Gay-Friendly Hot Spots Ireland

According to several different in-the-know sources, there are quite a lot of incredible, gay-friendly vacation hotspots around the world.  Ireland is one of them.  In fact, Jason Heidemann associate editor of Orbitz included the “Emerald Isle” on his declared list of “10 Hottest Gay Destinations of 2016”.

For those readers who have never been to the U.K., Ireland, the second-largest of the famed British Isles, is an island in the north Atlantic Ocean.  The North Channel, the Irish Sea and St. George’s Channel to the east separates it from Great Britain.

With a population of 6.4 million, Ireland has a political divide.  There is Ireland (known to some as the Republic of Ireland) which consists of five-sixths of the isle and Northern Ireland which (politically speaking) is part of the U.K. or United Kingdom.  This covers the remaining one-sixth of the island in the northeast.

While it is true that Northern Ireland was indeed infamous for a significant amount of “civil unrest” that occurred from late in the 1960s until some time in the 1990s, don’t worry.  Things are different now.  This all came to a close after the establishment of a political agreement in 1998.

Heidemann was impressed by Ireland’s geography which consists of low-lying mountains which surround a central plain, a number of navigable rivers that extend inland and lush vegetation which is due to a moderated, mild yet fluid oceanic climate which generally free of extreme temperatures.  In general, the winters are milder than what one would expect, summers are cooler than those in Continental Europe and rain and clouds are in no short supply.

He believes that both gay and heterosexual tourists would enjoy a drive around the countryside to enjoy the lush green landscape.  Additionally, 11 percent of the island is covered in thick woodlands.

If you like cute and cuddly you might be in luck here too.  Ireland reportedly has 26 extant mammal species.  

The culture of Ireland has significantly influenced numerous other cultures in different ways.  Irish literature has been especially influential on the world.  Their games, language and music have become entwined with Western culture.  The Irish culture also shares much with that of Great Britain including (but not limited to) the English language, football (soccer), golf, horse racing and rugby.

While there is a large Catholic population in Ireland, their attitudes towards members of the LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) community are reportedly the most liberal anywhere in the world.  Homosexuality was officially decriminalized in 1993.  Heidemann reports that Ireland’s large cities like Cork and Dublin have a noteworthy out and lively social scene for lesbians and gay men that is highlighted by gay-friendly bars, hotels, nightclubs and saunas.

More importantly, as of May 22, 2015 the Constitution of Ireland was amended to state that a marriage is officially recognized regardless of the gender of the partners.  Essentially, same-sex marriage was thus legalized in Ireland.  Since legal same-sex marriages did not actually get off the ground until November of last year, this year is actually the first full year of same-sex marriage or “marriage equality” in the “Emerald Isle”.  It certainly gives new meaning to the phrase “Go green” now, doesn’t it?

(All images are courtesy of the original owners unless otherwise indicated.) 

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