Summer is often the most popular time to travel. Some visitors may hear this and baulk at visiting Ireland during the “busy season”, but as Ireland is a rural country with plenty of wild corners, no matter when you visit, you’ll be able to get away from the crowds and spend time in the stunning nature of the Emerald Isle.
With the longest day of the year in June, mid-summer offers long, sunny days, great food, ideal wildlife-spotting opportunities and more enticing reasons to visit in June. Keep reading to find out more.
June 21st is the longest day of the year and is a significant day on the Celtic calendar. It was an important day for the ancient people of Ireland, particularly during the Neolithic period and subsequent ages. Enormous stone monuments were impressively built and painstakingly aligned with the Summer Solstice. On the summer solstice day, the sun shines into monuments across the country, lighting up the chambers inside (one great example is Carrowkeel in Co. Sligo – learn more here).
Celebrating the summer solstice is back in vogue. On the 21st, ancient spots across Ireland come alive with visitors who travel to these spots specifically to watch the sunset on the longest day of the year – carrying on a 5,000-year-old tradition over the same landscapes once viewed by our ancestors. Read more about solstices in Ireland below.
With an average of 17 glorious hours of sunshine daily, June embodies “long summer days.” This leaves plenty of time for adventuring, followed by long, slow evenings perfect for a post-adventure pint or gin.
June is also one of the driest months, with some of the highest average temperatures. Expect around 40-52 mm (1.5-2 in) of rain in June and an average high temperature of 18°C or 64°F, with an average low of 11°C or 52°F.
For those who want to make the most of long summer days, early mornings, and lingering sunsets, June is the perfect time to visit Ireland.
With more than 2,000 km of coastline along Ireland’s Wild Atlantic Way, it’s safe to say you’ll spend a lot of time along the coast, no matter which trip you choose.
Of course, you can go to the beach any time of year. Locals still enjoy brisk February beach strolls to breathe the fresh, salty air. But for most people, the coastlines and beaches are best enjoyed in summer when the weather is generally at its best.
If you dream of visiting islands, summer is generally the best time for boat crossings. Boats and ferries are weather dependent all year round, but the likelihood of island hopping is strong in June. If you yearn to climb the rough stone steps carved by medieval monks on Skellig Michael or walk the cliffs and tiny communities of the Aran Islands, join one of our island-hopping tours this summer.
Agriculture in Ireland is often only considered in terms of livestock – the famous Irish sheep and cows. But in truth, Ireland’s local agriculture goes beyond our hoofed herds.
June is an excellent time of year for anyone who loves berries, with plenty in season over the summer (and into the fall too). Taste black and red currants, plump Wexford strawberries, wild raspberries, and other juicy delicacies. Other delicious in-season greenery are beans, beetroot, sweet peas, and various salads.
It’s also an ideal time to taste the fruits of the sea. Keep an out for in-season fish such as bream, flounder, haddock, hake, John Dory, lobster, plaice, and sole.
Or taste Ireland’s local farmhouse cheeses, which have been coming into vogue these past few years. Not sure which cheesy delight is for you? Have a look at our guide to Irish cheeses for some dairy inspiration?
Summertime is perfect for sipping Ireland’s delicious brews. There’s nothing better than concluding an exhilarating day on the hills with a crisp gin and tonic or a refreshing pint.
While Guinness reigns supreme (and don’t get us wrong, Guinness is delicious), there are a number of craft beer breweries and craft distilleries springing up all over Ireland. Part of an up-and-coming trend that focuses on local cuisine, pubs are increasingly adding local craft brews to their offerings.
What’s available on tap will depend on which region you’re currently visiting, but craft beer pubs offer a larger range, and off-licenses carry craft brews from all over Ireland (and further afield) if you’re looking for something specific.
So the big question is – which beer will you try first? Use our interactive beer matching tool below to match your tastes and preferences with Irish craft beers.
In the mood for a cocktail? Read through our guide to Irish gin to help you choose which gin you’ll put in your cocktail on your summer trip to Ireland.
June is generally the final month that you can adequately expect to see puffins in Ireland, though it’s important to keep in mind that birds don’t keep to a schedule and can arrive or leave earlier or later than expected. But if your goal is to spot puffins, June is a good time to go.
For aspirant puffin enthusiasts, head to Rathlin Island along the Causeway Coast in Northern Ireland or Skellig Michael island off the coast of Kerry in the southwest for the best chance to spot them (though they can flock to other west coast places too, like the Cliffs of Moher, Aran Islands, Clare Island and others on occasion). Learn more about puffins in Ireland here.
June is a good time of year to spot seals, too, as this is prime pupping season. Common seals come ashore to give birth and nurse their young, so coastal visitors should keep their eyes on the rocks for these friendly creatures. Other undersea animals make an appearance in June – check out our marine wildlife article for more info.
In general, bird-watching opportunities are quite good in June. There are a number of bird-watching hotspots but generally, the coast and islands of Ireland offer plenty of chances to spot feathered friends. Learn more about places to watch for birds in Ireland here.
Most often, flowers are thought of as spring bounties. However, the Irish climate is mild and supports wildflowers throughout spring and summer. While some blossoms bloom earlier, like primroses or wild bluebells, others wait until June and July to appear in full colour.
If you’re keen to immerse yourself in Ireland’s plein-air bouquet of wildflowers, look no further than the seemingly barren landscapes of the Burren in Co. Clare. Though a lunar-esque rocky terrain at first glance, look closer: erupting from the crags is a veritable display of diverse wildflowers. According to conservation charity Burrenbeo, they estimate that 70% of Ireland’s 900 native species live in the Burren. (Want more detail about individual flower species in the Burren? Read the Burrenbeo guide here.)
Learn about visiting in June and the Irish summer climate in our guide to Irish summer.
Jun 22, 2024
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