What a way to start of April? I took a magical trip to Ireland! I was invited by Tourism Ireland to attend their “Jump into Ireland” vacation Atlanta experience. The event was held at the beautiful Atlanta History Center. The guests were immediately greeted upon arrival and you felt the warm sense of walking into a relative’s home. The vibe was warm, friendly and very welcoming. My invitation to experience Ireland came at the perfect time because Ireland is actually on my travel bucket list for 2015 so who knows maybe you will see me soon on the grassy plains in a yoga pose.
The guests were provided their credentials and immediately welcomed by the wonderful Irishmen that were taking the photos. I took this opportunity to snag me a few photos showcasing my dedication to “Jumping Into Ireland” and headed down the corridor to join others for cocktail hour. I have traveled the world a lot and I make it a habit to always try the country’s signature drink so when in Ireland what else would I try but a whiskey sour? Although I prefer sweet drinks and an occasional glass of great wine, the whiskey sour has won a special place in my heart and at one point I actually closed my eyes and envisioned myself in a pub in Cork listening to music and taking a shot at dancing too. Why not? It’s all about engulfing yourself in the culture when you’re traveling!
I had the opportunity to visit with and speak with representatives from some of the most renowned hotels, resorts and castles in Ireland. I particularly enjoyed the passion that each had about their hotel, resort or castle and as a travel writer you could envision everything that they were saying because it wasn’t a sales pitch it was a genuine love for their work. If you’re thinking of taking a vacation why not “Jump into Ireland”? Here are some things the resorts have to offer:
Adams & Butler-Hallmark of Luxury Travel offers their clients authentic yet very unique experiences that are tailor-made to each guest and consist of using the finest castle hotels, private stately mansions and country guesthouses, customizing the itineraries to suit the needs of their guest. They will be your “One-Stop Shop” for Ireland, Scotland, Wales and England. Adams & Butler has catered to celebrity clients: Michael Jackson, Taylor Swift, and the Kardashians.
Adare Mannor Hotel & Golf Resort is located in the heartlands of County Limerick which is one of Ireland’s most evocative and spellbinding castle hotels. The exotic historical and medieval ruins and 840 acre demesne make this a beautiful location to vacation. You can enjoy the beautiful parkland, superb trout fishing on the river Maigue and try your hand on their 18-hole championship golf course designed by Robert Trench Jones Senior.
Fota House, Arboretum & Gardens is a fully restored and preserved Regency Irish Country House in the style of Downtown Abbey. It is set amid an internationally renowned Arboretum and gardens on the South Coast of Ireland in close proximity to Cork Harbour and the Wild Atlantic Way.
In addition to the manors, castles and resorts Ireland also offers a host of tours that are by far unlike any that you have ever experienced.
Brendan Vacations is the premier Ireland and Scotland destination expert. They have over 45 years of planning authentic Celtic travel experiences. They also provide hosted and self-drive offering, introduce guest to hand-crafted travel experiences and the local people passionate about sharing their stories and their homelands.
Lynott Tours has been a family owned business for more than 25 years specializing in creating unique and memorable vacation experiences to Ireland. Their boutique style tour affords them the opportunity to create customized tours that are unique to every travelers taste and interest.
Sceptre Tours is a family owned and operates Tour business with over 30 years experience. They specialize in Ireland and Europe, as the leaders in providing high quality vacations with an unmatched level of service their product lines includes a 100% customizable FITS, Enchanting Journeys-small guided vacations and Chauffeur Driven Vacations.
We were greeted by Billy Cordon, the Vice President of Marketing, Tourism Ireland. It was a delight for him to greet us as we all anxiously awaited to learn more about Ireland. Mr. Cordon educated us on successful launches of 2014 and how they were celebrating the “Irish Design this year for 2015 which is a year-long series of events dedicated and commemorating the life and works of poet W.B. Yeats. He also told us of the excitement that they are looking forward to for the Irish Open golf tournament where we will see some of the worlds best golfers take part and join Rory McIlroy at Royal County Down. We all felt as though we were actually in Ireland. I loved the manner in which the information was presented and how they tied social media tweets into each informational session.
We were treated to a spectacular evening of Irish music and theatre, authentic Irish Cuisine and spirits as we networked with each other and learned golden nuggets about Ireland that many of us didn’t know. The evening was amazing! I met some of the most wonderful people and learned a wealth of knowledge about Ireland. Here are a few exciting things many don’t know about Ireland:
- The Titanic was built-in Ireland
- The Oldest Whiskey Distillery in the world is located in Ireland
- The Game of Thrones is filmed in Ireland
- Ireland’s most famous musical export is U2
If all goes well and my affirmation that I put on vision board for 2015 comes to pass then I will be “JUMPING INTO IRELAND” with my kids. See you there!