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Ireland Country Guide

Explore Ireland in Europe

Ireland with the capital city Dublin is located in Europe (Western Europe, occupying five-sixths of the island of Ireland in the North Atlantic Ocean). It covers some 70,280 square kilometres (slightly larger than West Virginia) with 4,156,000 citizens.

Interactive map of Ireland

The topography includes mostly level to rolling interior plain surrounded by rugged hills and low mountains with sea cliffs on west coast. The average density of population is approximately 59 per km². The notable climate conditions in Ireland can be described as temperate maritime with modified by North Atlantic Current, mild winters, cool summers, consistently humid and overcast about half the time. Possible natural disasters include NA.

To reach someone in Ireland dial +353 prior to a number. There are 2,080,000 installed telephones. And there are 4,871,000 registered mobile phones. The cellular networks commonly support frequencies of 900/1800/3G MHz. Websites registered in this country end with the top level domain ".ie". If you want to bring electric equipment on your trip (e.g. laptop power supply), note the local power outlet of 230V - 50Hz.

About the flag and history of Ireland

Ireland Flag Icon

Three equal vertical bands of green (hoist side), white, and orange; officially the flag colors have no meaning, but a common interpretation is that the green represents the Irish nationalist (Gaelic) tradition of Ireland; orange represents the Orange tradition (minority supporters of William of Orange); white symbolizes peace (or a lasting truce) between the green and the orange note: similar to the flag of Cote d'Ivoire, which is shorter and has the colors reversed - orange (hoist side), white, and green; also similar to the flag of Italy, which is shorter and has colors of green (hoist side), white, and red.

Celtic tribes arrived on the island between 600 and 150 B.C. Invasions by Norsemen that began in the late 8th century were finally ended when King Brian BORU defeated the Danes in 1014. English invasions began in the 12th century and set off more than seven centuries of Anglo-Irish struggle marked by fierce rebellions and harsh repressions. A failed 1916 Easter Monday Rebellion touched off several years of guerrilla warfare that in 1921 resulted in independence from the UK for 26 southern counties; six northern (Ulster) counties remained part of the UK. In 1949, Ireland withdrew from the British Commonwealth; it joined the European Community in 1973. Irish governments have sought the peaceful unification of Ireland and have cooperated with Britain against terrorist groups. A peace settlement for Northern Ireland is gradually being implemented despite some difficulties. In 2006, the Irish and British governments developed and began to implement the St. Andrews Agreement, building on the Good Friday Agreement approved in 1998.

National administrative regions of Ireland

Geography Quick-Facts

SummaryContinent: Europe
Neighbours: United Kingdom
Capital: Dublin
Size70,280 square kilometers (km² or sqkm) or 27,135 square miles (mi² or sqmi)
slightly larger than West Virginia
CurrencyName Euro, Currency Code:EUR
Country Top Level Domain (cTLD).ie
Telephone Country Prefix+353
Mobile Phone Connections4,871,000
Landline Phone Connections2,080,000

Country Position in World Rankings

Information about single country attributes and how these compare against the rest of the world. The information below is compiled with data from 2013. As such, it may differ a bit to the Information above in the text (which is from 2010).


Value nameValueWorld Rank
Area70,273 (sq km)120

People and Society

Value nameValueWorld Rank
Population4,775,982 119
Population growth rate1.16 (%)99
Birth rate15.50 (births/1,000 population)130
Death rate6.41 (deaths/1,000 population)152
Net migration rate2.51 (migrant(s)/1,000 population)34
Maternal mortality rate6.00 (deaths/100,000 live births)169
Infant mortality rate3.78 (deaths/1,000 live births)203
Life expectancy at birth80.44 (years)26
Total fertility rate2.01 (children born/woman)128
Health expenditures9.20 (% of GDP)39
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate0.20 (%)98
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS6,900 112
HIV/AIDS - deaths100 129
Obesity - adult prevalence rate25.20 (%)57
Education expenditures6.50 (% of GDP)30
Unemployment, youth ages 15-2429.40 (%)27


Value nameValueWorld Rank
GDP (purchasing power parity)195,400,000,000 58
GDP - real growth rate0.90 (%)163
GDP - per capita (PPP)42,600 24
Labor force2,104,000 120
Unemployment rate14.60 (%)142
Distribution of family income - Gini index33.90 94
Investment (gross fixed)9.30 (% of GDP)149
Taxes and other revenues34.00 (% of GDP)67
Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-)-8.50 (% of GDP)201
Public debt118.00 (% of GDP)12
Inflation rate (consumer prices)1.30 (%)19
Central bank discount rate1.75 (%)118
Commercial bank prime lending rate3.81 (%)171
Stock of narrow money118,500,000,000 29
Stock of broad money291,100,000,000 33
Stock of domestic credit892,300,000,000 18
Market value of publicly traded shares33,720,000,000 57
Industrial production growth rate3.00 (%)97
Current account balance3,500,000,000 32
Exports113,600,000,000 36
Imports63,100,000,000 49
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold1,703,000,000 126
Debt - external2,163,000,000,000 11
Stock of direct foreign investment - at home260,500,000,000 19
Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad338,100,000,000 17


Value nameValueWorld Rank
Electricity - production26,350,000,000 (kWh)69
Electricity - consumption26,100,000,000 (kWh)67
Electricity - exports242,000,000 (kWh)66
Electricity - imports732,000,000 (kWh)69
Electricity - installed generating capacity7,401,000 (kW)65
Electricity - from fossil fuels75.30 (% of total installed capacity)99
Electricity - from hydroelectric plants3.20 (% of total installed capacity)129
Electricity - from other renewable sources17.50 (% of total installed capacity)8
Crude oil - imports53,560 (bbl/day)56
Refined petroleum products - production55,340 (bbl/day)84
Refined petroleum products - consumption144,000 (bbl/day)70
Refined petroleum products - exports17,480 (bbl/day)76
Refined petroleum products - imports166,000 (bbl/day)34
Natural gas - production346,000,000 (cu m)73
Natural gas - consumption4,981,000,000 (cu m)60
Natural gas - imports4,633,000,000 (cu m)35
Natural gas - proved reserves9,911,000,000 (cu m)81
Carbon dioxide emissions from consumption of energy40,480,000 (Mt)69


Value nameValueWorld Rank
Telephones - main lines in use2,047,000 57
Telephones - mobile cellular4,906,000 106
Internet hosts1,387,000 40
Internet users3,042,000 67


Value nameValueWorld Rank
Airports39 107
Railways3,237 (km)54
Roadways96,036 (km)45
Waterways956 (km)68
Merchant marine31 84


Value nameValueWorld Rank
Military expenditures0.90 (% of GDP)139

Data based on CIA facts book 2010 & 2013, wikipedia, national statistical offices and their census releases

List of current world heritage sites

Brú na Bóinne - Archaeological Ensemble of the Bend of the Boyne
The three main prehistoric sites of the Brú na Bóinne Complex, Newgrange, Knowth and Dowth, are situated on the north bank of the River Boyne 50 km north of Dublin. This is Europe's largest and most important concentration of prehistoric megalithic a ...
Sceilg Mhichíl
This monastic complex, perched since about the 7th century on the steep sides of the rocky island of Skellig Michael, some 12 km off the coast of south-west Ireland, illustrates the very spartan existence of the first Irish Christians. Since the extr ...