One question I get asked again and again is: what should I bring with me on my holiday to Ireland? I always hesitate to give advice on packing because try as I might, I am far from an efficient packer! I inevitably come home from a holiday with a bag full of clothes I didn’t wear and things I regret bringing! The same happened to me again recently when visiting some of our favorite parts of Ireland with friends from abroad, but one pair of shoes I was quite glad I brought on all my adventures was the Vivaia Aria 5° flats. They were so perfect for gentler walks and still felt chic when I wore them with a dress in the evening to go to dinner. This pair is also made from hemp, making it breathable and perfect for the warmer weather we’ve been experiencing lately. I’m definitely including a pair of Vivaia flats on future trips as well (they’re also handy with how light they are so they barely take up any space in my suitcase) and thought I should share some other tips on what to bring with you on your trip to Ireland.
wearing Emmy Design Sweden cardigan, AmyJoyLondon dress, Aria 5° Hemp Flat Shoes by Vivaia, old basket
Always bring a rain jacket! No matter the season you visit Ireland in or type of activities you prefer, waterproofs are a must. Winter can be mild, summer can be cold, but you will almost always get rain. Sometimes it’s only a gentle mizzling rain, sometimes it’s lashing at you sideways on the top of the Cliffs of Moher! A good rain jacket will help keep you dry no matter the conditions while also being lightweight compared to an umbrella. I don’t often feature my rain jackets since I don’t like taking pictures in the rain to avoid damaging my camera, but they’re probably some of the most worn pieces in my closet and I never go on a trip around Ireland without one.
Don’t forget to wear layers. I might dander about in a dress many days of spring and summer, but I always have a sweater or jacket within handy reach because when it cools off here it cools off quickly. Many people visiting from warmer climates will also find the Irish summer quite mild, so while the locals might bare their legs the moment the sun comes out, it’s really not that warm compared to many countries so don’t be deceived and pack clothes that will allow you to bundle up. Even when the morning is bright and clear, as an island the weather in Ireland is very changeable so layers and are absolute must!
Comfortable flat shoes. I pretty much abandoned my penchant for high heels when I moved to Ireland as cobblestones and gravel paths were killing my ankles! Even if you’re not hiking it still makes sense to pack sensible, flat shoes. The Aria 5° Hemp flat shoes by Vivaia have the look of an elegant flat but are lightweight and breathable because they’re made of natural fibers—and they have a decent amount of padding and support so they’re perfect for long days exploring. I have been wearing flats for years, but these are the most functional ones I own for extensive walking since hemp is naturally antimicrobial and moisture-wicking. One of the reasons I love Vivaia so much is their dedication to environmentally friendly shoes; many of their shoes are made with recycled materials and this limited collection in hemp is another step towards sustainable footwear. I can comfortably wear these all day walking down stone paths along the shore, or into town in the evenings to poke around the shops and enjoy a bite to eat. An absolute genius element of these shoes as well is that they are machine washable! So even if you get them muddy on your adventures through a grassy field, they’re super easy to clean. I also love the neutral color of these because they go with everything!
wearing Emmy Design Sweden cardigan, AmyJoyLondon dress, Aria 5° Hemp Flat Shoes, old basket
Carry cash. Most places in Ireland will accept card payments, but there are still some shops that are cash only as well as tolls on the roads if you’re driving, so it’s wise to have some Euros on hand if you’re traveling around Ireland and pounds if you head up to Northern Ireland. I wouldn’t carry much, but even when we were visiting Garnish, an Irish island off the coast of Cork, we were informed just before our ferry ride that the entrance into the gardens on the island was cash only. Definitely something you need to know before you get on a boat and head across the water! Again, it’s not very common these days, but it does happen and I never regret having a small wallet of Euros on hand when we travel around Ireland.