5 Reasons You Should Consider Studying Abroad In Ireland

Last summer, I had the incredible experience of studying abroad in Ireland for six weeks. It was my first overseas trip and only the second foreign country I’d ever been to. My program was based at University College Dublin and I only wish I could have stayed longer.

Obviously, I can’t tell you what to do. But if you want to study abroad, I strongly recommend that you consider Ireland! Here are some reasons why.

1. There is no language barrier

Is English the only language you speak? Or are you concerned that whatever foreign language skills you do possess won’t be enough for such a long trip? Well, worry no more. Of course, I picked up some Gaelic words just from listening and being inquisitive, but one of the great things about Ireland is that its lack of language barrier helps travelers to settle in more easily.

2. It is cheaper than many other locations

Before I settled on the six-week Irish Writing Program, I considered several other options, including one in New Zealand. While I still dream of visiting NZ someday, I knew it was way out of my college student budget. Just remember, studying abroad isn’t about how far away from home you can get. It’s about how much you learn and grow as a person.

3. If you love history, there is so much to see and do

From museums and independent bookshops to guided tours and statues in parks, there is so much to explore while you’re there. I never realized how little I was taught about Ireland in high school despite taking a course in European history! And, of course, it’s fascinating to hear the Irish perspective on US history, politics, and current events.

4. It’s so freakin’ gorgeous

I tell my parents like once a month that I want to take them to western Ireland one day. And I mean it! The countryside is amazingly beautiful, with craggy mountains, green things growing everywhere, and super fluffy sheep. Even bustling urban centers like Dublin, where my classmates and I spent most of our time, have their own charm – old buildings and cobblestone streets and so, so, so many bridges criss-crossing the River Liffey.

5. That accent

This deserves a place all its own on my list #sorrynotsorry. While it’s impossible to pick my favorite accent on the face of this planet, the Irish lilt is especially comforting to my ears. I could happily listen to an Irish person read their grocery list. I could happily listen to them yell at me, probably. I miss that accent (and all its regional variations) more than I can put into words.

Have I convinced you yet? I hope I have. If I could return to Ireland at the snap of my fingers, I would (well, first I’d tell my parents to pack a suitcase full of warm clothing so we can go hiking in western Ireland). It’s a great option for studying abroad, especially if all you know is that you want to travel but aren’t yet sure exactly where. If you have any questions about my experience or need some advice, I’d be happy to help in any way I can!

[All images are stock photography]