Seldom will you visit a country with such an interesting history. Take time to experience this moving past in many of the interesting locations you will visit while in Ireland. Throughout the country you will see ancient historical sites such as Dolmens, Passage Graves, Monastic settlements, Powerful Cathedrals and Norman Castles to name but a few.
To retrace the history of Ireland it should be divided into the following eras:
» Prehistoric Times
Before the arrival of the Celtic Tribes from the Continent of Europe, Ireland was populated by an indigenous people. Architectural remains of these people can be found in the Dolmens, Prehistoric Passage graves such as Newgrange, where you can see one of the oldest standing buildings in the world. Visit one of Irelands promontory stone forts on the Aran Islands, or see one of the early lake settlements (Crannogs) and other fine remains.
Life and Craft in Ireland was changed by the arrival of the Celtic Tribes from Europe. This resulted in a new language, new techniques, customs and traditions. Ireland was soon to become the centre of the Celtic nations (Wales, Scotland, Brittany and Galicia).
Christianity in Ireland
Christianity was the next most important change in Irish history. This was due to the arrival of the patron saint of Ireland Saint Patrick. He was responsible for converting the whole country to Christianity. This was the basis for the creation of the many Monastic settlements as you can see today in Glendalough, Clonmacnoise, and others with their unique round towers, High Crosses, ancient Churches and splendid Cathedrals. It was from these settlements that Irish Missionaries set out to Christianize Europe.
Norman Arrival and Domination
The peaceful life in Ireland was interrupted by the invasions of the Viking tribes and later by a huge Norman invasion from England in 1171 and this English domination lasted through the centuries until Irish independence in 1922. This part of history was characterized by many revolutions, uprisings and battles including The invasion of the Spanish Armada at Kinsale, The Battle of the Boyne, the French Invasion at Killala Bay, and ultimately in the famous Easter Rising in 1916 which led to the Anglo Irish agreement in 1921/1922 and Irish independence.
Since Ireland obtained Independence from Great Britain, it has remained a neutral country. This was notably reflected in Irelands neutrality during World War II.
Ireland is now a member of the UN and a full member of the European Union. In recent years, it had enjoyed unprecedented prosperity, with economic growth outpacing its European partners. This boom got underway in earnest in the 1990s when the country benefited greatly from its membership of the European Union, both by financial aid and also by inward investment by companies wishing to gain access to European markets, attracted by tax breaks and an educated work force.
Ireland is a wonderful destination whether for business or pleasure or a combination of both. A constantly evolving country, many things are changing, mostly for the better, but also many things remain the same. The breathtaking scenery, the history and culture, the magic, laughter and fun of the people. Add to this, the quality of hotels, the fine cuisine, along with well planned and executed travel plans and your clients are guaranteed to have the most wonderful trip imaginable.
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