While in Ireland, See the North
Mindie Burgoyne says…
So many travelers to Ireland miss the northern counties – the ones that are part of the UK. I find it’s mostly due to an unfamiliarity with crossing the border, the money exchange and stories of the “troubles.”
I found recently that the North has much of the old charm that the counties in the Republic had ten and fifteen year ago before the development as a result of the Celtic Tiger. So much of the landscape is untouched, undeveloped. It’s rugged and raw, yet as enchanting as any part of Ireland. See the hills of Donegal (in the Republic but very north), the lakes and rainbows of Fermanagh, the ancient oak groves in Derry, the pre-Christian monuments in Tyrone, the Glens of Antrim, the tomb of St. Patrick in County Down, and the holy city of Armagh.
The money exchange is easily worked, the people are wonderfully friendly, and I’ve found more ethnic strife in American cities than I’ve ever seen in the North — even when the troubles were at their peak. Most of that angst has died down and tourists have not been harmed as a result of the troubles.
Do yourself a favor and see the northern sea coast. The scenery is stunning and the population thin enough so that you’re not crowded ,but plentiful enough that you’ll always be able to meet a friend.