For a cultural mini break in Limerick where you can enjoy attractions such as the Angela’s Ashes Walking Tour it’s best to base yourself in the city centre, where there are many hotels to accommodate your needs be it a budget two star stay, a luxury four or five star break or one of many boutique independent hotels that feel like a home from home. Most of the cultural attractions in Limerick are around the city centre and this is also where many of the hotels are based - around the main shopping areas like O’Connell Street, in quays overlooking the River Shannon and around the Georgian Quarter, Grove Island and the Milk Market. Limerick is a city for walkers and there are plenty of bars and cafes to take refreshment between visits.
A Taste of Literary Ireland
The Angela’s Ashes Walking Tour is a two-hour tour which starts from the Limerick Tourist Office on Arthur’s Quay. It takes place daily in the afternoon and must be booked in advance at the tourist office. Angela’s Ashes is a Pulitzer Prize-winning book by Irish writer Frank McCourt, which was written in 1996. It is his well-loved memoir of a life of poverty growing up in the slums of Limerick before the war, his teenage years in Brooklyn, NY, and life in Limerick as an adult. The book explores his family’s struggles with alcohol, money and work. Frank McCourt wrote two sequels to the book and a film was also made starring Emily Watson and Robert Carlyle. There is a small museum in his memory in the town centre which has been lovingly recreated by a local artist.
A Walking Tour of Limerick city
The walking tour lasts for two hours and takes you around the main locations mentioned in the book (they are not all there anymore), but that’s made clear at the start of the tour and the guide is lively, funny and informative. It will give you a deeper sense of the city and some historical perspective of the Irish struggles. It explores places like Leamy House, the school Frank attended until he was 14, the St Vincent de Paul Charity House, South’s Pub, various churches and takes you around Arthur’s Quay, the Shannon, Barrack Hill, Windmill Street and Parnell Street. It gives you a good overview of historic Georgian Limerick as you can see offices and houses overlooking St John’s Cathedral.
Historic Hotels in Limerick city
There are a handful of historic or boutique independent hotels in Limerick, which will add to the ambience of a literary visit. Some are based within a mile of the Frank McCourt Museum so you can learn more about Angela’s Ashes and literary Ireland. Many of the hotels are also close to historic sites in area - the Georgian Quarter, St Mary’s Cathedral, the Treaty Stone and King John’s Castle. From your base you can walk to all of the key attractions - library, art galleries, museums and there are plenty of Wi-Fi cafes, bars and restaurants to explore.
There is no shortage of quirky and historical accommodation in Limerick city to enhance a cultural visit. Try a townhouse style hotel in the historic Georgian Quarter, a modern hotel on the quays overlooking the riverside for inspiring views or a more affordable break in one of the suburban hotels around the city’s main parks and educational institutes in Castletroy and north Limerick.