Monday, January 30, 2012

Foot-tapping, merry making good time - Top 10 2012 Festivals in Ireland

From opera to oysters – festivals in Ireland cover a multitude of activities, from literary pursuits at the Dublin Book Festival to the gems of the silver screen at the Jameson Dublin International Film Festival. Let 2012 be the year you find your perfect festival. Join in the festivities on your self-drive vacation to Ireland with Celtic Tours World Vacations or bring your friends and family on a group vacation to Ireland for a foot-tapping, merry-making good time!

Titanic, Cobh, April
2012 marks the 100th anniversary of the Titanic’s maiden voyage. Cobh, then Queenstown, was the Titanic’s last port of call. 123 passengers boarded the magnificent vessel in a bid to journey to the new world. For the last century the world has been intrigued with the story of the largest passenger liner at the time and the vessel that many thought was unsinkable.

Waterford Festival and Food – April
This annual festival has become synonymous with fabulous food, fantastic family fun, magical music and much more

Lisdoonvarna Matchmaking Festival, Co Clare, September – October
Lisdoonvarna Matchmaking Festival is Europe's largest singles event, with a whole month of dancing and craic starting at 12 noon til late into the night. The festival is Europe's largest singles event. There are five big weekends of dancing and craic. The dancing also starts at the town hall at 12 noon every day during the month of September and continues all over town til late. You can see Willie Daly one of Ireland’s oldest matchmakers at the matchmaker bar every weekend. If its craic and dancing you want Lisdoonaarna is not to be missed.

Wexford Festival Opera, October 24 – November 4, 2012
Recognised by the Frommers Guide as 'one of the best small festivals in the world' Wexford Festival Opera presents an annual trio of rarely performed operas in the unique atmosphere of Wexford Town.

Beamish Cork Folk Festival, October 04 -04, 2012
The Cork Folk Festival has been taking place annually since 1979 at 45 locations throughout the City of Cork. Throughout the five day festival, many of the events are free and audiences can sample everything from set to sean nós dancing, bluegrass to cajun music and singers' club to singer songwriters. The highlight of the festival takes place on Grand Parade, where up to 10,000 dancers gather to take part in Ireland’s largest open air céilí.

Galway Arts Festival, July 16 -29, 2012
Regarded as one of Europe's key cultural events, Galway Arts Festival is an international celebration of the performing and visual arts. Each year over 100,000 people attend the Galway Arts Festival, with hundreds of writers, artists, performers and musicians creating theatre, spectacle, street art, music, comedy, literature and music to produce a stunning fortnight of cultural activity and celebration. Galway Arts Festival is the defining cultural expression of Galway and is at the heart of all aspects life in the city.

Galway International Oyster & Seafood Festival, September 28 – 30, 2012
Each September, Galway City comes alive with seafood & oysters as it celebrates the Galway International Oyster & Seafood Festival, the most internationally recognised food festival in Ireland and the world's longest running International Oyster Festival. Throughout the festival, a host of tantalising events to whet your appetite will take place, including; a seafood trail in some of Galway city’s finest restaurants, Taste of the Sea/Blas na Mara - showcasing Galway's seafood heroes, the National Oyster Opening Championship, The Food village at The Festival Marquee, the World Oyster Opening Championship, a Mardi Gras event through the streets of Galway and the Festival Finale with family activities, kids fancy dress, live music, cooking demonstrations, Best Hot Oyster Dish challenge, Irish Coffee making and jive & jazz.

Waterford Spraoi Festival, August 2 -5, 2012

Spraoi, pronounced spree, is the Irish word for fun, exuberance and celebration. The Spraoi International Street Arts Festival has been staged in Waterford, Ireland, since 1993. For three days each year residents of this medieval city take to the streets and enjoy an international programme of street arts and spectacle. The festival is staged on August Bank Holiday Weekend, always marked by the first Monday in August. Waterford’s narrow medieval streets, squares, quays and historic buildings provide an atmospheric backdrop to Spraoi’s celebration of contemporary performance culture. The majority of the events are free and suitable for all ages. Performers and musicians from around the world feature in the Spraoi programme each year. The festival programme features the Irish Premeiers of International work. Spraoi also produces its own work for the festival, including The Spraoi Parade.

Dublin Book Festival, November 16 – 18, 2012

Dublin Book Festival brings together the best of Irish publishing, offering a chance for the voices of both established and up and coming authors to be heard. Our poets and authors will gather to celebrate Dublin’s designation as a UNESCO City of Literature. The Dublin Book Festival promises a great line-up within a relaxed and fun environment with something for everyone.

Jameson Dublin International Film Festival, Feb
Jameson Dublin International Film Festival continues its commitment to celebrating film as an art form by presenting over 120 films from the four corners of the globe to the Irish Audience. The festival is a citywide event that takes place in all of the Dublin City Centre Cinemas including Cineworld, The Savoy, Screen, Irish Film Institute and Light House Cinema in Smithfield. The majority of films shown at the film festival are Irish premieres, and for some of the films shown, the festival represents the only public screening that will take place in Ireland.

2012 is here! Let this be the year you find your perfect festival. See that amazing performance, run up that mountain, learn something new or round up your pals for a city break with a difference - go on - catch some festival fever! Check out the Festival & Event Calendar provided by Discover Ireland: then start planning your festival self-drive vacation to Ireland with Celtic Tours World Vacations today!

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