Susan Boyle with her parents Bridget and Patrick at the family home in Donegal in 1982

Susan Boyle says some of her happiest childhood days were spent in Ireland.

The Scottish songstress, whose mother Bridget hailed from Donegal, was a frequent visitor to the Emerald Isle.

"Special moments of my childhood include when I used to go to Ireland with my mum and dad on holiday," she recalled.

"I went to Ireland first of all when I was six, and I visited a woman called Mrs. Docherty in Dungiven House in a place called Portrush (a seaside town in County Antrim).

"I always remember that place, because I always used to go down to the seaside. Everybody used to be looking for me, but I was up to my backside in sand."

Boyle also went on family vacations to Donegal, and later in life, visited the shrine to Our Lady of Knock in County Mayo. She was a member of her church's choir at the time, and it was at the Knock Basilica where her parish priest, Fr. Basil Clark, said she sang like an angel.

"When I watched the judges' faces (on "Britain's Got Talent") it reminded me of what I was like when I first saw Susan singing in Knock -- absolutely blown away by the quality of the singing and by that fantastic voice," he said.