U2 - who are mid-way through their four-night stand in their hometown - put Dublin on the map internationally. But it's not all about Dublin... Ireland's fine rock and pop heritage runs nationwide and exploring the hometowns of some of our best loved musicians can offer up some hidden gems that will really strike a chord.

The Corrs - Dundalk, Co Louth
Visit one of the most stunning spiritual buildings in the country - St Patrick's Cathedral. Work commenced in 1843, but stopped for several years because of the famine. Afterwards, arrange a guided tour of the Cooley Distillery Visitor Centre and sample some of their award-winning whiskeys.
Must visit venue: The Spirit Store, George's Quay

Maverick Sabre - New Ross, Co Wexford
Those keen to experience a museum with a difference should make a bee-line for the Dunbrody Famine Ship Experience, a tall-ship moored on The Quay. It provides a wonderfully evocative feel for the Irish life in the mid-19th century and, in particular, the enormous impact of the Famine on the local population.Must visit venue: Spider O' Briens, 13 South Street

The Cranberries - Limerick City
The city's Milk Market is fast becoming a destination for food-lovers throughout the country thanks to the quality and variety of the produce for sale in this specially configured, partially covered outdoor space. And if food is putting the city on the map, its rugby tradition hardly needs an introduction and the museum at Thomond Park Stadium is a must for all Munster fans.
Must visit venue: Dolan's Warehouse, 3/4 Dock Road

The Frank and Walters - Cork City
Cork is a culinary gem in Ireland and its storied food tradition dates back centuries. A sense of the importance of one of its most celebrated products, butter, can be seen at The Butter Museum, next door to the old Butter Market. It's an interpretative centre that gives a sense of Cork's proud merchant history.
Must visit venue: Crane Lane Theatre, Phoenix Street

Roisin Murphy - Arklow, Co Wicklow
The pretty market town of Arklow is an excellent base to explore the lush expanse of the Glen of Avoca as well as the sandy beaches of Brittas Bay. The beautiful Clogga Beach is just a 6km journey up the coast.
Must visit venue: D'Arcy McGees, Main Street

Enya - Gweedore, Co Donegal
No visit to the heart of Donegal's Gaeltacht is complete without taking in the stunning vista of the arrestingly titled Poisin Glen. A stop off in the of Bunbeg is recommended too and you can stretch your legs on Magheraclogher beach and photograph it's famous wreck, known locally as Bád Eddie' (Eddie's Boat).
Must visit venue: Dunlewey Theatre, Dunlewey

O Emperor - Waterford City
Waterford's museum scene is among the best in the country and its wonderful Medieval Museum makes an impact before you've even gone inside thanks to the graceful curve of this striking modern building. It's one of three museums collectively known as ‘Waterford Treasures'.
Must visit venue: Theatre Royal, The Mall

The Stunning - Galway City
Galway is something of a foodie mecca thanks to the Michelin-starred Loam and such fine restaurants as Aniar and Ard Bia. There's also McCambridges food hall, Sheridan's Cheesemongers - which celebrated its 20th anniversary this year - and McDonagh's, where you'll get the best fish and chips in Galway, if not the country.
Must visit venue: Roisin Dubh, Lower Dominick Street

Mundy - Birr, Co Offaly
The pre-independence name for Birr was Parsonstown, in recognition of the family who ran the magnificent castle there. The Parsons still live at Birr Castle and its extensive gardens are a refuge for those keen for a peaceful few hours. The castle's astronomy heritage is reflected its the huge, 19th century telescope which has been painstakingly preserved.
Must visit venue: The Chestnut, Green Street

Rackhouse Pilfer - Sligo
Sligolians are justly proud of the Hawk's Well theatre, one of the most acclaimed cultural spots in the country. The ghost of favourite son WB Yeats looms large, especially this the 150th anniversary of his birth. Lissadell, the fine 19th century neo-classical house associated with Yeats and his poetry, has an exhibition in his honour.
Must visit venue: 5th on Teeling, 5 Teeling Street

Engine Alley - Kilkenny City
Hurling is king in the Marble City and if the black-and-amber side is playing, make a beeline for Nowlan Park, Kilkenny's spiritual home. Those with an appreciation for medieval architecture will have much to explore in the old city's narrow, winding streets, while the extensive grounds of Kilkenny Castle provide an Arcadian escape from it all.
Must visit venue: Set Theatre, John Street

Ham Sandwich - Kells, Co Meath
The Spire of Lloyd is a 30m tower that was built in the 18th century. The views from the stop are spectacular - not just of Kells, but of the surrounding green fields of Meath. It has a lantern on top - much like you would find in a lighthouse - but there's no sea around. Quite why it was built is not clear, but that's part of its beauty - just one of the many treasures in this part of Ireland.
Must visit venue: Headfort Arms, Headfort Place

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