Weather in Ireland in January: What to Expect

Weather in Ireland

Updated On: April 22, 2024 by   Maha YassinMaha Yassin

While most people living in the Northern Hemisphere tend to navigate towards warmer countries during the winter, some would rather brave the cold! Since January is not a typical tourist season in Europe, countries usually brimming with tourists during the summer are much less crowded and way cheaper. One of these countries that you can visit is our beloved Ireland.

The weather in Ireland can be pretty fickle during January. Average temperatures typically dance between 2-8°C during this time of year. More frequently than not, though, rainfall tends to visit the Emerald Isle rather than hefty snowfall – quite the boon from warmer sea temperatures!

This blog will give you all you need to know about navigating Ireland’s fickle January weather and still ensure a trip with your heart singing.

Key Takeaways

  • Average temperatures in Ireland in January range from 2 to 8 degrees Celsius.
  •  The weather is often cold, rainy, and windy during this month.
  •  Packing warm and waterproof clothing when visiting Ireland in January is essential.
  •  Plan indoor activities to make the most of your trip and embrace Irish culture.

What to Expect from the January Weather in Ireland

In January, Ireland experiences cold temperatures ranging from 2°C to 8°C. The weather is often rainy and windy, so coming prepared with warm and waterproof clothing is essential. Don’t be discouraged, though! The rainy weather in Ireland will give you a whole other experience of the country than the one you’d have gotten any other time. The Isle is still just as beautiful as long as you come prepared.

Here are some of the most important things you need to know about the January weather in Ireland before you pack your bags.

Cold Temperatures (2-8°C)

Weather in Ireland
Weather in Ireland in January

You will feel the chill of Ireland in January. The weather is cold, with temperatures dropping to between 2-8°C. Pack your thickest jacket and your warmest hat, gloves and scarf! Cold winds might bite at any time during this winter month.

This chill can be sharp, but it also brings a clearness to the air, making everything feel fresh. Don’t be shocked if you see ice on puddles or frost-layered fields in the mornings.

It’s common for nights to get colder than days, as well. Despite this, January tends not to have heavy snowfall, so getting around isn’t too hard if you’re wrapped up warmly.

Rainy and Windy Weather

In January, Ireland experiences rainy and windy weather. It is one of the wettest months, so being prepared for rain during your visit is important. Make sure to pack waterproof clothing and an umbrella to stay dry.

The wind can also be substantial, especially along the coast, so hold onto your hat! It might be hard to visit the beaches at that time, but there are still plenty of indoor activities to enjoy in Ireland, such as visiting museums or cosying up in a traditional pub. Embrace the rainy and windy weather by experiencing the local culture and enjoying warm comfort food.

How to Prepare for Ireland’s January Weather

Despite the low temperatures and the strong wind, you can still have a great trip in Ireland during January. All you need to do is come prepared! Preparation is about packing winter clothes, planning weather-friendly activities and embracing the local culture.

We’re going to help you figure it all out! From what to pack to where to go. We’ll make sure you have the best time visiting Ireland in January!

Packing for Ireland in January

Ireland in January is a beautiful place to visit, with its stunning scenery and festive atmosphere. However, the weather can be unpredictable, so it’s important to pack accordingly. Here’s a packing list to help you stay warm and comfortable during your trip:


  • Rain-resistant winter jacket: This is essential for any trip to Ireland, especially in January. The weather can be pretty wet and windy, so you’ll want a coat that will keep you dry and warm. Look for a jacket with a hood and a water-resistant coating.
  •  A scarf, hat, and gloves will keep your head, neck, and hands warm in the cold weather. Choose wool or fleece for the best warmth.
  •  Long-sleeved tops: Pack a variety of long-sleeved tops to layer under your jacket. Thermal tops are a good option for extra warmth.
  •  Sweaters: Pack a couple of sweaters or cardigans for chilly evenings.
  •  Long pants/jeans: You’ll usually want to wear long pants or jeans.
  •  Tights: If you wear a skirt or dress, pack tights to keep your legs warm.
  •  Walking shoes: Comfortable shoes are essential for exploring Ireland’s many castles, ruins, and natural attractions.
  •  Dress shoes: If you plan on going out to dinner or any other formal events, pack a pair of dress shoes.

Other Essential Items

  • Umbrella: It’s always a good idea to pack an umbrella in Ireland, regardless of the time of year.
  •  Daypack: A daypack is essential for carrying your belongings with you while you’re exploring.
  •  Camera: Don’t forget to pack your camera to capture all your trip’s incredible sights and memories.
  •  Travel adapter: If you’re travelling from outside Europe, you’ll need a travel adapter to charge your electronic devices.
  •  Guidebook: A guidebook can help you plan your trip and learn about the places you visit.

Optional items

  • Swimsuit: If you plan on visiting any of Ireland’s many spas, you’ll want to pack a swimsuit.
  •  Sunglasses: Sunglasses can be helpful on sunny days, especially if you’re planning on doing any outdoor activities.
  •  Hiking boots: If you plan on hiking, you’ll want to pack a pair of hiking boots.
  •  Books and magazines: If you’re planning on doing any long train or bus rides, you may want to pack some books or magazines to keep you entertained.

Additional tips

  • Pack layers so that you can adjust your clothing as the temperature changes.
  •  Pack clothes that are comfortable and easy to move around in.
  •  Avoid packing too many clothes. You’ll likely only need a few changes of clothes for a short trip.
  •  Check the weather forecast before you leave so you can pack accordingly.
  •  Don’t forget to pack your medications and any other essential items.

You can edit this list as much as you want and add your Pandora belongings you can’t go without. The weather in Ireland during January might be cold and wet, but as long as you’re dressing appropriately, you’ll be good to go!

Weather in Ireland
Weather in Ireland in January

Planning Indoor Activities for January

When visiting Ireland in January, it’s essential to have a plan for indoor activities. The weather during this month can be cold, rainy, and windy, so spending time outdoors may not always be enjoyable.

Consider exploring museums, galleries, and historical sites to maximise your trip. Solo travellers and backpackers can immerse themselves in Irish culture by visiting local pubs or attending traditional music sessions. Luxury travellers may enjoy a spa day or book tickets to a theatre show. Foodies can savour the flavours of Ireland by trying out different restaurants and cafes offering traditional Irish cuisine.

The Best Indoor Activities to Do in January

January in Ireland offers a unique opportunity to experience its rich culture and heritage while staying warm and cosy indoors. Here are some recommendations for memorable indoor activities you can enjoy despite the cold weather in Ireland.

Visit Museums and Galleries

Museums and galleries are open all year long. No rain or substantial winds will keep them from staying open and welcoming visitors to showcase their beautiful antiquities. There are many museums and galleries around Ireland that are worth visiting. And when the weather in Ireland is too cold to go outside, they are the perfect getaway.

EPIC The Irish Emigration Museum

Embark on an interactive journey through the fascinating history of Irish emigration at EPIC, The Irish Emigration Museum. Explore personalised stories, interactive exhibits, and immersive galleries that bring to life the courage and resilience of the Irish diaspora. Witness compelling artefacts, captivating historical documents, and multimedia presentations vividly depicting the Irish experience abroad.

The Book of Kells & Old Library

The Book of Kells

Travel back in time and delve into medieval manuscripts at the Trinity College Library. Witness the iconic Book of Kells, a masterpiece of Irish art and scholarship dating back to the 9th century. Marvel at its intricate illustrations, vibrant colours, and mesmerising calligraphy. Explore the Long Room, a breathtaking library hall with ancient books and ornate plasterwork.

Irish National Gallery

Immerse yourself in the vibrant world of art at the Irish National Gallery. Discover an extensive collection of Irish and European art spanning centuries, from medieval masterpieces to contemporary works. Wander through galleries showcasing portraits, landscapes, still lifes, and sculptures. Encounter works by renowned Irish artists like William Orpen, Jack B. Yeats, and Sean Scully, alongside famous European masters like Titian, Goya, and Monet.

Hugh Lane Gallery

Hugh Lane Gallery

Step into the contemporary art scene at the Hugh Lane Gallery. Immerse yourself in a diverse modern and contemporary art collection featuring works by Irish and international artists. Discover paintings, sculptures, installations, and multimedia pieces that push boundaries and spark conversations. Explore temporary exhibitions featuring the latest trends and emerging artists.

Visit Historical and Cultural Sites

Ireland is well-known for its rich heritage and history. While visiting museums can give quite a great look into the history of the Emerald Isle, nothing compares to seeing historical and cultural sites in person! From castles to parks, the January weather in Ireland should not keep you away from these awe-inspiring sites.

Kilmainham Gaol

Kilmainham Gaol

Journey through history and experience the poignant atmosphere of Kilmainham Gaol. This former prison played a significant role in Irish history, housing political prisoners and revolutionaries throughout the centuries. Take a guided tour and learn about the lives of the prisoners, the struggles for Irish independence, and the executions that took place within the prison walls.

Dublin Castle

Dublin Castle

Explore the grandeur and history of Dublin Castle, a seat of power for centuries. Discover the magnificent state apartments adorned with ornate tapestries, portraits, and furniture. Wander through the castle grounds and learn about its role in Irish history, from Viking settlements to the British administration. Take a guided tour or explore the exhibits at your own pace.

Brú na Bóinne

Step back in time and marvel at the prehistoric tombs of Brú na Bóinne, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Explore the passage tombs of Knowth, Newgrange, and Dowth, constructed 5,000 years ago. Witness the intricate stonework, carvings, and passageways that offer a glimpse into the beliefs and practices of Ireland’s ancient ancestors. Book a tour in advance to access the inner chambers of the tombs.

Bunratty Castle and Folk Park

Step back and experience life in medieval Ireland at Bunratty Castle and Folk Park. Explore the magnificent 15th-century Bunratty Castle, furnished with period furniture and tapestries. Wander through the Folk Park, a recreated 19th-century village with traditional cottages, shops, and workshops. Experience demonstrations of traditional crafts, enjoy a meal at the Bunratty restaurant and attend a medieval banquet in the castle.

Distilleries and Breweries

Have you heard about Irish whiskey? Well, you’re about to try it! If you’re a whiskey, beer or wine lover, welcome to Ireland, my friend! Visiting the many distilleries and breweries around the Isle is an excellent activity during January weather in Ireland. Not to mention, alcohol can keep you warm!

Guinness Storehouse

Guinness Storehouse

Discover the fascinating story of Ireland’s most iconic beer at the Guinness Storehouse. Embark on a seven-story journey through the brewing process, from grain to glass. Learn about Arthur Guinness’s entrepreneurial spirit, witness the impressive brewing vats, and discover the secrets behind the perfect pint. Enjoy a tasting session at the Gravity Bar with panoramic views of Dublin City.

Jameson Distillery Bow St.

Uncover the history and heritage of Irish whiskey at the Jameson Distillery Bow St. Explore the historic distillery buildings, learn about the triple-distillation process, and discover the unique characteristics of Jameson whiskey. Enjoy a guided tour, a tasting session, and a visit to the Jameson bar, where you can sample different whiskey cocktails.

Irish Whiskey Museum

Irish Whiskey Museum

Go on a sensory journey through Irish whiskey at the Irish Whiskey Museum. Discover the history of whiskey-making in Ireland from its earliest origins. Explore a vast collection of whiskey bottles, memorabilia, and historical artefacts. Sample a variety of Irish whiskeys from different distilleries and learn about the different types and styles.

Smithwick’s Experience

Discover the secrets behind Ireland’s oldest ale at the Smithwick’s Experience. Learn about the brewing process of Smithwick’s ale, from the selection of ingredients to the intricate fermentation process. Explore the historic Smithwick’s Brewery and discover its fascinating history. Enjoy a tasting session featuring the iconic Smithwick’s ale and other beers from the Diageo portfolio.

In conclusion, if you are planning to visit Ireland in January, be prepared for cold temperatures and rainy and windy weather. Pack warm and waterproof clothing, plan indoor activities, and consider visiting during the off-peak season for better deals. The cold weather will not keep you from having a blast on your trip! Just keep an open mind, plan accordingly and enjoy everything that comes your way!


Is Ireland nice to visit in January?

While it is not the best time to visit, considering the cold and wet weather, Ireland is still lovely no matter when you visit. As long as you carefully prepare for your trip, you will have a great time!

Can you see the Northern Lights in Ireland in January?

Yes, you can! The best time to see the Northern Lights is between November and February. If you venture somewhere that is dark with clear night skies, you might be lucky enough to see them.

Can I visit Dublin in January?

Yes! You can visit Dublin even though it may be chilly. The typical weather doesn’t stop many visitors who enjoy local culture and tourist attractions.

Are there any tips on what to wear during my visit?

Talking about clothes for winter trips here would help a lot! Warm clothing items like jackets, scarves or hats become very important, so make sure they’re part of what you pack.

Are there things to do during my trip to Ireland despite the winter climate?

Yes! Even with the Irish Sea being cold, there are still plenty of things to do both indoors and outdoors throughout your holiday stay. Plenty of places exist, from museums and galleries to parks.

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