PHOTO: Mark Murphy on FOX 29 Philadelphia. (photo courtesy of travAlliancemedia)
There's arguably no better place to celebrate Ireland's most prominent patron saint on St. Patrick's Day than the island itself. And with the holiday officially just two weeks away, travAlliancemedia president and CEO Mark Murphy stopped by the FOX 29 Philadelphia studio Friday to explain what makes Ireland so special and provide advice on the best ways to experience it.
"The people are just fabulous. They welcome you with open arms," said Murphy, who has citizenship in Ireland. "After the people, look at the scenery. It's breathtaking."
Murphy recommends visitors begin their journey through Ireland in the country's capital and largest city.
"You're jumping off point for Ireland is probably going to be Dublin. It's a walking city and there are plenty of places to stay," Murphy added, encouraging tourists to pay a visit to the iconic Guinness Storehouse.
Purchasing a travel package is also an excellent option.
"There's CIE Tours and Brendan Vacations and other folks that put together packages where they'll take you around Ireland," said Murphy. "You might start out and spend two nights in Dublin and then, depending on the package you purchase, you can stay in castles, you can stay in bed and breakfasts."
"It's a really good value," Murphy added.
While many will be tempted to plan their getaway to Ireland around St. Patrick's Day, the days and weeks after March 17 promise better value, according to Murphy. "Everything goes up extremely high for St. Patrick's Day—right after you see airfares drop from well over $1,000 to under $600 roundtrip."