Buckingham Palace in a statement confirmed: “The Queen has been pleased to accept an invitation from the President of Ireland to pay a state visit to Ireland this year. The Queen will be accompanied by the Duke of Edinburgh.”
A date for the visit has not been released but it is widely expected to be in May.
The Queen will be following in the footsteps of her grandfather George V, who came here in 1911, before independence.
In a statement, the office of President Mary McAleese said the timing of the visit would be confirmed at a later date.
“President McAleese is pleased to announce that Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II has accepted an invitation to visit Ireland this year,” it said.
“The dates of the visit and the programme will be announced jointly by Aras an Uachtarain and Buckingham Palace in due course.”
SDLP Leader Margaret Ritchie said:
“I very much welcome the fact that President McAleese has issued, and that the Queen has accepted, an invitation to make an official visit to Ireland this year.
“While this event is certainly historic in its own right, it is, just like the English rugby team playing in Croke Park, another sign of the positive maturity and closeness of Anglo-Irish relations in recent times.
“Both the Queen and the President have played no small part in signalling an end to old enmities and a blossoming of an excellent new relationship between Britain and Ireland.
“I am sure the Queen will be given a very warm Irish welcome and I hope that even those who historically take issue with the British monarchy will show a new spirit of generosity and maturity that shows our country really is moving on.”