Ireland
Bodhranii - Irish Drum

Ireland

Ireland is an island to the west of England. It is also known as the 'emerald isle' due to its lush green flora and forna. It a large river running through it called the Shannon. The overall climate of the island is mild but with a very high rainfall (hence the lush vegetation!). Ireland is actually a fairly small island being only just over 35,000 square miles in total.

As well as being known for its beautiful vivid green landscapes, Ireland is also well known for music and dance. Traditionally folk music is the music of choice here but during the 20th century when Ireland was trying to modernise with the rest of the world it fell out of favour slightly - this was particularly true in urban areas of the country. However, this did not last for long and the 1960's saw a revival in this traditional type of music. Elements of it even featured in songs by such popular artists as Van Morrison and Thin Lizzy. This is also true of more modern (and predominantly Irish) artists such as The Corrs, Bewitched and Westlife. Ireland is also the most successful country to take part in the Eurovision song contest, having won the competition seven times.

Ireland has been inhabited for more than 9,00 years although not a lot is known about the earliest settlers. The majority of the people live in the eastern or northern areas of the country and this is more true now than it was many years ago when the population was more or less evenly spaced out. Ireland has been a popular destination for those looking to emigrate for many years and nationalities living in the country include English, Polish and Czech citizens.

If you are visiting Ireland for a holiday or a short break you will find more than enough to occupy you! Ireland is very popular with surfers and has some amazing waves if surfing is your thing. Otherwise there are beautiful beaches and walks to explore as well as historic monuments and buildings. Horse riding along the beaches is a popular attraction for visitors, and there are some brilliant golfing greens on which to tee off.

If you're not much of a country person there is numerous museums, art galleries and other entertainment to be found in more urban areas.