Every country on the planet has its own well-worn traditions and customary quirks when it comes to summer – and Ireland is certainly no different. For a nation that’s more readily associated with windswept days and showery weather, it marks a time when we leave the raingear behind and embrace everything that warm days and long nights have to offer.
Some of this, of course, will be entirely familiar; the barbecues, for example, look a whole lot like the ones seen all over the world. But there are some areas in which Ireland has found its own unique ways of making summer its own. And so, it’s with that in mind that we’ve prepared a step-by-step guide to spending summer like the Irish…
Early tea time
The above is not a typo; while Ireland is packed with golf enthusiasts, who’ll most certainly be lining up at golf tee boxes from courses Portrush to Ballybunion, we’re talking about a trusty cup of tea – and in fact, what will be the first of many.
By some miracle of science, the beverage that warms the heart and soul during the cold winter months is the very same one that provides the greatest refreshment on a hot summer’s day. That’s why, when the temperatures rise and hydration becomes all-important, the click of a kettle is a highly necessary part of the day.
So, before you go anywhere, do anything, or see anyone on a summer’s morning, have a cuppa. Sure, there’s debate about loose leaves versus bags, or whether you use sugar and cream, but there’s no argument when it comes to the main point; you simply cannot beat a good cup of tea.
Dress to impress
Summer style can be a tricky thing – and there’s nothing like a balmy day to prompt some barmy choices in the wardrobe department! From threadbare tees to sports gear first worn in another century, there’s plenty of ways to get it wrong when it comes to finding the right gear for a scorching day! You’ll spot the fashion forward easily, as they’re the ones who remembered to update their t-shirt collection before short-sleeves season rolled around!
And while baseball caps are something of an all-year-round event in the US and elsewhere, it’s during the summer months that the Irish tend to jump on board. So, shape your peak and get ready to hit the road – because Irish summers are all about what’s happening outside!
If you’ve ever wondered how a little country like Ireland always seems to punch above its weight in world sport, then a wander around the country in the summertime is likely to provide a few clues. From impromptu rugby games on the beach to up soccer matches in the street, there’s a whole world of sporting action unfolding daily.
It changes by geography, too; find the right country road in Cork and you might spot the local obsession of road bowling, while in Kilkenny it’s almost obligatory to tote a hurley wherever you go. The west coast of the country is a paradise for surfers, while regions like the Ring of Kerry and the Wicklow Mountains will draw hikers and hillwalkers from far and wide.
Throw in the cyclists and the sea swimmers, the anglers and the joggers, and just about everything else you can imagine, and you’re looking at a country where every day is sports day. So, choose your activity – and goodness knows, you’re spoiled for choice! – and get moving…
Dine and dash
With so much to do, nobody’s up for slaving away in the kitchen – so pack that picnic basket well. A delicious chunk of homemade brown bread (smeared liberally with butter and jam, obviously) will fuel anybody up, while the generations that swear by the traditional Irish crisp (chips) sandwich can’t all be wrong!
If something more substantial is in order, then it’s not uncommon to lift things up several notches; while the casual BBQ has its place, so too does a garden party that’d put Jay Gatsby to shame! Setting the table, grabbing the good glassware, and pulling out all the stops to create an evening to remember for family and friends is what summer evenings are all about.
And with daylight stretching well past 10pm, there’s all the more time to enjoy what you love, which in Ireland means ceol agus craic – or, in English, music and, well, craic! Sing-alongs and party games, or even traditional music sessions, are the very best ways to welcome darkness finally falling – which is also a good indicator that it’s time for a few pints of the black stuff, too…so get the Guinness at the ready!
Anywhere but home
After all of that, who’d want to lock themselves away in a bedroom? Nope – it’s time to sleep under the stars! With wide-open spaces rarely more than a stone’s throw away, the favourable weather makes it the perfect occasion to whip out the camping supplies and kip (sleep) in the great wide open.
All set for the season
There you have it: the dawn-to-dusk guide to enjoying summer the Irish way! And no matter what part stands out the most – whether the sporting endeavours, the al fresco celebrations, or the nights spent savouring your surroundings – you’re sure to find the perfect gift for every occasion and every taste at Carrolls Irish Gifts.
From clothing and accessories to food and drink, and rugby balls to picnic blankets, our carefully selected range represents the very finest that Ireland has to offer – and makes Carrolls the ideal destination when it comes to making sure you’re summer-ready.
What’s more, we ship worldwide – so even if your nearest and dearest aren’t close by, you can still send your warmest summer wishes to their door. Visit for more Gifts & Souvenirs options
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