Ireland Warnings and Dangers
Ireland is one of the most popular places to visit in western Europe. While it is a land of green vistas and ancient sites, it is also a place that can present minor hazards you need to know about.
If you’re heading here, you need to remember that even rural areas can have unexpected issues. Pay careful attention to all warning signs and be mindful of the issues that locals consider important.
Driving in Ireland
While not advisable in the major cities, renting a car can be useful in the more rural areas of the country. If you are driving, keep in mind that sheep, cattle and other animals have the right of way. If you see a farmer with his flock, you will have to wait until they’re all done crossing the street. Also keep in mind that speed limits are posted in miles per hour but distances in kilometers. The roads can be very narrow without a shoulder. The wind is strong and heavy in much of the country and will knock off signposts so keep that in mind and keep maps on hand at all times. Also remember that you drive on the left not the right. Roads can be full of pebbles so if you are biking instead of driving, keep patches on hand to repair your wheels.
The sea surrounds Ireland. You may be tempted to run in and take a swim, especially in the summer when the weather can be warmer than you might think. Bear in mind that even when signs say it is safe, you might be better off staying on land unless you are a really strong swimmer. The current along the waters in Ireland can be very strong. Walking can also be very dangerous along the roads. It’s better to be safe and take a bus instead. If you are here during the winter, Ireland has a relatively mild climate with little snow; however, it can be rainy and damp, so bring an umbrella. Many Irish houses do not have central heating, so bring warm clothing to keep away the watery chill. The weather can change quickly from warm to chill so keep that in mind when you are hiking.
Listen to Warnings
Take local warnings seriously. For example, if you are visiting The Cliffs of Moher, a scenic site of lovely high cliffs, heed the warnings you see posted. Do not go past certain points or the wind may literally push you to the bottom. The same applies to another popular area called Howth Head. You may not want to walk along the path after rain.
Some of the bigger cities in Ireland can be just as dangerous. Avoid certain areas of LImerick and Cork, especially near the city’s housing projects and late at night.
More from SmarterTravel:
- Ireland Travel Guide: What to Do in Ireland
- Getting Around Ireland: Transportation Tips
- 7 Magical Places in Ireland
Editor’s note: The information contained on this page was compiled using real traveler reviews about warnings or dangers in Ireland.
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