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From Castles to Cliffs: Embark on an Unforgettable Tour of Scotland and Ireland

Are you yearning for adventure, breathtaking landscapes, and a journey through history? Look no further than a tour of Scotland and Ireland. These two countries boast rich cultural heritage, stunning natural beauty, and countless attractions that will leave you spellbound. Whether you’re a history buff, a nature enthusiast, or simply seeking an unforgettable experience, a tour of Scotland and Ireland is sure to deliver. Let’s delve into the highlights of this remarkable journey.

Exploring the Land of Legends

Scotland and Ireland are renowned for their captivating castles, ancient ruins, and legendary tales that have been passed down through generations. Begin your tour in Scotland’s capital city, Edinburgh, where you can explore the majestic Edinburgh Castle perched atop the iconic Castle Rock. Marvel at its imposing architecture and delve into its intriguing history.

Continue your journey to Stirling Castle, situated strategically atop a volcanic crag. This fortress played a crucial role in Scottish history and offers panoramic views of the surrounding countryside. Explore its grand halls and immerse yourself in tales of battles fought by Scottish heroes.

Crossing over to Ireland, make your way to Dublin’s historic Dublin Castle. Originally built as a defensive fortification during the Norman invasion, it evolved into an opulent palace over time. Take a guided tour through its lavish state apartments and discover centuries-old artifacts that chronicle Ireland’s fascinating past.

Natural Wonders at Every Turn

Scotland and Ireland are blessed with some of Mother Nature’s finest creations. From rugged coastlines to misty mountains, prepare to be mesmerized by their breathtaking landscapes.

Begin your exploration with the famous Scottish Highlands. Admire the ethereal beauty of Loch Ness as you traverse its shores or embark on a boat trip in search of the legendary Loch Ness Monster. Continue your journey through Glen Coe, known for its dramatic scenery and rich history.

In Ireland, the Cliffs of Moher are an absolute must-visit. These majestic cliffs rise dramatically from the Atlantic Ocean, offering awe-inspiring views that will leave you speechless. Take a leisurely stroll along the cliff edge or join a guided tour to learn about the geology and wildlife that call this place home.

Whiskey Tasting and Culinary Delights

No tour of Scotland and Ireland is complete without indulging in their world-renowned culinary offerings. Both countries boast a rich tradition of whiskey production, with distilleries that have been perfecting their craft for centuries.

Embark on a whiskey tasting tour in Scotland’s famous Speyside region, home to some of the world’s most iconic distilleries. Learn about the intricate process of whiskey production and savor the distinct flavors that make each distillery unique.

In Ireland, a visit to the Jameson Distillery in Dublin is a must for any whiskey enthusiast. Take part in interactive tasting experiences and discover what sets Irish whiskey apart from its Scottish counterpart.

Beyond whiskey, both countries offer a diverse range of culinary delights. Sample traditional Scottish dishes like haggis or indulge in hearty Irish stews made with locally sourced ingredients. Don’t forget to pair your meal with a pint of Guinness or a dram of fine Scotch whisky for an authentic experience.

Festivals and Traditions

Scotland and Ireland are renowned for their vibrant festivals and lively traditions that celebrate their rich cultural heritage. From Highland games to St. Patrick’s Day festivities, there’s always something happening throughout the year.

If you’re visiting Scotland in August, don’t miss the Edinburgh Festival Fringe – the world’s largest arts festival. Immerse yourself in performances ranging from comedy shows to theatrical productions, showcasing talent from around the globe.

In Ireland, St. Patrick’s Day is celebrated with great pomp and fervor. Join the festivities in Dublin, where the streets come alive with parades, music, and traditional Irish dancing. It’s an experience like no other, filled with joy and camaraderie.

A tour of Scotland and Ireland is a journey through history, nature, culinary delights, and vibrant traditions. From castles to cliffs, these two countries offer a multitude of experiences that will leave you with memories to cherish for a lifetime. Embark on this unforgettable adventure and let yourself be captivated by the beauty and charm of Scotland and Ireland.

This text was generated using a large language model, and select text has been reviewed and moderated for purposes such as readability.


irish culture essay leaving cert

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Leaving Cert Notes and Sample Answers

Leaving Cert English Personal Essay: Irishness #625Lab

“the shoes of irishness fit me well.”, write a personal essay in which you explore your sense of what it means to be irish. (2001).

This is a good essay from a current Leaving Cert student. It’s published under our #625Lab section that reviews the strengths and weaknesses of students’ essays. Note the corrections and comments: these will point you to common mistakes to avoid and help you increase your grade.

Being Irish is a thought playing on everyone’s mind recently. It’s been called into question who we are and what we stand for now in comparison to the ideals of the rebel leaders in the GPO 100 years ago. In the political scheme of things, the general consensus seems to be that we have let them down. The homelessness crisis is deteriorating daily, our health system is woeful and we currently do not even have a government to blame it all on. It’s a far cry from the “romantic Ireland” they envisioned and fought for. Having said that, national pride is at an all time high. The 1916 centenary celebrations have made history buffs of us all as we celebrate this milestone event of our past. Whilst not everyone is in agreement that the Rising was the best way to gain our freedom, it has to be admired as the catalyst for a small nation to break free from seven hundred years of oppression exacted upon us by one of the biggest empires in the world. It beat all the odds. We should not have survived the war of independence and the subsequent civil war, in theory, should have brought the country to its knees, but we were too stubborn to give up, too determined to have our independence and too proud to give up on our country. Our history is the symbol of who we are as a people and we wear these shoes with pride.

Many of our customs have evolved from deeply spiritual and sacred practices from hundreds of years ago. It is a fantastic tribute to our culture that these old traditions are not dying out, but constantly being brought back to life by the younger generations. The session in the pub, the sing song on the way home, the stereotypical “craic agus ceol’” can only be found in Ireland and are appreciated by every generation and nationality who are fortunate enough to experience them first hand. (Hmm, in the introduction the author seemed a little dismissive of the auld craic agus ceol and now all of a sudden it’s a good thing? It would be better to stay consistent throughout the essay.) Every family has that one member who can always be counted on to regale all in attendance with their go to song, usually “Rattling Bog”, or the Gran Aunt who sits by the fire, just waiting to recite “Oh to have a little house…”. Some will need a few drinks up their sleeves, before they launch into a murderous rendition of Ellis Isle, but others, from years of childhood cajoling, know they have a talent and are all too eager to remind everyone of that. The trick is finding the balance between the good, the bad, and the American cousin. (This paragraph is clearly about culture, so it’s a huge improvement on the formless previous paragraph.)

The Irish wake, is one of the best ways to deal with the loss of a loved one. The whole family gathers and grieves together. The best part of the wake is that it truly is a celebration of the person’s life: stories are told, their favourite songs sung, you laugh until your stomach aches and cry until your eyes sting, but it is so wonderfully cathartic to, metaphorically, bring the person back to life, surrounded by family, before it is time to say goodbye for once and for all. The video that recently went viral sums this tradition up. Ger “farmer” Foley passed away in the village of Killorglin, after a long battle with CF. On the night of his funeral, a friend decided to dedicate his version of “Mr Brightside” to the young man. The pub lit up with a huge out pouring of emotion for their friend. Crucially, there were no tears. The song was a celebration of his life, a celebration of the contribution he made to a local festival, a celebration of his life and how he lived it. That’s what a funeral should be and that’s what an Irish funeral is. It’s a unique part of our culture that can’t be appreciated fully until you are grieving through it. The video was shared hundreds of times across social media, often accompanied by the quote: “Being Irish you know that a good funeral is better than a bad wedding.” The international reaction was one of shock and admiration. It seemed to confirm that the Irish, even in death, are always enjoying themselves. (This is an improvement on the previous paragraph as it illustrates that there indeed isn’t a party like an Irish party.)

The Irish hospitality is something we are famed for and perhaps why family pubs are so popular with tourists. The Irish will go out of their way to be as welcoming as possible to guests. I am reminded again of another of my Granddad’s anecdotes. His house was overflowing one Christmas, as all his sons had decided this was the year they would introduce their girlfriends to the family. Twenty one people were booked in to stay at the Murphy Inn that night, spread between four rooms. Kevin, the eldest son, had recently moved to Cork and had become well-known after the impression he left on the football pitch. According to my aunt’s account, he made a very good impression on the local parish priest there. Some girl from the parish was stuck in Kerry for the night and the priest directed her back to “Kevin Murphy’s house.” Just like that, she was invited to stay for the night, even though none of the twenty one people had ever laid eyes on her before. That is only one of hundreds of examples of Grandad’s excessive hospitality. He was also known to invite a travelling gypsy to move in whilst Nanny was in hospital one week or to open up the back garden to twenty Kilkenny nurses looking for a place to camp during the “Rose of Tralee” festival.

Leaving Cert English Papers are marked using “PCLM”

Clarity of purpose:, coherence of delivery, accuracy of mechanics.

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Leaving Cert: ‘Essay the best thing I’ve ever written’

An ease among students exiting exam hall after opener, says lucan community college principal.

irish culture essay leaving cert

Lucan Community College principal Diane Birnie welcomes students on their way in to sit their Leaving Certificate English Paper 1. Photograph: Alan Betson/The Irish Times

“My personal essay was the best thing I’ve ever written,” exclaimed one enthusiastic Leaving Cert student to his friends as he exited the exam hall after English Paper 1 on Wednesday morning.

“Oh yeah? I’m sure it was,” the young man’s friend quipped back with raised eyebrows.

The response to the opening exam of this year’s Leaving Certificate was mostly positive at Lucan Community College in west Dublin where 146 students are sitting the State exams.

Among them was Niamh Sim (18), who is hoping to study nutrition, and said she was “pretty happy” with how the first paper had gone.

Michael Brennan of Killarney's Europe hotel: ‘It’s probably more efficient to close at Christmas’

Michael Brennan of Killarney's Europe hotel: ‘It’s probably more efficient to close at Christmas’

Matt Williams: O’Gara’s greats will go out the gate because Leo’s Lions are made of iron

Matt Williams: O’Gara’s greats will go out the gate because Leo’s Lions are made of iron

Is the fear of saying unfamiliar words out loud a particularly Irish thing?

Is the fear of saying unfamiliar words out loud a particularly Irish thing?

Godzilla used to be a metaphor for nuclear horror. Nowadays the monsters are metaphors for the lumbering franchises they appear in

Godzilla used to be a metaphor for nuclear horror. Nowadays the monsters are metaphors for the lumbering franchises they appear in

“I timed my paper well. I’m a panicky person so knowing how much time I had and following that really helped,” she said.

“For Question B I did the text for a podcast which I was happy with because it was directly about what sort of music you listen to and music is one of my biggest passions and I felt like I could write about it comfortably. I just thought it was a great question for me … I found that paper really nice, I really liked it.”

The Leaving Certificate and Junior Cycle exams got under way for more than 131,000 students on Wednesday, marking the first full return to traditional written exams after two years of disruption due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Ronak Pathak (18), who is hoping to study architecture or computer science, described English Paper 1 as “good” and “not as stressful as I thought it was going to be”.

“Nothing came up where I felt like, ‘oh I can’t answer that’ but there was also no question that really stood out to me that I enjoyed,” he said.

“Overall, I think it was a decent paper that everyone could manage. One thing I struggled with was the timing. Even though we had loads of time for this exam, I still spent way too much time on my Question A.

“I got it all done in the end but I definitely could have timed it better.”

Yasmin Aminou (18), who would like to study a health or science course, said “getting the first exam out of the way feels great”.

“It was just that first obstacle and now that it’s over I’m feeling ready for the next one,” she said.

“I think the paper really connected well with the youth and I think we’re seeing more of that in recent paper … the paper was talking about music, poetry, books, stuff that we all take part in. It was really nice to see that and let our own interests shine through in the paper.”

Diane Birnie, principal at Lucan Community College, said there was “an ease” among students exiting the exam hall after the opening exam.

“Most students were coming out with smiles on their faces, and whether that was because of the exam or just glad to be finished it, I don’t know, but very few students left early so we’re delighted with that,” she said.

“Overall, I think it was a good first day … The last two years were a huge ask of all the staff members and teachers who had to produce assessments for their students, that was a big change from what we would have normally done.

“It’s lovely to have had our usual run-in with sixth years where teachers are their advocate, advising them what might come up on an exam and how to use their time appropriately.

“That advice had to be cut short in previous years because the teacher had this dual roll … I think everyone is appreciating the good routines we’ve been in for so many decades in our education system and being able to get back to that after two years of upset is brilliant.”

Sarah Burns

Sarah Burns

Sarah Burns is a reporter for The Irish Times


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Mastering Irish Essay Phrases for Leaving Cert Success - Tips and Tricks for Achieving Success

Updated: Sep 28


Irish essay writing can be challenging for Leaving Certificate students, but mastering a few key phrases can make a big difference in your grade. In this blog post, we will cover some of the most commonly used Irish essay phrases that can help you to improve your writing and achieve success in your exams.

irish culture essay leaving cert

"Introductory Phrases"

• Tá sé seo i gceist: This is the topic at hand

• Tá sé tábhachtach a thabhairt faoi deara: It is important to note

• Is é an chaoi a ndéanann mé: The way I would go about

• Tá sé ábhar dúshlánach: It is a challenging subject

• Déanfaidh mé iarracht: I will attempt

"Transitional Phrases"

• Mar sin féin: Nevertheless

• Ar an gcaoi chéanna: In the same way

• Is é an fhírinne: The truth is

• I gcomparáid le: In comparison to

• Dá réir sin: Therefore

"Concluding Phrases"

• D'fhéadfadh sé a bheith: It could be argued

• Is é mo dhearbhú: My conclusion is

• Ar deireadh: In conclusion

• Tá sé éasca a fháil amach: It is easy to see

irish culture essay leaving cert

What are some common Irish essay phrases that are useful for Leaving Cert students to know?

Some common Irish essay phrases that are useful for Leaving Cert students to know include "ar an gcéad dul síos" (to begin with), "mar shampla" (for example), and "chun an pointe seo" (up to this point).

How can using Irish essay phrases in a Leaving Cert essay help to improve a student's grade?

Using Irish essay phrases in a Leaving Cert essay can help to improve a student's grade by demonstrating their proficiency in the Irish language and their ability to effectively express themselves in it. Additionally, it can also showcase a student's understanding of Irish culture and history which is an important component of the Leaving Cert Irish exam.

By incorporating these commonly used Irish essay phrases into your writing, you can improve the structure and fluency of your essays. Practice using these phrases in your own writing and you will find that your essays will become more polished and effective. Remember to also focus on other important writing skills such as organization, clarity, and strong arguments. With hard work and dedication, you can achieve success in your Leaving Certificate exams.

Are you a leaving certificate student struggling with Irish?

Our Irish grinds service offers expert, personalized tutoring to help you achieve your goals. Our team of experienced and knowledgeable instructors will provide individualized support and guidance to ensure that you have the tools and knowledge you need to succeed in your exams.

Plus, with access to our comprehensive online study notes and regular progress assessments, you'll have the support you need to feel confident and prepared. Don't hesitate, sign up for our Irish grinds today and take the first step towards success.

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    Irish language – the current state of the Irish language, future directions, Irish culture. *NOTE* an essay on young people comes up almost every year so it

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