By Rachael Funk
Straddling the River Shannon in County Limerick, the city of Limerick has been revitalized and boasts the distinction as the country’s first Irish City of Culture, as awarded in 2014. The buzzing city captures the hearts of its visitors and offers a host of events, entertainment, food, and culture.
What to know
Founded by Vikings in the 9th century, Limerick is one of Ireland's oldest cities but also one of its quirkiest, showcasing fine riverside walks, refreshed wharfs, and a vibrant foodie scene. This crumbling Georgian grid of Newtown Pery is steeped in history and holds the largest collection of Georgian townhouses outside of Dublin. The city is poised for a tourism boom, so go now to stay ahead of the travel trends!
When to Go
Any time between May and September are great for travel to Limerick. The summer months of June through August tend to be the warmest, so be sure to bring warmer clothes if you opt for a fall trip. March, April, and September tend to be the driest months, with the least humid month tending to be April and the most humid month generally landing in November.
How to Get Around
If you want to get around without worrying about driving through the town, city bikes are available for rent. During the city’s refurbishment, new bike paths were constructed to make biking safer and more convenient for cyclists. Limerick is also relatively easy to navigate by car, so if you’re not a biker, you’re still in luck! Be sure to brush up on the driving laws and be prepared for a stick shift rental unless otherwise specified.
Where to Eat
The city’s fast-developing foodie scene is an excellent addition to the area’s pubs and cafes. On your trip, you can look forward to good coffee, good food, and low prices. Breakfast lovers will not be disappointed by the city’s devotion to the most important meal of the day. Here are a few places you may want to try before you leave.
- Canteen 26 Catherine St, Limerick, Ireland +353 85 215 3212
- Freddy’s Bistro Lower Glentworth Street, Limerick, Ireland +35361418749
- AZUR Restaurant 8 George's Quay, Limerick, Ireland +353 61 314 994
- The Curragower Bar and Restaurant The Curragower Pub, Clancys Strand, Limerick, Ireland +353 61 321 788
- Russells Bar Father Russell Rd, Gouldavoher, Limerick, Ireland +353 61 308 080
- The Mustard Seed at Echo Lodge Echo Lodge, Ballingarry, Co. Limerick, Ireland +353 69 68508
What to See
King John’s Castle
A 13th-century castle located in the heart of medieval Limerick City, King John’s Castle is a great stop for families, couples, and solo travelers. After a redevelopment that took over $6.5 million, the site is now more interesting, attractive, and educational than ever before. Free parking is an added bonus for those with rental cars.
The Hunt Museum
Boasting one of Ireland’s greatest private collections of art and antiques, The Hunt Museum is a rich cultural experience. The collections range from the Neolithic period to the 20th century and include works by Renoir, Picasso, and Yeats. The Exhibition gallery shows a spectrum of temporary and permanent exhibitions.
Set off on an adventure through the city on a hunt for the city’s best street art. Snap photos of the vibrant murals created by renowned street artists from all over the world. Some pieces are commissioned, some are not, but the inspiring messages and designs will help make this trip truly special.
Tips and Tricks
If you’re a rugby fan, a stadium tour of Thomond Park will get you a behind-the-scenes peek of what things look like on and off the field.
If you’re traveling with children, head over to People’s Park to enjoy a picnic and let them burn some energy on the children’s playground.
Don’t miss the Limerick Milk Market, which boasts nearly 50 stalls and 21 shop units that sell everything from souvenirs to snacks
Adare is a designated heritage village which means idyllic cottages, boutique shops, and live entertainment. Stroll through the colorful village and learn about the area’s rich history while you take in one of Ireland’s prettiest towns!
Rock of Cashel
One of the most-visited heritage sites in all of Ireland, Rock of Cashel is an icon of Tipperary. Also known as St. Patrick’s Rock and Cashel of the Kings, the site is thought to be where Aenghus the King of Munster was converted by St. Patrick in the 5th century AD.
A forest park on the Limerick/Tipperary county borders, this is a gorgeous place to spend a day away from the city. Venture through the red sandstone gorge of the River Clare and follow one of several nature loops through the picturesque park.
Situated along the Wild Atlantic Way, the Dingle Peninsula has earned the distinction of being one of the most scenic stretches of coastline in the world. Take a journey through Ireland’s raw natural beauty along the sparkling sea and through the rugged mountains.
Tour the Rebel City for a day! Tour the Jameson Distillery, shop at the English Market, and sink your teeth into the city’s epic gastronomy. If you’re up for an adventure after dark, check out the nightlife in the city, also! Packed with lively pubs and popular clubs, the city shines once the sun goes down.