July is well into the high season for tourism in Ireland. There will be plenty of things for you to see and do in Ireland this time of year, but you definitely won’t be the only person here. In this article, I want to make sure you can get the most out of your time in Ireland in July
I personally love the atmosphere of Ireland during the summer months. The locals are usually a lot happier, there are plenty of visitors about and the good weather means that we can, finally, enjoy the Irish countryside. But there are still a few things to look out for when you’re here in July…
The Pros and Cons of Visiting Ireland in July
July is one of the most popular times for visitors to come to Ireland throughout the year and you can see why. The days will be long, the countryside will be lush and green but it still won’t be as hot and unpleasant as many other parts of Europe.
Having said that, there are plenty of things I think you should keep in mind when planning a visit to Ireland in July. Here are my top pros and cons for visiting Ireland this month:
|Outdoor Festivals/ Activities
The Pros of Visiting Ireland in July
- Warmest Month: July is usually one of the warmest months in Ireland, with temperatures ranging between 15°C to 20°C (59°F to 68°F). While this might not seem too warm, with the humid climate, it may feel hotter. In July, you will definitely need to wear sun protection in Ireland!
- Longer Days: July is one of the sunniest months in Ireland, with an average of about 17 hours of daylight every day. The sun will rise as early as 5am and set as late as 10pm. In fact, while you’re here, you might not see the sun properly set at all.
- Outdoor Festivals/ Activities: All of this means that July is one of the best months in the year for you to take part in any outdoor events or activities in Ireland. There are so many to choose from, so I will go into more detail later in this article.
The Cons of Visiting Ireland in July
- Tourist Crowds: One of the biggest downsides to Ireland in July has to be the crowds. With all of the sunshine comes plenty of tourists. So if you wanted to experience the quieter side of Irish life, then you should probably come at a different time in the year.
- Higher Prices: The bigger crowds mean that prices are going to be higher for pretty much everything in Ireland in July. The average cost of a week’s vacation for a family of 4 this time of year is around €2,500 – €4,000, though this can vary a lot. Here is my guide on how expensive Dublin is.
- Unpredictable Weather: I know I said that July has some of the best weather in Ireland, but this is still Ireland. You never really know how the weather is going to go, especially in the west. Make sure to pack properly for the Irish weather, no matter the time of year – but more on that further down.
The Irish Weather in July
I have a full guide to the Irish weather linked here. But I still think its worth going over a few key points about the Irish weather in July.
July is one of the warmest months of the year in Ireland, with average temperatures of around 14.5°C – 16°C (58°F – 60°F). It usually feels like its in the mid 20°’sC this time of year.
The warmer temperatures, combined with the longer days mean that you should take actions to protect yourself from the sun. Last July, while giving a walking tour in Dublin, I nearly passed out from heatstroke. Please don’t underestimate the danger of the heat, no matter where you are.
This is also the time of year when heatwaves have been getting more common. Make sure to keep an eye on them with the Irish weather service.
As mentioned before, this is still Ireland. Even if the weather is sunny and there is no rain on the forecast, that doesn’t mean things will stay that way. The weather in Ireland is highly changeable and we will often get 4 seasons in a day.
While you’re less likely to see all of our seasons in July, if the weather does suddenly change, you’re more likely to be caught out in it. Make sure to prepare, as best you can, for more than one eventuality when coming to Ireland in the summer months.
What to Pack for Ireland in July
If you want my full guide on what to pack for Ireland, you can find that linked here. Today, I just want to go over some of the essentials I think you should bring with you when you’re travelling to Ireland in July:
- Lightweight, breathable clothing: Layer, layer, layer. This is the most repeated piece of advice when it comes to packing for any trip to Ireland and with good reason! The weather will change a lot, even at the height of summer. Make sure to bring enough, light, layers to stay comfortable.
- Jumpers (sweaters)/ light jackets: One of the best ways to do this is with a nice jumper (sweater). The Aran Jumpers made famous by the Clancy Brothers can be worn in Ireland at any time of the year! They will be especially useful at night, when it gets a lot cooler.
- Waterproof Outerwear: This is the most important later that you should bring. In the summer, you can definitely get away with a lightweight outer layer. I have already spoken about some of my favorite outer layers, compared to umbrellas, here.
- Comfortable Shoes: Since I have become a tour guide, I have become such a fanatic about good shoes. There are some great options when it comes to footwear for Ireland. You don’t really need to overthink it, but make sure to bring at least a couple of comfortable shoes for your trip.
- Sun Protection: I bet you didn’t think that you would really need to pay attention to sun protection for a trip to Ireland, but you really should. This is the time of year when we are prone to heatwaves, even when there is plenty of cloud cover. Please protect yourself from the sun in Ireland.
- Insect Repellant: If you are travelling throughout the countryside, you will likely find yourself eaten alive by all the midges. While they are ultimately harmless, they are one of the most annoying things about Ireland. Mild insect repellent should work.
Events and Things To Do in Ireland in July
There are plenty of things to see and do all over Ireland this month. There is far too much for me to go into in just one article. However, I just want to go over some of the most exciting things that you might want to check out while you’re here.
Pronounced either “Croke Patrick” or “Crowe Patrick”, this is a mountain in the beautiful western county of Mayo. Supposedly St. Patrick himself spent 40 days and 40 nights fasting on this mountain in the year 441. These days pilgrims climb the peak every year in July, often in their bare feet!
You definitely don’t have to climb this mountain in your bare feet. But, you can still experience this ancient Irish tradition today. You can find people from all over the world also making this pilgrimage, its not just for people of the Catholic faith.
If you want to learn more about it, you can find details here.
Explore the National Parks of Ireland
This is the time of year to get out and see some Irish wilderness. There are 6 national parks in Ireland and some of them are home to truly unique and wonderful nature, not found anywhere else in the world.
Most of our national parks are located in remote areas of the west of Ireland. You can see some of the last properly wild areas of the country in our national parks and I cannot recommend them highly enough.
Even if you are staying in the capitol of Dublin, you will have easy access to Wicklow. Just south of Dublin, this county mostly consists of an ancient mountain range which makes up the park. Parts of it are accessible by public transport from Dublin city center.
The national parks in Ireland are as follows:
Visit Heritage Sites
There are so many different heritage sites in Ireland for you to visit. There are hundreds of castles dotting the countryside, plenty of churches and countless ancient archaeological sites.
If you are looking to visit something ancient, then your best bet has to be Newgrange. This is a 5,000 year-old site that predates both the pyramids in Egypt and Stonehenge in Britain.
Ireland is famous for its countless castles that dot the countryside. If you are interested in visiting some of them I have already spoken about some of the best castles to visit in the following areas (so far):
Where to Visit in Ireland in July
With so much to do in Ireland this month, you might be wondering where to stay. Don’t worry, there are a few places that I think work really well as a base for you to explore the country from, especially this time of year.
Killarney is regarded as the capitol of Irish tourism and it has been popular with visitors from all over the world for well over a hundred years. The likes of Queen Victoria of England and the American actor Jimmy Stewart have both stayed here over the years and loved it.
If you are thinking of staying in Killarney, then this is the time of year to go. Everywhere will be open and ready for action. The local economy has thrived on tourism for generations and they definitely know what they’re doing.
If you choose to visit Killarney this time of year, make sure to stay for a few nights and explore the local national park at the very least!
Dublin is a great place to visit any time of the year and I will always say that. The city has so much to offer visitors that I think you should consider coming here pretty much year-round. While things might be a little more expensive this time of year, you will still be able to do so much.
You definitely won’t be able to see everything in Dublin in just one visit. Also, if you are here in the summer, you will have the chance to see some of the nearby scenery at its best. Make sure to get out of town and see the coast while you’re here.
Galway is one of the most charming and beloved locations in all of Ireland. A veteran guide once told me that “if you don’t like Galway, you don’t like anywhere”. There will always be something on in this small city.
Every time I visit, it feels like there is some new event taking place, from car shows to oyster festivals, there is always be something on.
Galway is cheaper than Dublin and works as a great base to explore the west coast of Ireland. From Galway, you will have easy access to places like the Cliffs of Moher, the Aran Islands and Connemara, to name but a few.
FAQs About Ireland in July
Here are some frequently asked questions I have gotten about visiting Ireland in July:
Is Northern Ireland Good to Visit in July?
Typically no. On the 12th of July every year, there will be marches commemorating the Battle of the Boyne, which took place on this date in the year 1690. The Catholic King James fought the Protestant King William. This weekend still sees a lot of unrest, the rest of the year is perfectly safe however.
Is it Expensive to Visit Ireland in July?
July is considered the peak tourist season in Ireland, which can result in higher prices for accommodations, transportation, and other services. However, by booking in advance and looking for special offers, you can manage your expenses.
Will it Rain a Lot in Ireland in July?
While July is one of the drier months in Ireland, rain is still a possibility. On average, there are 20 to 25 rainy days in Ireland in July. Be prepared for occasional and light rain showers by packing waterproof clothing and an umbrella.