As a tour guide in Dublin, August is one of my busiest months in the year. Many people from all over the world choose to explore Ireland when it has its best weather. While you might be able to get the most out of a trip to Ireland this time of year, there are still a few things you should be aware of.
I think that most visitors to Ireland during the summer months are pleasantly surprised by how sunny the weather can be and the amount of things to do. Yet, there are still plenty of visitors that miss out on the very best the country has to offer, or the get caught unawares by things most locals avoid.
The Pros and Cons of Visiting Ireland in August
You will be able to see some of the sunniest days of the year in Ireland this month. Also, there will be plenty of opportunities for you to get out and into the most scenic parts of the country. The summer months are the time of year when locals really like to embrace their home and culture.
However, I think there are a few things you should consider before you plan a trip this month. While you might be able to see some beautiful sights, there is always the opportunity for wind and rain. You also will not be the only person to visit Ireland this month, so don’t come here in August to avoid the crowds.
|Festivals and Events
The Pros of Visiting Ireland in August
- Good Weather: August is part of our summer here in Ireland, and you’re likely to experience warmer (not hot) weather, compared to other months. This means you will see less rain and more sunny days, making it easier to explore outdoor sights and activities.
- Festivals and Events: We have plenty of cultural and music festivals during the summer months. In August, you can expect events like the Rose of Tralee, Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann (an Irish music festival), and the Puck Fair. These events offer a glimpse into unique aspects of Irish culture.
- Long Days: August is a time of year when we experience long daylight hours, often with sunrise around 5:30am and sunset after 9pm. This means more time to explore and enjoy the stunning Irish landscapes, historic sites, and vibrant cities.
The Cons of Visiting Ireland in August
- Tourist Crowds: Since August is a peak tourist season, popular attractions like the Cliffs of Moher, Ring of Kerry or Dublin’s city center can become crowded. This means longer waiting times for attractions. But school will be out, meaning transport options might be less crowded.
- Higher Prices: With the influx of tourists in August, prices for accommodation, flights, and sometimes even attractions will probably increase. You may need to budget more for your trip during this peak season.
- Variable Weather: Despite being summer, the weather in Ireland can still be unpredictable. It’s not uncommon to experience a sunny morning followed by an afternoon shower. Therefore, even though the weather is generally better in August, it’s essential to pack for all conditions.
The Weather in Ireland in August
August is one of the hottest and sunniest months in Ireland. I like to think that people who come to Ireland this time of year will have to be more aware of the sun than the rain. But unfortunately, that’s not always the case!
The average temperature in Ireland during August will be between 14°C and 17°C (58°F – 60°F), but it will often feel much warmer. I nearly got heatstroke giving tours in Dublin during the heatwave of 2022. The temperatures got as high as 30°C.
This was much less than our neighbors however. There were plenty of other countries in Europe that experienced much higher temperatures than us. In Britain, temperatures got as high as 40°C.
So, if you are looking for a way to get out of extreme heat at home, while still being able to see the sunshine, then consider coming to Ireland in August.
One important thing to remember about coming to Ireland, even during the summer, is that the rain is never far away. It will be possible for that sunny morning to turn into a wet afternoon. Make sure to plan for as many eventualities as you possibly can.
The weather in Ireland is reliably unreliable. If you want to learn more about the Irish weather, I have a full guide to it, linked here.
What to Pack for Ireland in August
When it comes to packing for your trip to Ireland, there are certain things you need to focus on this time of year. While your packing list to Ireland is going to be pretty much the same, regardless of the time you visit, here is what I think you should focus on:
- Layers: I always talk about layering for your trips to Ireland and I always will. This remains the most important piece of information when it comes to what to pack for your trip to Ireland. With unpredictable weather, going from sunny to rainy, you will need to layer up throughout the day.
- Comfortable Shoes: This is another thing I always go on about. Maybe its just because I’m getting older, or because I walk a lot for work, but I think good shoes are always a good investment. If the ones you get for your trip to Ireland are also waterproof, then all the better.
- Waterproof Outer Layer: Most people who come to Ireland think that if they just bring an umbrella they’ll be fine. This couldn’t be further from the truth. If the Irish wind doesn’t destroy the umbrella, then it’ll make the rain come in, underneath it!
- Sunscreen: I know that plenty of people don’t think the sun will actually damage them in Ireland, but they’re wrong. The sun is just as likely to damage you here as anywhere else, so please take the necessary precautions when it comes to skincare and sun protection.
- Reusable Water Bottle: I swear by these, I know that plenty of people might not like paying the up-front cost of a reusable bottle, but they are totally worth it. You are going to save more money in the long-run, help the environment and keep your water cooler for longer. There will be plenty of places to refill them throughout the country.
Events and Things to Do in Ireland in August
Now that you’re here in Ireland and know what to expect, lets finally talk about some of the fun things to can do here this time of year. Bare in mind that this list is far from complete. I just wanted to give you an idea about what’s on offer.
This literally means “music festival” in the Irish language (Pronounced: “Flah Kyowl“). It is held annually in Ireland for a week at the beginning of August, in the same place for 2 years in a row. In 2022, the Fleadh returned to its home in the town of Mullingar for the first time since this festival was started in the 1960s.
Every year, the best traditional Irish musicians, dancers and singers come to a small town in Ireland from all over the world. When you head to the Fleadh, you will be able to meet some of the most passionate musicians on the planet.
You will also be able to get a first-hand experience with the never-static Irish culture. This definitely is something worth seeing if you have any interest in traditional Irish music, dance or Irish culture in general.
The Puck Fair
This is one of the strangest traditions in all of Ireland. Every year, in the small village of Killorglin, near Killarney in County Kerry, a goat is crowned king of the community.
I really don’t know what more to say on the matter than that!
This has been a local tradition in this small Irish hamlet going back centuries. There are no historical records of this event starting and there likely never will be any found.
All that being said, this is one of the most unique and interesting local traditions found anywhere in the world. You will be able to see it yourself and enjoy the passionate locals as they crown their new “king” for the year.
Explore Irish Nature
I know this is what most of you will want to see. The beautiful Irish countryside will definitely look well in August. The heather and gorse bushes will be blooming all throughout the summer months, offering up beautiful shades of purple and yellow.
I have to say that August is one of the best times of the year to get out and see the Irish countryside. There will also be plenty of music festivals set outside of cities, so if you want to listen to some great modern acts, you can too!
Here are some of my favorite day trips out of Dublin, into the Irish countryside, by public transport. These are all destinations that locals will flock to in August.
Where to Visit in Ireland in August
There are too many places that I think you should visit when you come to Ireland. I just want to talk about some of my favorite places to be in during the summer months:
There is always something to do in Ireland’s capitol, no matter what time of the year you’re here. During the summer months, the streets and laneways will be heaving with people. They will either be dining outdoors or having a quiet pint with friends after work.
The parks will be packed during the day and you will be able to see locals, finally, enjoying sunshine in their hometown.
Summer is one of the best times in Ireland in general, but Dublin really has a great buzz this time of year. I know that many of the hotels will be more expensive, but you will still be able to see the city at its best and most vibrant at the height of the summer season.
Killarney is one of the best places to visit in Ireland in general, but especially if you want to explore the South West. Located in the heart of Co. Kerry, right next to Killarney National Park, this is a great place to base yourself if you want to explore the Ring of Kerry.
There are plenty of other things to check out nearby, from the aforementioned National Park to neighboring towns and communities. If you want to see Dingle or Beara, then Killarney is also a great place to stay.
One of the closest towns to Killarney is Killorglin, where the Puck Fair is held. So if you want to see the new “King Puck” this year, then Killarney is a great place to get ready before the coronation.
Galway has always been one of the most beloved places in all of Ireland. I suspect that even a quick stay here will wind up being a highlight of your whole trip to Ireland. This medieval town has some of the best pubs and restaurants in all of Ireland – and quite possibly Western Europe!
Even just a short walk from the train/ bus stations to the coast will bring you by countless musicians, buskers, locals and others. This town has been a bastion of Irish art, culture and music for generations.
If you don’t like Galway, you won’t like anywhere!
FAQs About Ireland in August
Here are some questions that I have often been asked about visiting Ireland in August:
What is the weather like in Ireland in August?
August in Ireland typically sees mild weather with temperatures ranging from 15°C to 20°C (59°F to 68°F). However, the weather can be unpredictable, with the possibility of both sunny days and rain showers.
Do I need to book accommodations and attractions in advance for August?
Given that August is a popular time for tourism in Ireland, it is recommended to book accommodations and tickets for popular attractions in advance to ensure availability.
What kind of clothing should I pack for Ireland in August?
It’s best to pack layers that can accommodate both warm and cooler weather. Don’t forget a waterproof jacket, sturdy walking shoes, a hat, sunglasses, and sunscreen.