I agree with comments from tats...many of the best sights were simply stumbled upon! We stumbled upon an old cemetery south of Kilkenny, and some of the Irish people visiting the site and taking grave markings told is about the very large stone cross near the cemetery, a 'high cross' (in Ireland from 7th century to 11th century!) said to be the burial place of Niall Caille a high king, the king of Ailech in the 9th century
...and ancient fortress
And the village of Cashel had both a great photo opportunity and terrific cheese (blue type, which I usually dislike!)
a panorama made from two shots
My wife and I agree about spending a bit of time in the big city, but spend much more time outside the big city if you can, to really experience the people and the culture of a country! As for equipment, don't dwell too much on it...the above shots were taken many years ago with a G2, before I owned my first dSLR!