Wondering how big is Ireland?
Well, that question and more is answered in this article.
As a Dublin girl, I am often asked questions about the size of Ireland, that is if I’m not asked, where is Ireland? You’d be surprised how many people don’t know where Ireland is.
And the answer often surprises people.
For a small island with a small population, we Irish get around. Thanks to widescale emigration in previous centuries, it is thought there are between 50 and 80 million Irish diaspora across the world.
You can’t go anywhere without bumping into us. My family and I were recently planting trees in a fire-ravaged area near us in Portugal and bumped into an Irish man, also from Dublin.
That said, you’re here to find out how big is Ireland and I’m going to share:
- Exactly how big Ireland is, including its length and width.
- How big is Ireland compared to some other countries across the world?
- What is its population, and how it is distributed between the two countries that make up the island of Ireland?
You might be surprised to learn about the size of Ireland and equally surprised with how our reputation and culture have made it seem bigger than it is.
- How big is Ireland?
- How big is Ireland compared to other countries?
- Other facts related to the size of Ireland
- Frequently Asked Questions about the size of Ireland
- The Wrap-up: How Big is Ireland?
How big is Ireland?
So, how large is Ireland then?
Well, you might be surprised to learn that Ireland is the third largest island in Europe after Great Britain and Iceland.
Ireland is also the twentieth-largest island in the world.
And when I am referring to Ireland, I am referring to the island of Ireland which comprises both the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland (pictured below alongside Great Britain).
To learn more about why the island has two countries, you can read my article about the difference between the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland.
But, exactly how big is it? Let’s look at specifics.
Area of Ireland
The total area of Ireland is 84,421 square kilometres, or 32,595 square miles. This is the combination of the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland.
Republic of Ireland size
The area of the Republic of Ireland is 70,273 square kilometres, or 27,133 square miles. It makes up approximately 83% of the land mass of Ireland as a whole island.
Northern Ireland size
The area of Northern Ireland is 14,130 square kilometres, or 5,530 square miles. It makes up approximately 17% of the land mass of Ireland as a whole island.
What is the length and width of Ireland?
The length of Ireland is 486 km, meaning the length of Ireland in miles is 302 miles from north to south.
To drive from Malin Head in County Donegal (the most northerly point in mainland Ireland) to Mizen Head (the most southerly point in mainland Ireland) will take you around eight and a half hours.
The width of Ireland is 275 km from east to west or 171 miles.
If you are driving from Dublin City Centre in the east to Clifden in County Galway in the west, it will take you around three and a half hours.
How long is the coastline of Ireland?
Ireland’s coastline is 3,172 km long or 1,970 miles. This includes the Wild Atlantic Way which is 2,600 km long or 1,600 miles. The Irish coastline is the longest coastline per head of population in Europe. This includes some of the best beaches in Ireland, the best coves, and the best sea cliffs in Ireland.
How big is Ireland compared to other countries?
Ok, so dimensions might not mean much to you so let’s put things into perspective. Below I am comparing the size of Ireland to other countries around the world.
How big is Ireland compared to the US?
As mentioned already, Ireland is 84,421 square kilometres or 32,595 square miles. The United States has an area of 9,833,520 square kilometres or 3,796,742 square miles. This makes the US 116 times bigger than Ireland.
In other words, you could fit 116 Ireland’s into the United States!
But how does it compare to some of the US’ biggest states?
How big is Ireland compared to Texas?
Texas has an area of 695,600 square kilometres (268,596 square miles) making it 8 times bigger than Ireland which has an area of 84,421 square kilometres or 32,595 square miles. The picture below (although it only shows the Republic of Ireland) will give you a better perspective.
How big is Ireland compared to California?
If you are wondering how does the size of Ireland compare to California, California is 5 times bigger than Ireland. It has an area of 423,970 square kilometres (163,696 square miles) to Ireland’s 84,421 square kilometres.
How big is Ireland compared to Alaska?
Alaska, the biggest state in the United States, is a whopping 8 times bigger than Ireland. Alaska has an area of 1,717,856 square kilometres (663,268 square miles) to Ireland’s 84,421 square kilometres.
What state is closest in size to Ireland?
If you are wondering which US state is closest in size to Ireland, then it is Indiana. Indiana has a similar area to Ireland at 94,326 square kilometres (36,420 square miles), whereas Ireland’s area is 84,421 square kilometres (32,595 square miles).
How big is Ireland compared to Great Britain?
The island of England, Scotland and Wales is known as Great Britain, and it is 2.5 times bigger than Ireland. Great Britain’s area is 209,331 square kilometres (80,823 square miles) to Ireland’s 84,421 square kilometres.
How big is Ireland compared to Australia?
Australia is the world’s largest island, while Ireland is only the twentieth-largest island in the world.
Australia’s area is 7,688,287 square kilometres (2,969,907 square miles), making it a huge 91 times bigger than Ireland. That means Ireland would fit into Australia 91 times!
How big is Ireland compared to China?
And not forgetting the second largest country in Asia, China has an area of 9,572,900 square kilometres (3,696,100 square miles), making it 113 times bigger than Ireland. You can fit 113 Ireland’s into China!
Other facts related to the size of Ireland
Where is Ireland located?
Ireland is located on the western edge of Europe.
It lies at 53°26’58”N, 07°30’11”W.
Its nearest neighbour is Great Britain which it is separated from by the North Channel, the Irish Sea and St George’s Channel. And it is on the eastern edge of the Atlantic Ocean.
How big is Ireland’s population?
The population of Ireland, of both Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland is 7 million, comprising a population of 5.9 million in the Republic of Ireland and 1.9 million in Northern Ireland.
Ireland’s population compared to some other countries around the world:
- The population of the US is 47 times bigger than Ireland.
- The population of Great Britain is almost 10 times bigger than that of Ireland.
- The population of Australia is almost 4 times larger than Ireland’s population.
- The population of China is a humongous 201 times bigger than Ireland’s population.
What are the biggest things in Ireland?
And if you are interested, let’s look at the size of some natural landmarks in Ireland.
The highest mountain in Ireland is Carrauntoohil in County Kerry, standing at 1039m or 3409ft.
The longest river in Ireland is the Shannon which flows for 360.5km or 224 miles. It rises in County Cavan and eventually flows into the Atlantic at Limerick.
The largest lake in Ireland is Lake Neagh in Northern Ireland which is 396 square kilometres or 153 square miles.
And finally, the tallest waterfall depends on the time of year. The tallest continuously falling waterfall is Powerscourt Waterfall in County Wicklow which has a height of 106m or 350ft.
However, after there have been heavy rains, the Devil’s Chimney waterfall on the Sligo/Leitrim border becomes the tallest waterfall in Ireland at 150m or 492ft.
Fun fact: The Cliffs of Moher are not Ireland’s tallest sea cliffs. That honour goes to the Slieve League cliffs in County Donegal.
What is big in Irish?
And finally, if you are wondering how to say ‘big’ in Irish it is mór. It can be pronounced like more
or like mu-er, depending on where you are in Ireland.
Frequently Asked Questions about the size of Ireland
Here are some other questions that are frequently asked concerning how big Ireland is.
The Wrap-up: How Big is Ireland?
Ireland is quite a small country for such a big reputation. Our warmth, and enjoyment of the craic and pints of Guinness is world-renowned.
Due to mass emigration, especially during the 19th century, you can find Irish and their descendants across the globe.
But exploring Ireland is easy thanks to its small size compared to the likes of America or Australia. It only takes a few hours to cross from Dublin to Galway and will take you just a day of driving to get all the way from Donegal to Cork.
Did you know just how small Ireland is compared to other countries or has it come as a surprise to you?
Discover more about Ireland with these articles:
- What’s the difference between Ireland and Northern Ireland?
- Weird Laws in Ireland
- Is Donegal in Northern Ireland or Ireland?
- Does it Snow in Ireland?
- Essential Travel Tips for Ireland
- Fun Facts About Ireland
- Fascinating Celtic Symbols You Will See in Ireland
- 15 Things the Irish Are Known For
- Irish Mythological Creatures
- Picture Sources: The True Size (note that The True Size maps only show the outline of the Republic of Ireland).