Find out what visitors to Ireland can look forward to in 2012 and beyond.
What’s On in Ireland in 2012!
Throughout 2012 there are many amazing reasons to visit the island of Ireland. From the launch of the new Titanic Belfast visitor centre this past March to the PGA European Tour Irish Open at Royal Portrush this June, to the Dublin Tall Ships Festival in August…which will all lead up to The Gathering in 2013! Read on to find out what visitors to Ireland can look forward to in 2012 and beyond.
GREAT VALUE IN 2012
This is the year for Canadians to check Ireland off their bucket list with a wealth of great-value options available to visitors to the island of Ireland. In addition to the continued strong Canadian dollar against the Euro and Pound Sterling, the Irish government has also confirmed the tax (VAT) rate on tourism services in the Republic of Ireland will remain at nine per cent until the end of 2013. A recent survey byHotels.com also showed that hotels in Ireland offer some of the best value in Europe and listed Dublin as one of its ‘best-value cities’.
FESTIVALS & EVENTS
The island of Ireland is known for its amazing festivals celebrating everything from storytelling, music, maritime, food and sport – and 2012 is no exception. Read on to discover some of this year’s highlights.
The Gathering 2013
Ireland is preparing for its homecoming in 2013 - officially termed ‘The Gathering’ - and will welcome anyone who has Irish blood, a link to Ireland, or even just a love of our country to join us for a series of amazing and diverse events throughout 2013. So let’s get ready to help Canadians to light up in 2013 with an unprecedented celebration of Ireland’s global community, and our past, present and future.
Dublin Tall Ships Festival
Ireland’s capital will welcome the Tall Ships from August 23 to 26 when 70 majestic Tall Ships, starting in St. Malo, France, in early July will travel across the Bay of Biscay with stops in ports in Portugal and Spain before sailing north to Dublin Bay. Join the Tall Ships plus 1,500 sail trainees and an anticipated 500,000 maritime, music and festival fans for one of this year’s biggest celebrations with live music, street theatres, fireworks, heritage walks, treasure hunts and much more.
Clipper Round the World Yacht Race
Coinciding with its own Maritime Festival from June 30 to July 8, Derry~Londonderry will welcome the 10-strong international fleet as it plays host to the final transatlantic stage of the 40,000-mile race, with teams arriving from Nova Scotia, Canada, during the last leg. The city’s own yacht, the Derry~Londonderry, is promoting the city’s UK City of Culture 2013 status on its travels.
Dublin’s Phoenix Park Celebrates 350 Years
Phoenix Park, one of the world’s largest city parks and one of Dublin’s main attractions, is celebrating its 350th anniversary in 2012 with a year-long program of events and a look back at its colourful history. The park, which covers 1,752 acres (707 hectares), has played host to everything from outdoor rock concerts, to motor racing and papal visits. Around 40 Viking graves were discovered in the 19th century at the edge of the park, making it the biggest Viking cemetery outside of Scandinavia.
Galway Volvo Ocean Race
The City of Tribes will welcome the race teams as the final stop of this year’s race with a HUGE party. Galway is known the world over for its friendly people, charming streets, shopping and energetic nightlife, and it’s now revving up for another fun-filled Volvo event - the perfect place for a lively stay from June 30 to July 8, 2012.
Belfast Festival at Queens
Celebrating 50 years in 2012, Belfast’s premier arts festival features a mix of talent across dance, music, theatre, visual arts & film at one of Europe’s biggest festivals.