Solo Travel in Ireland: Why I Love and Recommend it

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Ireland is my favourite country. As the first place I ever visited I now consider the emerald isle to be my home away from home and have returned multiple times. With stunning scenery, friendly locals, and delicious food I think Ireland is a must-visit for anyone. But, if you don’t have any to go with- don’t let it stop you. Ireland is perfect for solo travel. So pack your bag, grab your passport, and book a flight because you are going to love solo travel in Ireland. Here’s why. 

Headed to Ireland? I’ve created a couple of super detailed Ireland itineraries based on my favourite routes, places, accommodations, restaurants, and more. You can find them for sale here.


A Choice of Accommodations

Ireland is one of few places that actually has a decent choice of accommodations that won’t burst your travel budget. Hostels are always a favourite among solo travellers, and there are plenty to be found around the country (many of which are, conveniently, attached to pubs!).

However, for those who aren’t big fans of the hostel life, yet don’t want to spend all the money on a hotel room, I recommend B&Bs. Irish B&Bs are some of the best in the world; with friendly hosts and full Irish breakfasts to start your day, you may never want to leave.

Owners are helpful and often willing to go out of their way to help solo travellers experience the best of what the area has to offer. This is especially true in terms of solo female travellers, whom most owners tend to keep an extra eye out for.

Check or for some top rated options. 

Tip: Keep in mind when booking a B&B; some are located quite a ways out of town. So if you don’t have a car, make sure to ask about the location and make sure it’s either within walking distance or there is public transportation.

Friar's Glen B&B just ourside of Killarney

Getting Around Ireland is Pretty Easy

There’s no need of worrying about having to rent a car to travel around which is one of the best benefits of solo travel in Ireland (although, road tripping it is a great way to see the country). Ireland is well connected by a network of buses, and for some routes, trains. Tickets can be purchased in advance (online or in the station) or right before departure at the station. Student fares are available, though purchasing them in person is not recommended as some stations only accept Irish student ID. So to be safe, it’s best to book online.

Another bonus: bus tickets are not specific to certain times, only certain days. So if your trip has a stopover in a small village and you want to stretch your legs and explore, there’s no issue with getting on a later bus. Express buses are also available on some routes, though they will cost you a little extra. However, depending on the route they may be worth it.

Tip: Bus tickets are significantly less expensive than train tickets and in many circumstances (ie Dublin to Galway), the bus route is faster.

Major Irish Bus lines include: Bus Éireann and City Link.

Ireland Has Plenty of Affordable Day Trip Options for Solo Travellers 

Ireland is small, and there is plenty you can see by just taking day trip. Local tour offices in major cities offer a variety of tours targeted to your needs and interests to multiple destinations across the Island. It’s a great way to see the sights, and if you get a good guide, hear some great folklore and stories about the area. It’s also a great way to meet fellow travellers. Before you book, check and see if your hotel has any discounts or affiliation with a certain company, and check online for discount codes. Student fares are available on most tours if you have proper ID (any student ID is accepted).

There are plenty of day trip options available from both Dublin and Galway, many of which are priced around the $50 mark. Some of my favourites to recommend are:

From Dublin: Northern Ireland, Wicklow and Glendalough, Cliffs of Moher

From Galway: Aran Islands, Connemara and Kylemore Abbey, Cliffs of Moher

Ireland’s Pub Life is Solo Travel Friendly

The Irish are known for being friendly, and this stereotype doesn’t disappoint. If you are looking to get in with the locals, Ireland is a great place to do it, and what better place to find yourself some local friends than at the pub.

Pubs are great and many serve as restaurants as well as the watering hole for your nightly entertainment. All age groups can be found here; from young and barely legal teenagers to old grandfathers with hearing aids and jaunty caps. The pub culture of Ireland is one of the best things in the country and everyone is welcome.

Don’t worry about being alone, just grab a seat at the bar and chat to the bartender. Sooner or later you’ll fall into conversation with some fellow patrons and before you know it you’ll have some new drinking buddies.

For some of the best pubs in Dublin check out this post. Or, for some of my favourites in Galway, check this list. 

*Tip: Proper Irish drinking etiquette is to buy everyone a round. So if people are taking turns buying you drinks, it’s not just because you are alone or good looking. Keep things going by buying everyone a round when it’s your turn, or else you might lose your new found friends.

A night out at the pub

Tips to Keep in Mind: aka How NOT to Make a Fool of Yourself in Ireland

      • When people tell you the ‘crack’ is great, they aren’t talking about drugs. Craic is the Irish word for a fun atmosphere. So if you are looking for a good time, yes you want to go somewhere with great craic.
      • If you are waiting to be served and someone asks if you are alright, they don’t actually care how your day is going. They are ready to help you or take your order.
      • A proper Guinness is poured in stages, so don’t panic if you order and the bartender pours half your pint and then moves along to someone else. He/ she didn’t forget about you, just give it a minute.
      • Drinking in Ireland is a social event; it’s not a race to see who can pound back the pints the fastest. Pace yourself.
      • Baby Guinness shots are the best things ever. Trust me.

Must Have Travel Accessories for Solo Travel in Ireland

I love solo travel, but it does mean I need to take some extra precautions. For any other solo travellers out there, especially my ladies, I highly recommend you pack the following:

      • A lockable backpack for when you are in crowded areas and have nobody to keep an eye on your back.
      • A lightweight power bank. There is nothing worse than your phone dying when you are using it as a map!
      • Door stopper. Most hostels/hotels are safe, but if you are worried this will help you sleep better!

For more tips on what to pack for Ireland check out myIreland packing list. 

Psst: Wondering what my must-have travel items are? Here’s what you’ll always find in my bag.

A Note on Travel Insurance in Ireland

Please, do NOT travel without travel insurance! I’ve had to rely on mine multiple times. While the cost may seem annoying and better spent elsewhere, trust me when I say you’ll be sorry if you don’t have it. For just a couple bucks a day, you can save yourself a whole lot of stress and money. I like to recommend SafetyWing for travel medical insurance as they are one of the most affordable options I’ve found, plus, they are who I use and I have had great experiences with them. Learn more about the importance of travel insurance here.

Considering solo travel in Ireland? Its the perfect place for a solo trip. Here's why. #Ireland #Solotravel #solofemaletravel 


  1. Ryan Biddulph on January 27, 2015 at 2:12 pm

    I rarely do the solo bit as my wife and I usually travel together but the thing that’d vibe with me most is that rental car situation. Hate it when a travel spot has you by the cajones – or other stuff lol – and you need to rent a car, to get around. Then they jack up those sweet prices. We ran into this in Fiji last year. But we were blessed, in that we could walk into town or get a cheap taxi to local spots. If we did travel, we sought out the advice of some Fijians, and we befriended a few, then hitchhiked with them. Not nearly as dangerous as it sounds, as I only nearly died like 3 to 4 times hahahaha!

    Ireland is beyond beautiful, and your stories and pictures painted a wonderful picture for us. Thanks so much and keep on inspiring Hannah!


  2. Alli on January 27, 2015 at 2:31 pm

    I haven’t been to Ireland yet, Hannah! Soon though, soon! It looks incredible. The pub life seems incredibly fun in particular (You look ravishing in that photo).

    • Hannah Logan on January 27, 2015 at 3:07 pm

      You’ll love it 🙂 and hahaa thanks! We had walked in the rain so my hair went crazyy!

  3. Ben Warner on January 27, 2015 at 2:51 pm

    Fantastic perspective. I actually did Dublin solo in February 2013 after a work event.

    I thought it was extremely easy to meet new people, both local and tourist. I found myself taking the Jameson tour with two army boys from Germany, and later attending an Irish comedy show at a local pub (although some of the regional jokes I didn’t understand).

    Great beer, great people, not the best food or weather.


    • Hannah Logan on January 27, 2015 at 3:08 pm

      Haha yes, the weather can be a bit of a downer but I think it’s worth it for a visit 🙂

  4. Meg Jerrard on January 27, 2015 at 4:22 pm

    Great post! Ireland really is one of the best places I have ever traveled solo – it’s just so easy, people are so welcoming and friendly, and you really do have friends wherever you go!

  5. Els on January 27, 2015 at 5:16 pm

    Haha, yes, I was confused as well in the beginning when bartenders asked me if “I was allright” 🙂 Or if they said “Are you getting?”
    I learnt proper BBC English when I was at school, so this Irish variation was very confusing to me 🙂 But you gotta love the pubs and the craic indeed! 🙂

  6. Sammi Wanderlustin' on January 27, 2015 at 10:49 pm

    Can you believe I haven’t been to Ireland? And yes I know it’s right there! I was hoping my beau would have time to visit with me when he’s back in the UK because I wanna visit my beour and some of our friends from Lapland whilst I’m there.

  7. Carey @Blazeadventure on January 27, 2015 at 11:06 pm

    Hi Hannah,

    very informative article. Had to make sure i was reading the “crack” part right 🙂 What would you think is a feasible daily budget for say….2 weeks to a month?

    • Hannah Logan on January 28, 2015 at 10:04 pm

      Haha yes you read the crack right…aren’t you glad I gave you the heads up? Haha.
      Budget depends on where you stay. Hostels in the bigger cities ( epecially Temple Bar district in Dublin) are pricey, especially on weekends, and for the same 40-50 euro you may be able to find a good B&B. In the smaller towns expect 15-20 euro/night. Busses you can average out between 10-20 euro or so each route (one ways). As for tours, the most expensive are the 12-13 hour all day trips from Dublin and, as of my last visit in March 2014, were about 65 euro at the highest end. Food you can go all over the place from cheap sandwiches at cafes to full meals at restaurants. You can definitely make food budget work how you want. If you are planning a trip and looking for specific recommendations feel free to contact me, I’m happy to help!

  8. Nina on January 28, 2015 at 12:35 pm

    Hi Hannah,

    I couldn’t agree with you more! I’ve been to Ireland only twice (Cork, and we recently celebrated new Year in Dublin) and it would be my top destination to travel solo. Ireland is fantastic, there are so many things to do and see and the people are so great. It’s so easy to meet new people in Ireland, top country! 🙂

    • Hannah Logan on January 28, 2015 at 9:57 pm

      I bet New Year in Dublin was a blast!

  9. Raphael Alexander Zoren on January 28, 2015 at 8:12 pm

    Ireland has been high on my list for a long time, great shots!

    • Hannah Logan on January 28, 2015 at 9:56 pm

      Thanks Raphael, you definitely need to go!

  10. Toccara on January 28, 2015 at 11:14 pm

    Good insights (crack, buying a round of drinks, Guinness pouring, etc.)… all good things to know before making your first trip to Ireland! We visited this summer and loved it. Everyone was super friendly and you cant beat the scenery!

    • Hannah Logan on January 29, 2015 at 12:45 am

      It really is beautiful isn’t it? 🙂

  11. Jenna on January 29, 2015 at 6:56 am

    Totally agree with you on the Baby Guinness shots–love them! Reading though this makes me want to head back to Ireland–we absolutely loved it there and can definitely see how it would be a perfect place to travel solo!

  12. kami on January 29, 2015 at 10:03 am

    I’ve been twice to Ireland but never did a solo travelling there, always went to visit friends. but it was such an easy country to travel around! I so would love to go back and explore some more!

  13. Lauren on January 30, 2015 at 7:41 pm

    Would love to visit Ireland! Great tip about staying in B&Bs. I’m not a big hostel person really so I think that Justin and I would do great staying at some cute B&Bs! Would love to take in the environment, the scenery, and hopefully meet some people while there! 🙂

    • Hannah Logan on January 30, 2015 at 8:17 pm

      The B&Bs are fantastic. If you ever go let me know, I have some good recommendations 🙂

  14. Bailey K. on January 31, 2015 at 7:22 pm

    Haha, I loved the “How NOT to Make a Fool of Yourself” list! So funny, but good to know. I didn’t know any of those things!

    • Hannah Logan on January 31, 2015 at 10:50 pm

      haha, well you are now prepared for an Irish adventure!

  15. Joleen on August 1, 2015 at 7:14 pm

    I’m planning to go to Ireland for my first solo travel for my 19th birthday. I loved all the pictures and the blog posts about Ireland. And I cant wait to go. But the thing is I think i’m too young or too inexperienced to go there alone. I was thinking to just visit Galway, then stay there for the rest of my trip. Or just travel with my family. Any suggestions or tips?

    • Hannah Logan on August 1, 2015 at 10:27 pm

      Honestly- I think Ireland is THE perfect place to start travelling as a solo female and I don’t have a single bad thing to say about Galway- although I definitely think you should explore more 🙂 feel free to email me with you want- more than happy to help you with tips and planning!

  16. brian@irelandfavorites on November 18, 2015 at 9:19 pm

    Hi Hanna, Yes Ireland is a great place to travel solo, but there are some nuances also. The pub is more than just a bar to most locals and there can be quite a difference between big city tourist pubs, big city local pubs, and small country pubs. I would advise against strolling into a pub and buying a round for the bar, it won’t endear you to locals. The best way is to sit at the bar wait to be served and order a pint, fight the urge to engage others, wait for your Guinness to be poured properly, wait for your pint to settle and take a nice long sip, thank the barman. What happens next depending on the pub is most likely a local will ask what country you are from or what part of the states you are from, they know because your accent will give you away, in a nice way. Once a little conversation flows you find yourself right in the middle of a craicing good time.

    • Hannah Logan on November 19, 2015 at 12:59 am

      Hey Brian. I definitely didn’t recommend walking into a new pub and just buying everyone a round- I don’t think most travellers could afford that, especially in the busy pubs 😉 it was more of a comment for when you meet or go out with a group of Irish friends. I’ve done exactly what you said- sit at the bar with my pint- many times and ended up in a small group of locals. In that situation you need to kick in the rounds- although usually I don’t start them.

  17. Tanvee on May 9, 2016 at 5:35 pm

    Hey! I’m planning a trip to Ireland sometime in November. This is my first solo trip so I’m completely lost as to how and where to begin! How long before do you need to start the planning and the bookings? Also, any recommendations for some of the best places to visit? Thank you! Any tips and suggestions will be highly appreciated.

  18. […] I’m probably a bit biased since Ireland was where I started, but the Emerald Isle will always be one of my top recommendations for all solo travellers. The pub life, which is accessible to everyone- including solo females, makes it one of the easiest places to fit in and meet people. The country is full of natural beauty, picturesque towns, and interesting history, and the Irish themselves are legendary for their friendliness. For more on why Ireland is perfect for solo travel read this. […]

  19. […] could talk for days about why I love Ireland and why I think it’s perfect not just for solo travellers and women, but for everyone. And guess what? I’m going to! Because for my most recent trip I […]

  20. Kanika Bakshi on November 5, 2018 at 7:00 am

    One thing I will say about Ireland is that. The cheapest country, people in there are nice and would not easily fool you but if you are a solo traveler they might fool, people always take an advantage.thanks for the article

    • Hannah Logan on November 7, 2018 at 2:42 am

      I guess there are always some rotten people but for the most part I think they are pretty good 🙂

  21. Kanika Bakshi on February 18, 2019 at 7:05 am

    Planning a trip to Ireland next December with my family thanks for the great share of knowledge. keep posting such a wonderful article

  22. Kanika Bakshi on February 19, 2019 at 6:50 am

    Ireland is one of the coolest places to beside any other country I have visited Ireland with my office colleague and saw northern lights it was amazing Ireland is the very cold country with limited crowed but it’s a fun place to visit the nice article, surely will visit again.

  23. Freedom Panda on March 21, 2019 at 6:29 am

    Thank you for such an informative, fun article, Hannah! I’ll be touching down in Ireland this May to hike the Ireland Way for 5 week’s, I’m really looking forward to it. 650 miles of pure bliss & craic ? I’ve been to Dublin once, 2014, for a few days. Can’t wait to be back!

    • Hannah Logan on March 21, 2019 at 1:27 pm

      That will be so amazing! (hopefully not too rainy-haha).

  24. Anne M Zinn on June 20, 2019 at 8:07 am

    Hi there! I’m an older, first time solo traveler and first time to Europe! I want to go in November, and I’ve never travelled solo before. Any advice would be appreciated! I’m 61, and love to have fun, but don’t want to be trapped on a bus with a bunch of oldsters!

    • Hannah Logan on June 20, 2019 at 10:58 am

      Haha I get you! November can be a bit of a hit or miss in Europe weather wise. Is Ireland where you wanted to go, or are you open to anywhere? Feel free to email me at and we can discuss further

      • Kathi Elsesser on September 30, 2019 at 1:47 am

        Looking to go to Ireland.. on my bucket list!! I am Planning on going alone,which makes me some what uncomfortable.. any groups for solo travelers coming up. interested in seeing Pubs, country side and some local culture!

        • Hannah Logan on September 30, 2019 at 1:44 pm

          There are a bunch of companies who do offer Ireland tours. I don’t…right now. I have recently partnered with Intrepid Travel in running a group tours. I’m doing my first one next spring to Greece. However, Ireland might be a good one too.

  25. […] all add to the draw of Galway’s nightlife. But another huge factor, especially important to solo female travellers in Ireland, is that Galway has been awarded the purple flag; crediting the city for its vibrant, diverse, but […]

  26. […] wouldn’t say Malta is my top-rated destination for solo travellers (Ireland and Portugal still top my list for those spots), however, it’s definitely a good spot. Being […]

  27. […] Solo Travel in Ireland […]

  28. […] to Edinburgh was my first real solo backpacking experience. Sure I’d been living in Ireland for a few weeks by then and seen a bit of the country, but I had either been with my parents or […]

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