Not many people know this but...


Technological Centre

Ireland is home to 8 of the top 10 global technology companies, 8 of the top 10 pharmaceutical companies, 15 of the top 25 medical devices firms and more than 50% of the world's leading financial services firms

Tailteann Games

Ireland has had its own Olympics since the Bronze Age, called the Tailteann Games

Creation of Duty Free

Shannon airport in Co. Clare became the world’s first duty-free airport in 1947

Arthur's Stout

The world famous Guinness beer brand is from Ireland, it originated in the Dublin brewery of Arthur Guinness and was once the largest brewery in the world (from 1914), and remains the largest brewer of stout in the world

Oldest Maternity Hospital

Founded in 1745, the Rotunda Hospital in Dublin is the world's oldest continuously operating maternity hospital

Neutral State

Ireland is a neutral state and is not a member of N.A.T.O.

World of Records

The “Guinness Book of World Records” was created by Guinness brewery employees. The book was a result of an argument over the identity of the fastest game bird in Europe

First Commuter

The world's first suburban commuter railway opened between Dublin and Dun Laoghaire in 1834 (two years before the London and Greenwich Railway)

Pig and Sheep Blood

Crubeens and drisheen are Irish delicacies. Crubeens are pigs’ trotters and drisheen is a sausage of pig and sheep blood

Tricolours of Peace

The flag of Ireland (designed in 1848) is a historical political statement. The green represents Irish Catholics, the orange represents the island's Protestants, and the white represents the hope that the two congregations will be reconciled to live together in peace

City of Literature

In July 2010, Dublin was designated UNESCO City of Literature. The accolade recognises the capital's international standing as a city of literary excellence, one of only four in the world

Handel's Messiah

Handel’s “Messiah” premiered in the Dublin in 1742 and the chair Handel sat on during the concert is now located at the Dublin Writers Museum on Parnell Street

Zinc Mines

Ireland is home to Europe’s largest Zinc mine, the Tara Mine near Navan, County Meath.

Old Brehon Laws

Couples in Ireland could marry legally on St. Brigid's Day (February 1st) in Teltown, County Meath, as recently as the 1920’s by simply walking towards each other. If the marriage failed, they could "divorce'" by walking away from each other at the same spot, on St. Brigid’s day the following year. The custom was a holdover from old Irish Brehon laws, which allowed temporary marriage contracts

Bad Blood

Bram Stoker, the author of Dracula was born in Clontarf district of the city. Some claim that the title of his famous book comes from two Irish words “Droch Ola” meaning Bad Blood!

Highest Cliffs

At a height of 688 metres above the Atlantic Ocean, Croaghaun (on Achill Island) are the second highest cliffs in Europe - after Cape Enniberg in the Faroe Islands

Discovering America

An Irish monk named Saint Brendan is said to have discovered America 1,000 years before Columbus

Paddy's Day

Saint Patrick's Day is Ireland’s official national holiday. The 17th of March holiday is celebrated in Ireland and also embraced by many other countries around the world

Matter from Atoms

Robert Boyle (1627-1691) born in Lismore, County Offaly is considered a founder of modern chemistry. His 1661 book, the Sceptical Chymist outlined the theory that matter was made of atoms

Most Popular Liqueur

Bailey’s Irish Cream which was launched in Ireland in the early seventies is now the most popular liqueur in the world

Clash of the Ash

Gaelic football and hurling are traditional sports of Ireland and remain the most popular sports in the country

3rd Largest Walled Park

Phoenix Park in Dublin is the third largest walled city parks in Europe after La Mandria in Venaria Reale (Turin) and Richmond Park in London. It covers 707 hectares (1,750 acres)

Mandatory Retirement

Up until 1973, many women employed in the public service faced mandatory retirement once they got married

Why the Sky is Blue

Physicist John Tyndall (1820-1893) was born in Co. Carlow, Ireland. He was the first to prove the Greenhouse Effect and the first to discover why the sky is blue (Tyndall effect)

Before the Pyramids

The Newgrange passage tomb in County Meath was constructed around 3200 BC, making it more than 600 years older than the Giza Pyramids in Egypt, and 1,000 years older than Stonehenge

Titantic and Oscar

Ireland has created some of the most recognizable objects we know. The RMS Titanic was built in Belfast. The White House was designed by Irish architect James Hoban and the Oscar statuette handed out at the Academy Awards was designed by Irishman Cedric Gibbons

80,000,000 Irish People

There are more Irish people living outside of Ireland than in, it is estimated that over 80 million people of Irish descent live outside Ireland

Longest Tourist Trial

Ireland has the world's longest defined coastal touring route; the Wild Atlantic Way

Longest Placename

The longest place name in Ireland is Muckanaghederdauhaulia, in County Galway

Nation of Redheads

Only 9% of the Irish population are natural redheads

Origin of Boycott

The word Boycott originated in Ireland after landowner Charles Boycott refused to drop his rents. A Boycott took place

Japanese Gardens

The Irish National Stud's Japanese Gardens, designed between 1906 and 1910 by Japanese master horticulturist Tassa Eida, are considered the finest of their kind in Europe. They can be found in County Kildare

Oldest Pub

Irelands oldest pub, Sean’s Bar was founded over 900 years ago

Gaelic Language

The ancestral language of Irish people is Irish Gaelic. Nowadays 1.6 million people claim a self-reported competence in Irish, but only 380,000 fluent speakers remain

Eurovision Record

Ireland has won the Eurovision Song Contest seven times (in 1970, 1980, 1987, 1992, 1993, 1994 and 1996), more than any other country.