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Limerick itself is full of historical and contemporary delights that include welcoming pubs and restaurants, a lively music and arts scene, castles, splendid Georgian architecture and some wonderful walks along the coast and plenty of opportunities to enjoy the rivers, lakes and sea that surround the city.
Limerick is the fourth largest city in Ireland, and a popular tourist destination, so it is well served by cafes, bars, pubs, restaurants and hotels.
The city centre is divided in three: there’s the historical English Town, complete with atmospheric castle on the southern end of King's Island, Irish Town lining the south bank of the river and the impressive Georgian architecture of Newtown Perry, which can easily be distinguished by its gridded network of streets.
For lovers of history Limerick offers a treasure trove of places to explore. King John’s Castle is a magnificent 13th century showpiece in the centre of town. To best appreciate its imposing walls and towers you should take it all in from the west bank of the River Shannon.
The Hunt Museum is undoubtedly one of Ireland’s finest housing the finest collection of Bronze Age, Iron Age and medieval treasures outside of Dublin.
Just over the medieval Thomond Bridge you will find the Treaty Stone which marks the spot where the Treaty of Limerick was signed to end the war between the Jacobites and the supporters of William of Orange.
As Ireland’s City of Culture in 2014 Limerick confirmed its place at the forefront of the country’s music and arts scenes. Throughout the year Limerick hosts a wide range of festivals, so there is always something happening. ev+a (visual arts) takes place from March to May, the Limerick International Music Festival (classical) is in late May, Blas (traditional music) is held in June and July and Cuisle (poetry) in October.
Even when a festival isn’t taking place there are temporary and permanent exhibitions to explore at the excellent Limerick City Gallery of Art of Art and plenty of opportunities to catch traditional music in the city itself or a short drive away in Milltown Malbay and Doolin, both renowned for their enthusiastic support of Irish music.
Limerick is also a great base to enjoy boat rides down the Shannon from, to fish from tranquil locations, to make trips out to the exquisitely beautiful shores of Lough Gur or to cruise down the coast and enjoy the spectacular views from the Cliffs of Moher.
With its perfect position in the middle of western Ireland Limerick is a great place to use as a springboard to this area, but it’s an even better place to come back to time and time again.