The Five Best Irish Gifts for Christmas
When it comes to gift giving, the very best presents are those with a story. And there’s no better story than the ancient folklore of Ireland. From Irish whiskey – distilled for centuries on the rugged coast of the Emerald Isle to the traditional Aran knitwear, hand-loomed for generations, to Celtic jewellery; talismans worn proudly by the Irish throughout history. You see, the best Irish gifts are more than just presents, they are a tale of heritage and custom, culture and legacy.
In this short guide, you’ll find five of the best Irish gift ideas. A curation of Irish gifts spanning from Galway to Cork, from Limerick to Donegal, so that whether you’re Irish by blood or just in spirit, you can give a piece of Eire to a loved one this Christmas.
Irish Whiskey: The perfect Irish gift of a tipple
Long before this country ever exported its famous stout, there was another tipple giving the Irish their charm. Whiskey, deriving from the Gaelic word ‘uisce beatha’ or ‘water of life,’ was brought to our shores by monks, returning from their travels in the Mediterranean. As the centuries passed, the production of this golden drop expanded, and by the 1890s there would be over 30 significant distilleries scattered across Ireland.
Favoured by many for its distinctive taste, Irish Whiskey makes for one of the best Irish gifts you can give to those who love a tipple. And whilst today countless distilleries offer their version of this legendary spirit, whichever bottle you settle on, it’ll be woven with the same rich history of tale and tradition.
Aran Knitwear: The cosiest Irish gift you can give
The Aran Islands are dotted just off the West Coast of Ireland, and although small in size – these little isles have made their name known all over the world. It’s here that the chunky woollen wear, known as the Aran sweater, was first loomed by the wives of fishermen. Knitted from sheep’s wool, these hardy garments kept the Irish warm even in the harshest of Atlantic winters. And although first founded to be functional, the Aran stitch has since become fashion too.
From cable-stitch sweaters to honeycomb-stitch blankets, Aran knitwear makes for a wonderful Irish gift for Christmas. For the most authentic quality though, you’ll want to check the stitches have been sewn on the Isles of Aran themselves, spun in the techniques that have been taught there for generations.
Whether born here or drawn here, Ireland is a very special place for many. It holds memories and moments, from hometowns to holidays, treasured thoughts can be recalled simply by hearing the name of a place or seeing its spot on a map. So, what better gift this Christmas, than one that can bring back special memories time and time again?
Nestled in the green heart of Galway, Frames of Ireland creates museum-quality prints of the glorious Irish land and sea. There’s the option to personalise the prints, pinpointing places that hold significance, and including special messages too. Framed in premium wood, these maps are carefully gift-wrapped before being couriered to your address, ready for you to share one of the best Irish gifts on Christmas morning. Hung pride of place in hallways and living rooms, our mounted maps of Ireland bring a little piece of the Emerald Isle to homes all over the world.
Celtic Jewellery: The Best Irish Gift to Treasure
Celtic Irish jewellery is not only beautiful in design, with its intricate and complex metalwork, but it’s also rich in meaning too. Once worn by the Celts of Ireland, the jewellery has its origins rooted in religion and spirituality, often representing love, family, faith, and friendship. Today, those original designs live on, making Celtic jewellery one of the best Irish gifts you can give at Christmas.
Necklaces, rings, and bracelets are emblazoned with a variety of symbols first coined by the Celts. There’s the Trinity knot or Triquetra – known as a symbol of life. The Love Knot, representing two interlocking hearts and a relationship of everlasting love, as well as the Celtic Cross believed to have been created by Ireland’s patron saint, Saint Patrick. Each talisman carries a deeply meaningful story, only made more special when gifted at Christmas.
Connemara Marble: The Oldest Irish Gift
Connemara is a scenic corner of County Galway, famous for its wildness and beauty. It’s here that you’ll find Connemara marble, a rare and exquisite stone thought to be more than 900 million years old. Its distinct green hue makes it unmistakably Irish, the emblematic stone of our isle.
Today, you can find the Connemara marble in everything from studded earrings to Christmas tree baubles, from pendants to coasters. It makes for the perfect Irish gift, a gemstone carved out from the Emerald Isle itself.
So, there you have it. Our guide to the perfect Irish gifts, meaningful presents wrapped in tales of legend and love.