Eire, or the Republic of Ireland, makes up the southern territory of the island of Ireland and constitutes about five-sixths of its entire area. After the 1921 separation of the two entities - when the North remained under the dominion of Britain, while the South became independent - the Republic surprised many by surpassing Northern Ireland in terms of economic and political prosperity and where the latter suffered long periods of unrest and troubles, the former managed to consolidate its position as a flourishing player on the international stage. Once thought of as backward-looking and similarly thinking, Eire now gains worldwide recognition as a nation whose dramatic turnaround has shaped one of the most progressive and rapidly booming countries on the globe. An increasing number of travellers are making Eire their destination of choice and it is a country well deserving of the reputation it is coming to have.
A common association when it comes to the Republic of Ireland is that it is a country of many cosy pubs, rolling green hills, quaint towns and fairies and leprechauns, and, the last two aside, this is not a far cry from the reality. Nevertheless, to say that this is all the country has to offer could not be further from the truth and as endearing as these associations may be, they certainly don't do justice to the many treasures the land has to offer.
Over the thousands of years that Ireland has been inhabited, the country has been host to various invasions and incursions from a multitude of different peoples. However, not only have the Irish people managed to preserve a uniqueness of culture and heritage in the face of considerable foreign pressures over the ages, but they have also managed to create a culture that is today permeating societies around the world and perhaps does so to a greater extent than any other. The Irish themselves have an international reputation for being some of the most friendly, welcoming and fun-loving people on the planet and many travellers consider the inhabitants to be the most alluring feature of the country.