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Gay Tours and Holidays to Ireland

Gay vacations to Ireland have been a popular choice dating back to at least the time of Oscar Wilde. While Ireland may not have been nearly as LGBT-friendly in his time, it has come a long way since the days of folks - like Wilde - being sent to hard labor camps or jail for what was then known as "indecency." In fact, up until 1861 the act of sodomy was punishable by death, but today Ireland has recently moved ahead of the U.S. when it comes to LGBT rights by legalizing civil unions for same-sex couples in 2009, after decriminalizing homosexuality in 1993.

While this does not mean that this largely Catholic country is ready to embrace same-sex relationships in every village - or even every city - Ireland is now far more welcoming and can safely be considered a great place for gay travel. Several larger cities, including Dublin, Galway, Cork and Waterford, have visible, active communities, community celebrations, numerous establishments catering or welcoming to the community and plenty of attractions to fill an entire vacation; however, whether travelers choose to participate in solo travel or gay tours, one should not miss the Irish countryside and quaint, traditional villages that dot the verdant landscape or sit atop breathtaking coastal cliffs during their vacation to Ireland as well.

Most of Ireland's larger cities now have a thriving community, establishments that are LGBT-friendly or LGBT-owned, annual community celebrations and a plethora of attractions that could easily fill your whole vacation; however, you also will not want to miss visiting the Irish countryside and exploring quaint villages sitting at the top of breathtaking cliffs along the coast.

While several larger cities now have annual community celebrations, pubs and clubs, community organizations and a visible LGBT scene, Dublin is unquestionably the center of LGBT life in Ireland and should be part of any gay travel plans to this country. Dublin nightlife offers both a casual pub scene and an upscale club scene complete with dress codes, which allows those on gay vacations to experience two very different aspects of local LGBT life. There are also a number of community festivals that take place throughout the year, including the Dublin International LGBTQ Pride Festival in June, the Dublin Lesbian and Gay Film Festival in July and the Dublin Gay Theatre Festival in May.

There is always something going on in Dublin, on either a small or large scale, so it is a good idea to pick up a copy of GNC, Ireland's main community magazine, when you arrive in town. There are many must-see attractions when partaking in gay travel in Dublin, including the Guinness Storehouse, the Old Jameson Distillery, the Hugh Lane Gallery, the Book of Kells, the Oscar Wilde House Museum and Dublin's quintessential LGBT bar, The George.

Folks planning a gay tour to Ireland should consider partaking in gay tours to ensure that they do not miss out on the plethora of historical, cultural and natural attractions that this intriguing, romantic nation has to offer.
About Author Howie Holben :

Howie Holben has traveled throughout the world for more than 30 years. He owns and runs Spirit Journeys, a spiritual gay travel organization. Spirit Journeys has offered gay tours with a difference since 1992. You can learn more at <a href="" target="_blank"></a>.

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Article Added on Saturday, February 6, 2010
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