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Ireland in 23 days

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Help. Although reasonably seasoned travelers we have discovered treasures of advice at Fodor's, so before going further with our plans we know there will be invaluable advice from y'all (and yes, I say "y'all").

Our current plan is to arrive in Dublin in mid-June, pick up a car at the airport and head south, making a giant clock-wise circle through Ireland over 23 days. The final three days (including dropping the car off in Dublin early that morning) will be in Dublin.

We are "senior" travelers (57 and 62), in good health who walk a great deal. We are thinking of using B&Bs, hotels, AirBNB and are considering one splurge on a "castle" if available (and if it doesn't break our modest bank). We have been looking at the Rick Steves itinerary as a starting point for our travels, but prefer to avoid staying at places made famous (and crowded) by appearing in travel books.

Basic overnights penciled in: Kilkenny, Kinsale, Kenmare, Killarney, Dingle, Ennis, Galway, Inishmore, County Connemara (no specific town), Donegal/Derry, Ballycastle, Belfast, Trim, Dublin.

Our last several trips have been "planned to death" with all nightly arrangements made before departure. Decades ago I visited Ireland and managed arrangements on the fly. Is that advisable or to be avoided?

Finally, what little know but must see sites that are not on the "bus tours." We hope to see the "must see" sights and lesser know ones blessed with some element of tranquility.

We appreciate all the insight, suggestions or "ridicule" folks would like to offer. Last year's trip to Germany, a country I know well, was made much better thanks to the kindness of fellow travelers at Fodor's Forum.

Thank you, in advance, Lynn

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