The small island to the west of the UK needs little introduction. From its ancient ruins that stand against a (usually) grey sky and fabled beauty spots to its ultra-modern cities - not to mention the strong ties that exist between the two countries - Ireland is an unbeatable destination.
Given the family and business connections that link the UK and Ireland it's not surprising that London-Dublin should be one of the busiest international air routes. Cheap flights to Ireland are available on more than 70 routes.
Dublin, the capital, may not have the "must-see-before-you-die" monuments, but it is cosmopolitan and very buzzy. It has a rich literary heritage, cosy pubs, elegant Georgian streets and a local population who love to "have the craic".
Outside Dublin, Ireland has a wealth of attractions - wonderful cities such as Cork, Galway and Kilkenny, teeming lakes and coastal waters and rugged landscapes such as the Connemara Way, Wicklow Gap or Ring of Kerry.
The Atlantic thunders on the west coast and the Irish Sea is to the east, giving up some of the best seafood in the world. Its farms produce the meat and vegetables for the simple but hearty Irish cuisine.
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