the ashes.
The ingredients for Irish Brown Bread are simple: wholemeal flour, buttermilk, salt, and baking soda. But it is so much more than the sum of its parts. The end result is a dense, slightly sweet loaf that pairs perfectly with any cheese or preserves.
You can find Irish brown bread all over the country, but my favorite place to get it is from the Ballymaloe House in Cork. They have been serving up traditional Irish cuisine since 1964 and their brown bread is some of the best I’ve ever had.
( I also have a recipe for Irish brown bread. It is the closest I have come to authentic Irish bread.)
The Claddagh ring is a beautiful Irish ring, typically made from sterling silver. The ring is worn by almost every Irish woman at some point in her life. The Claddagh ring depicts love, loyalty, and friendship (the hands are for friendship, the heart for love, and the crown for loyalty).
The Claddagh ring actually originated in the small coastal village of Claddagh, which is located in County Galway. It is believed to have first been produced there way back in the 17th Century.
As mentioned, it’s a beloved piece of jewellery by Irish women and sometimes men and many wear it daily. In fact, did you know that if an Irish woman is single she will wear the ring with crown facing out away from her and if she’s taken she will wear it upside down so the crown and the heart is facing in towards her.
There are many different types of Claddagh rings, the traditional is the plain sterling silver ring but you can also get it in gold, or with a precious stone like an emerald or sapphire set in the middle of the heart on the ring.
A claddagh ring is surprisingly reasonable, starting from €25 ($28 USD)
Some of the best places to buy the Claddagh ring in Ireland is in Blarney Woollen Mills, which is one of the best places to visit in County Cork and Claddagh Jewellers in Galway City.
by Aimee of Snap Happy Travel
No matter what you take home from Ireland you are sure to find a souvenir to bring home from Ireland, that makes you remember your spectacular week in Ireland!
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