The grass may be greener on the other side of the fence, but it still doesn’t compare to Ireland, where verdant hills seem to abound everywhere. Looking to experience greener pastures yourself? We asked pro traveler Mickela Mallozzi for help.
A professional dancer and trained musician, Mickela is the four-time Emmy® Award-winning Host and Executive Producer of Bare Feet with Mickela Mallozzi, a travel series that highlights the diversity of dance. She’s been featured in The New York Times, Travel Channel, Dance Magazine, Forbes, and others, and she has performed on various television shows, including Sesame Street and The Doctor Oz Show.
“The beautiful thing about Ireland is that it’s really easy to find authentic music and dance just because of its culture. Going to pubs in the evening, you’ll always hear live music. You can bop from one pub to the other, and you’ll see maybe a duet, a concertina player, or an accordionist with a fiddler player.
People don’t talk about how wonderful the food is. Ireland has always been farm-to-table; they don’t even call it farm-to-table because that’s just how the food is. You’re getting a variety of fish, from cockles and mussels and shellfish to prawns and codfish. Anywhere you go, there’s fish stews and fish chowders. You get really high-quality foods because the farming is high-quality and they’re very environmentally conscious. They’ve got great cheese, incredible lamb, incredible beef. The butter comes from the County Kerry because the grass is so rich.
I would recommend southwest Ireland. That’s where traditional music came from. In particular, there’s Dingle Peninsula: it’s this beautiful, tiny little town that has a population of maybe 2,000 people, but they have about twenty restaurants that offer phenomenal food, phenomenal fish, and every night they have traditional music.
I would also recommend Killarney, which is the birthplace of tourism in Ireland. When the Queen of England came to visit, she had this caravan with her and she was put up at the Great Southern Hotel. It was one of the first hotels that hosted travelers who were traveling for the fresh air, to get out of the city.
If you go from Dublin, drive west to Galway, which is a pretty famous little town, and then drive south of Galway along the coast and you’ll hit the Cliffs of Moher. It’s absolutely stunning. Keep going south, and eventually you’ll go through Killarney and then spend a couple days in Dingle. Good weather’s never guaranteed, but when you do get the good weather, it’s magical.
The hospitality in Ireland is what makes it so wonderful. Even Dublin feels like a small town because they’re so friendly. Once you talk to people and tell them what you’re interested in, they will guide the way.”
Great Southern Killarney
East Avenue Road, Town Centre, Killarney
6 John St, Dingle
Tue-Sun: 6:00-10:00 p.m.
31 Leeson Cl, Dublin