These captivating books on Ireland are a must-read before your trip. Non-fiction Ireland travel books include the classic Rick Steeves travel guide alongside books about the Irish language and food you'll encounter during your vacation as well.
Planning a trip to Ireland? Or perhaps you just want to explore Ireland from home as part of a homeschool geography, history, or cultural study.
These non-fiction books on Ireland cover a broad range of fascinating topics that bring the Irish Isles right to your front door.
When I'm reading up before a big trip, I always start with a few classic travel guides to get a better sense of the area I'll be visiting and the landmarks I want to add to my itinerary.
But then I like to dig a little deeper with books about the language, history, food, and culture so that I'm better prepared for the people I'll meet and the experiences I'll encounter.
Though they do speak English in Ireland, if it is your first International trip, you may be surprised at just how difficult it can be to understand through a thick Irish accent along with colloquial phrases that will be new to you.
Familiarizing yourself with an Irish phrase book and reading a little about the food you'll find in the Irish pubs where you'll be dining via Irish cookbooks will help prevent culture shock.
I've also included a few Irish travelogues if you prefer a first-hand account of Ireland vs. a more detailed guide book or history book.
You'll find a few books about Ireland for kids on the list in case you want to use these for homeschool or to prepare your children before a family vacation.
But if non-fiction books aren't your thing, don't miss this list of fun Irish books that includes romance and other lighter subjects or this fun list of St. Patrick's Day books for kids.
Essential Books on Ireland
Whether exploring your own backyard or somewhere new, discover the freedom of the open road with Lonely Planet's Ireland's BestTrips. Featuring 34 amazing road trips, plus up-to-date advice on the destinations you'll visit along the way, you can explore Dublin's heritage, Connemara's scenery and Galway's pubs - all with your trusted travel companion. Jump in the car, turn up the tunes, and hit the road!
The Little Book of Irishisms is for anyone who wants to understand the Irish, not just how we speak English, but how we are as people, relaxed about some things, picky about others.It’s also for those who'd like to sound Irish, even just for St. Patrick’s Day. An ambitious goal. But why not “give it a lash for the craic?”In this little book, you’ll learn handy tricks to Irishify your sentences – and how to avoid those clangers that people think we say but never actually do, like the classic, “Top of the morning to you.”You’ll even achieve the impossible and discover how to pronounce Irish names – like Clodagh, Tadhgh or Caoilfhinn. Call it a public service.If you’re coming to Ireland and want to fit right in, this book’s for you. If you can’t make it to our little nation, here’s a way of visiting in spirit. “Go on, go on, go on. You will, you will, you will,” to quote the infamous Irish comedy, Father Ted.The Little Book of Irishisms is the perfect gift for anyone who enjoys being part of the Irish community.
From rustic towns and emerald valleys to lively cities and moss-draped ruins, experience Ireland with the most up-to-date 2021 guide from Rick Steves! Inside Rick Steves Ireland you'll find:
- Comprehensive coverage for planning a multi-week trip through Ireland
- Rick's strategic advice on how to get the most of your time and money, with rankings of his must-see favorites
- Top sights and hidden gems, from the Rock of Cashel and the Ring of Kerry to distilleries making whiskey with hundred-year-old recipes
- How to connect with local culture: Hoist a pint at the corner pub, enjoy traditional fiddle music, and jump into conversations buzzing with brogue
- Beat the crowds, skip the lines, and avoid tourist traps with Rick's candid, humorous insight
- The best places to eat, sleep, and relax with a Guinness
- Self-guided walking tours of atmospheric neighborhoods and awe-inspiring sights
- Trip-planning tools, like how to link destinations, build your itinerary, and get from place to place
- Detailed maps, including a fold-out map for exploring on the go
- Useful resources including a packing list, Irish phrase book, historical overview, and recommended reading
- Updated to reflect changes that occurred during the Covid-19 pandemic up to the date of publication
- Over 1,000 bible-thin pages include everything worth seeing without weighing you down
- Coverage of Dublin, Kilkenny, Waterford, County Wexford, Kinsale, Cobh, Kenmare, The Ring of Kerry, Dingle Peninsula, County Clare, the Burren, Galway, the Aran Islands, Connemara, County Mayo, Belfast, Portrush, the Antrim Coast, Derry, County Donegal, and much more
There are few countries on Earth that compare to Ireland. From breathtaking landscapes to a unique culture steeped in history, Ireland is any traveler's ultimate destination. This comprehensive and fully featured guide provides you detailed insights and expert tips for you to get the most out of your trip to Ireland, including:
- The scoop on cultural attractions throughout the entire country
- Detailed itineraries to help you put together an amazing trip
- The best dining and shopping experiences for any budget
- The best walks, cycling routes, and golfing the isle has to offer
- Information on putting together a genealogical tour of Ireland
If you want to know Everything about traveling in the country of cottages and castles, limericks and literature, cozy pubs and exciting nightlife, then this is the most easy-to-use and insightful guide you can get your hands on!
Whether you want to explore Ireland’s iconic coastal scenery, visit the Cliffs of Moher or the Ring of Kerry, or experience the thriving arts and music scene in Dublin, the local Fodor’s travel experts in Ireland are here to help!
Fodor’s Essential Ireland 2021 with Belfast and Northern Ireland guidebook is packed with maps, carefully curated recommendations, and everything else you need to simplify your trip-planning process and make the most of your time.
Forget about shamrocks, leprechans, and all that blarney; 101 Things You Didn't Know about Irish History dispels the myths and tells the true story of the Irish.Inside, you'll learn about:
- Lives of the ancient Celts before the British invasions
- Famous Irish including Michael Collins, Charles Parnell—and Bono!
- The potato famine and emigration (were there really gangs of New York?)
- Irish music and dance
Complete with an Irish language primer and pronunciation guide, 101 Things You Didn't Know about Irish History is an informative reference for anyone who loves the Irish.
Whether you’re seeking the surreal beauty of the Giant’s Causeway, the historic halls of Trinity College, or the perfect pub to enjoy a pint of Guinness, your DK Eyewitness travel guide makes sure you experience all that Ireland has to offer.Beloved by Hollywood filmmakers, Ireland’s dramatic beauty will no doubt be recognizable to visitors as the backdrop of Star Wars and Game of Thrones. The cities, meanwhile, beckon with the promise of cosy pubs and charming locals. And with Belfast and Dublin offering their own unique identities and rich histories, Ireland’s two capitals are sure not to disappoint.Our annually updated guide brings Ireland to life, transporting you there like no other travel guide does with expert-led insights and advice, detailed breakdowns of all the must-see sights, photographs on practically every page, and our trademark illustrations.
The perfect St. Patrick's Day gift, and a book in the best tradition of popular history -- the untold story of Ireland's role in maintaining Western culture while the Dark Ages settled on Europe.Every year millions of Americans celebrate St. Patrick's Day, but they may not be aware of how great an influence St. Patrick was on the subsequent history of civilization. Not only did he bring Christianity to Ireland, he instilled a sense of literacy and learning that would create the conditions that allowed Ireland to become "the isle of saints and scholars" -- and thus preserve Western culture while Europe was being overrun by barbarians.In this entertaining and compelling narrative, Thomas Cahill tells the story of how Europe evolved from the classical age of Rome to the medieval era. Without Ireland, the transition could not have taken place. Not only did Irish monks and scribes maintain the very record of Western civilization -- copying manuscripts of Greek and Latin writers, both pagan and Christian, while libraries and learning on the continent were forever lost -- they brought their uniquely Irish world-view to the task.As Cahill delightfully illustrates, so much of the liveliness we associate with medieval culture has its roots in Ireland. When the seeds of culture were replanted on the European continent, it was from Ireland that they were germinated.
How much do you know about Ireland? There’s so much to learn about the Emerald Isle that even its residents don’t know. In this trivia book, you’ll learn more about Ireland’s history, pop culture, folklore, and so much more!
Like the other Sasek classics, This is Ireland is a facsimile edition of his original book from the 1960s and is still timely and current in every way. The brilliant, vibrant illustrations have been meticulously preserved, remaining true to his vision more than 40 years later and, where applicable, facts have been updated for the twenty-first century, appearing on a "This is...Today" page at the back of the book. The stylish, charming illustrations, coupled with Sasek's witty, playful narrative, makes for a perfect souvenir that will delight both children and their parents, many of whom will remember this book from their childhood.
Imagine a world where fearsome giants, mischievous fairies, charming witches, and ageless queens wander the land. In Celtic Mythology for Kids, you’ll be taken on a guided journey through the mystical realm of the Celts told through folklore and tall tales. This engaging book for kids (ages 8 to 12) will keep your imagination running as wild as Ireland’s emerald-green forests.
Featuring a handful of famous and lesser-known myths from places like Wales, Ireland, Scotland, and Brittany, this is your introduction to a faraway world of wonder. With vibrant, colorful illustrations at the beginning of every myth, you’ll feel like you’re part of the action―whether you’re chasing deep-sea treasure or starting off on a quest.
From the dawn of history to the decline of the Celtic Tiger - how Ireland has been shaped over the centuries.Ireland has been shaped by many things over the centuries: geography, war, the fight for liberty. A Brief History of Ireland is the perfect introduction to this exceptional place, its people and its culture.Ireland has been home to successive groups of settlers - Celts, Vikings, Normans, Anglo-Scots, Huguenots. It has imported huge ideas, none bigger than Christianity which it then re-exported to Europe after the fall of the Roman Empire. In the Tudor era it became the first colony of the developing English Empire. Its fraught and sometimes brutal relationship with England has dominated its modern history. Killeen argues that religion was decisive in all this: Ireland remained substantially Catholic, setting it at odds with the larger island culturally, religiously and politically. But its own culture and identity have stayed strong, most obviously in literature with a magnificent tradition of writing from the Book of Kells to the modern masters: Joyce, Yeats, Beckett and Heaney.
Ireland’s patron saint has long been shrouded in legend, but the true story of St. Patrick is far more inspiring than the myths. In St. Patrick of Ireland, Philip Freeman brings the historic Patrick and his world vividly to life. Patrick speaks in his own voice in two remarkable letters he wrote about himself and his beliefs, new translations of which are included here and which are still astonishing for their passion and eloquence.Born late in the fourth century to an aristocratic British family, Patrick’s life was changed forever when he was abducted and taken to Ireland just before his sixteenth birthday. He spent six grueling years there as a slave, but the ordeal turned him from an atheist into a true believer. After a vision in which God told him he would go home, Patrick escaped captivity and, following a perilous journey, returned safely to Britain to the amazement of his family. But even more amazing to them was his announcement that he intended to go back to Ireland to spend the rest of his life ministering to the people who had once enslaved him.Set against the turbulent backdrop of the British Isles during the last years of the Roman Empire, St. Patrick of Ireland brilliantly brings to life the real Patrick, a man whose deep spiritual conviction and devotion helped to transform a country.
The debut cookbook from Cathal Armstrong featuring 130 recipes showcasing modern Irish fare, along with stories about Armstrong's journey from Dublin to Washington, DC, and becoming an internationally recognized four-star chef, the owner of seven successful food and drink establishments, and a leader in the sustainable-food movement.
Pubs in Ireland are the cornerstone of their communities, relaxed places where locals and visitors can experience the best of traditional Irish hospitality. Many pubs have also become the place to go for a great meal, with a choice of both traditional and contemporary dishes. In recent years Irish cooking has been transformed, with skillful cooks making the most of wonderful fresh local produce to create delicious new dishes and giving a twist to many classics. This tasty cookbook includes the best of both worlds - with best-loved favorites s Irish Stew, Corned Beef and Split Pea and Ham Soup and newer recipes, like Scallop Chowder or Oatmeal and Raspberry Cream to set your taste buds tingling. So just open this book to enjoy the best of traditional and contemporary Irish pub cooking.
Safe-keepers of Ireland's tastiest and most precious culinary traditions, grannies from all across the Emerald Isle have long kept the secret recipes that define Irish cooking. Classic foods such as brown bread and potato soup have been passed down from generation to generation, and faithfully served by grannies in thatch-roofed cottages and local village pubs for years.
In his thirties, married, and staring down impending fatherhood, Tom Coyne was well familiar with the last refuge of the adult male: the golfing trip. Intent on designing a golf trip to end all others, Coyne looked to Ireland, the place where his father had taught him to love the game years before. As he studied a map of the island and plotted his itinerary, it dawned on Coyne that Ireland was ringed with golf holes. The country began to look like one giant round of golf, so Coyne packed up his clubs and set off to play all of it. And since Irish golfers didn?t take golf carts, neither would he. He would walk the entire way.A Course Called Ireland is the story of a walking- averse golfer who treks his way around an entire country, spending sixteen weeks playing every seaside hole in Ireland and often battling through all four seasons in one Irish afternoon. Coyne plays everything from the top-ranked links in the world to nine-hole courses crowded with livestock. Along the way, he searches out his family?s roots, discovers that a once-poor country has been transformed by an economic boom, and finds that the only thing tougher to escape than Irish sand traps are Irish pubs. By turns hilarious and poetic, A Course Called Ireland is a magnificent tour of a vibrant land and a paean to the world?s greatest game.
101 Irish Phrases You Need To Know: An essential guide to Irish lingo, slang and pub talk is a book designed to help visitors to Ireland get to grips with the way we speak English here.The variant of English spoken in Ireland, Hiberno-English has many forms and varies from county to county so we have attempted to pull together as many well-known phrase together in one go.Humorous, irreverent and always witty, the book will amuse and entertain you as well as informing, amazing and delighting you.
Despite the many exotic places Peter McCarthy has visited, he finds that nowhere else can match the particular magic of Ireland, his mother's homeland. In McCarthy's Bar, his journey begins in Cork and continues along the west coast to Donegal in the north. Traveling through spectacular landscapes, but at all times obeying the rule, "never pass a bar that has your name on it," he encounters McCarthy's bars up and down the land, meeting fascinating people before pleading to be let out at four o'clock in the morning.Through adventures with English hippies who have colonized a desolate mountain; roots-seeking, buffet-devouring American tourists; priests for whom the word "father" has a loaded meaning; enthusiastic Germans who "here since many years holidays are making;" and his fellow barefoot pilgrims on an island called Purgatory, Peter pursues the secrets of Ireland's global popularity and his own confused Irish-Anglo identity.Written by someone who is at once an insider and an outsider, McCarthy's Bar is a wonderfully funny and affectionate portrait of a rapidly changing country.
More Ireland Trip Tips
If you're planning a trip to Ireland, don't miss my 7 Days in Ireland Itinerary and get yourself excited for the adventure by watching one of the best romantic movies set in Ireland to get a peek at where you'll be going!
[…] Looking for good reads before you travel to Ireland? This list of non-fiction books on Ireland has excellent options for both adults and […]
[…] Looking for good reads before you travel to Ireland? This list of non-fiction books on Ireland has excellent options for both adults and […]