|Most popular in||December||High demand for flights, 15% potential price rise|
|Cheapest in||April||Best time to find cheap flights, 6% potential price drop|
|Average price||C$ 627||Price for this month|
|Cheapest price||C$ 474||From Toronto to Dublin|
C$ 653 - C$ 1191
9 - 20 °C
51 - 85 mm
When to fly to Ireland
The summer months are peak season. This is when the weather is generally at its best (although rain showers are always a possibility), festivals and cultural events and literary summer schools are in full swing.
Early fall (September and October) and spring (March through May, excluding the peak St. Patrick’s Day on March 17) are good times to take cheap flights to Ireland.
Winter is generally off season especially the weeks after Christmas. January and February can be cold and grey.
The island on the edge of Europe might be small but it’s a big hitter when it comes to music, literature, sport and its people’s ability to find the craic in every situation.
The Celtic Tiger roared through the Republic in the 1990s and brought unprecedented wealth and immigrants on cheap flights to Ireland seeking work. The Ireland of traditional, small farms and industries went high-tech – at least in the cities of Dublin, Cork, Limerick and Galway, but it has not forgotten its roots. Traditional music sessions are a weekly event in many country pubs and Irish dancing is a popular pastime.
Buffeted by the Atlantic Ocean on the west coast and the calmer Irish Sea on the east, there is nowhere in Ireland that is more than 50km from the sea. The rolling hills are made for walking, climbing, biking and horse-riding and the many golf courses are lush and, of course, green.
The seas around Ireland give up plentiful and delicious seafood and its still largely family-run farms produce the meat and vegetables for Ireland’s hearty cuisine.
Most indirect flights to Ireland from Canada will offer a duration of around 14h 30m flight time, depending on the number of stops and the length of the layover. There are shorter one-stop flights available with flight times as low as 9h 50m, and direct service from Toronto to Dublin takes 6h 30m flight time. Travelers should watch Ireland travel deals, as some discounted fares will require 2-3 stopovers or plane changes, along with travel times up to 20h or more.
Currently, direct service to Ireland is only available out of Toronto, from Pearson International (YYZ) Airport. Montreal, Vancouver, Calgary, and Ottawa have flights available to Ireland, but they are one-stop routes. Flights arriving in Ireland will land in Cork, Dublin, Shannon, Knock, Donegal, Kerry, and other major cities. Aer Lingus runs the direct route to Dublin, while Air Canada and American Airlines also have regular Canada to Ireland routes.
Ireland is a larger country, but it has a fairly solid network of roads and highways that make transit easy by car. In the major cities and towns, public transit is readily available, but travellers will risk missing out on the charming villages and castles that are out in the sprawling countryside. Those who want to see more should rent a car if they are brave enough to deal with narrow roads and driving on the opposite side. Like many European countries, train travel is popular in Ireland. Irish Rail offers train service from Dublin to other cities and towns. Bus Eireann offers express buses and local service to almost every town in the country, as well.
Ireland is a beautiful country that is full of natural wonders to explore. Powerscourt House and Gardens is a sprawling estate in the Wicklow area that features two championship golf courses, a 47-acre garden, a restaurant, and a five-star hotel, as well as a 22-room life-size dollhouse and a children’s museum. Visitors can enjoy a cruise on the Shannon River, find fine dining, pubs, and plenty of city life in Dublin and Belfast, or visit Killarney National Park. The Dingle Peninsula, Giant’s Causeway, and Winter Solstice in Newgrange are also worth a visit. Blarney Castle offers a glimpse of medieval times, while the Guinness Storehouse offers brewery tours and other attractions.
Canadian citizens travelling to Ireland will need to carry a Canadian passport with them, and all passports must be valid for the entire duration of the stay in the country. Tourist and business visas are not required for stays of less than 90 days. In some cases, customs may require proof of return or onward travel and sufficient funds for the duration of your visit.
Summers in Ireland are usually dry with average temperatures of 16 C. Temperatures are a bit cooler in the spring and fall, while winters are rainy and with temperatures around 4 C. It’s coldest in January and February and warmest in July and August, but it rarely gets hot. It rains a lot in Ireland, and the weather can change quickly, so it’s a good idea to dress in layers.
Ryanair and Aer Arann offer intercity flights, Kerry to Dublin or Dublin to Mayo for example.
In the cities (Dublin, Cork and Limerick) there are good public bus networks. There is a rail line that runs along the coast in Dublin called the DART and a light rail system called the LUAS that has two lines. One run east-west through Dublin’s Northside, then crosses the River Liffey and travels south-west to Tallaght, the other in the south side of Dublin.
Iarnród Éireann runs the railroads. Intercity routes cover major cities and towns around the country while Commuter Rail covers commuter routes to Dublin.
The national bus company is Bus Eireann, which connects the cities and towns. There are several private coach companies too.
Renting a car is a great option as the county towns and smaller villages will not have very frequent bus services. All the major car rental companies are represented at the airports.