PHOTOS - Photos of where to meet that special someone in Ireland

Whether you’re on the hunt for an Irish spouse or you just fancy a bit of craic here are the top places to meet the love of your life in Ireland. From marriage bureaus to match making festivals we have come up with some of the best locations to find an incredible Irish man or woman.

1. GAA  game

GAA is the national sport in Ireland. Similar in ways to Ozzie rules,(football) and ice hockey on grass (hurling)  they are  fast paced games which requires a great deal of skill and precision. It’s at the heart of every community in Ireland so it is the perfect setting for bumping into a desirable. Whether your target is a player on the field or a spectator in the stand, simply spark up a conversation about either of the playing teams and you aer guaranteed to whip them into a verbal frenzy.
If it’s your first time at a Gaelic football game then perhaps you could put forward a few questions to the man or woman involved such as “Do you play yourself?” Also wolf whistling is a real asset here, to really get yourself noticed. Whistle when your team scores. Or try shouting out random statements such as “Ref what are you thinking,” Or “put it (the ball) in the back of the net”. Pretending to have some kind of knowledge of the sport will only allure your possible prey.
2. Trad Session

There is nothing like a good old trad session.  Typically traditional Irish music sessions are perfect for snapping up a 100% authentic Irish person. These musicians are not only ridiculously talented but they are usually able to double fist their instruments with a pint of Guinness. Music & alcohol; two of Ireland’s great loves combined. The passion and talent displayed at a trad session will blow your mind.

Not only could you potentially bag a winner but you will also be immersed in a truly exceptional cultural experience.

3. Irish Wedding

Perhaps you are lucky enough to have some distant relatives that like to invite all the American cousins to the grand Irish weddings. But fear not, all is not lost if you don’t possess an invitation to such a joyous occasion.

Wedding crashing can be an adventure in itself but factor in a possible man or woman hunt and you are in for a thrilling day! Don’t be too cheeky and avoid trying to bag a seat for the dinner. Simply show up at the after party which is when the real fun usually starts.  If anyone asks just simply say you know the bride from when she did her J1, or your uncle Jimmy’s cousin from Boston. You haven’t seen the family since you were a child and are so happy to be a part of their special day. Once you’ve decided on your target swoop in with a few token anecdotes about your childhood visits to the Emerald Isle.

4. Stephens Green Dublin/ Eyre Square Galway

For those of you hitting Ireland during the summer months then these are two locations that will be packed with lads and lasses. If it’s a hot day then you’ve hit the jackpot. Besides the sheer amount of bodies that grace these locations during the summer months, both attractions are well worth a visit.

It’s our job to point out that drinking in public is illegal in Ireland so best not to pull out a six pack in front of the Garda (Irish policeman) doing his rounds.  To really get noticed you should bring along a football perhaps or a Frisbee. Before you know it you will have people joining in from all angles.  If you really want to mix it up bring along some baseball paraphernalia. Pitching a baseball will definitely get you noticed.

PHOTOS - Photos of where to meet that special someone in Ireland

5.  Surfing in Lahinch, Kilkee, Rosses Point or Bundoran.

The Atlantic Ocean draws thousands of visitors each year. The rolling waves off the West coast of Ireland are an optimum spot for bumping into that special someone. Most weekends and holidays these locations witness a flood of Irish surf enthusiasts, who a kin to the surfer stereotype tend to be laid back, down for the craic and adventurous.

If you’re not a surfer yourself then just simply hang around these beautiful beaches or in the local bars where surfers flock to after their day riding the waves.

6. Knock Marriage Bureau

For those of you who are deadly serious about bagging an Irish spouse then Knock Marriage Bureau should be a top priority. Primarily for Catholics this pious service offers the chance introduction to a fellow Catholic looking for love. A high success rate, since it’s inception 15,750 couples have met and 870 marriages have taken place.  Over ten marriages took place in 2008 alone, resulting from their matchmaking skills.

The bureau points out on their website that there is not always a guaranteed success rate “No definite promise can be made that all those who apply to the Bureau WILL find a life partner; but all who register  can rely on the Bureau doing its utmost to help them. “

7. Festivals

Fleadh Cheoil Na Heireann; The Rose of Tralee; St. Patrick’s Festival the list and possibilities are endless. Ireland is home to some of the most unique and diverse festivals which occur all throughout the year. From music to culture there is something for everyone. If you show up to almost any festival in Ireland chances are you will meet that someone special.

Irish people love a good festival and usually take the time out to enjoy the festivities.  The mood, atmosphere and events are especially conducive to colliding with a man or woman.
8. The Islands

Ireland is an island itself of course but it is also surrounded by some of the most charming islands one could imagine. From the famous Aran Islands off the coast of Galway to Achill Island off the coast of Mayo, there are several options for the sea faring kind. A quick boat ride will land you in an unspoilt area of Ireland.

Not only will you get a fabulous insight into islanders existence you will also witness some of the most rugged scenery Ireland has to offer and that’s before you check out the talent! The indigenous people are very friendly and enjoy regaling tourists with tales of the past.

9. Lisdonvarna Matchmaking festival

Ireland’s biggest festival, this gets a mention all of its own. Every year thousands of singles flock to this enamored town in Co. Clare in the hopes of finding love.  Europe’s largest single event includes matchmaking midweek dancing; a racing weekend and concludes with a matchmaking final weekend. Old and young are in with a good a good favorable chance of picking up a few dates.

As their website adds, You never know - as well as enjoying all of the good-natured fun and grand "craic", you might also find the perfect mate!

10. Copper Face Jacks Nightclub, Dublin

If alcohol and dancing is your thing then Copper Face Jacks is the place for you. This venue gets a special mention because of all the couples who met after crossing this treacherous threshold. Coppers is not for the faint hearted, and definitely not for those who sip Grey Goose Martini’s.  Posers stay away, Coppers is rough and ready and packed to capacity with males and females on the prowl!

This no frills nightclub is a mecca for accountants; police; nurses and teachers to mention a few. This Harcourt Street meat market gets very busy at the weekends so best to show up early to get a ringside view of all the talent that parade through the two storey club. One piece of crucial advice, don’t go there sober.
Something for everyone, Irish central advises that you do some pondering on the type of Irish man/woman that you’re looking for before choosing one of the above destinations.  We would like to take this opportunity to wish you the best of luck in your quest to find that special Irish someone. As a nation we are proud, as a people we are kind but as a potential partner we are perfect!

PHOTOS - Photos of where to meet that special someone in Ireland

Originally published in 2011.