1st time in Ireland, any ideas?

Feb 25th, 2004, 03:51 PM
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Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 21
1st time in Ireland, any ideas?

I am going to Ireland for the first time. I land in Shannon on Mar. 15, renting a car and taking the southern route to Dublin, then flying out on Mar. 22.

I really have no clue about things to see, or cities. I think I am most excited about driving and the pubs, but not at the same time, for I think just paying attention to driving on the opposite side than I am use to will be challenge enough.

Any quick ideas anyone can think of that should be must sees...pubs, castles, towns? Thank you for the help!

paqrtravis is offline  
Feb 25th, 2004, 04:49 PM
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Hi - I saw your message when I was looking for info on
Florence. My parents and husband are from Ireland so I have been there upteen times. Since you are arriving in Shannon, I would suggest you stay in Ennis, Co. Clare. You can stay in town at a b&b or there is a nice place we stayed an old country farm a little out of town called "Newpark" House. It is really lovely. If the prices are comparable, you should stay there for your first night. There is a nice bar right across the street called the "Greengrove" People are very friendly in Ireland. You will love it.
Then from there I would go to Galway City. There is plenty of action there. Then up to Dublin. I don't know how long you have, but these 3 cities are highlights. P.S. they are very strict about drinking and driving so be careful.
SCUZZERONI is offline  
Feb 25th, 2004, 05:03 PM
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Congrats on your trip. Different people have different travel styles so I'll give you some ideas. Some people like to stay at a different place every night and others like lengthy stays. Your trip isn't long enough for the longer stays but you could do a couple of two nighters. Also, I'll base this on where you said you would like to go.

This seems sort of like cramming your whole time into one area, but if it were me, I would focus the bulk of the time on the SW. Also, I would make the first day contain very little driving. With were you need to be, I'd do something like this:

15th - Co Clare, see Bunratty Castle and the Cliffs of Moher. There are a variety of places you could stay. I think with your interests, you could end up in Doolin, catch some music at one of the pubs if you can stay awake that late, then crash for the night.

16th - head for Dingle. Take the ferry across the Shannon at Killimer and have a nice grive to Dingle. If you are like me, you'll get there in the early to mid afternoon, because you will wake up kind of late and take your time. You probably won'y have time to tour the peninsula by the time you get there, so have a drink at one of the many fine pubs and soak up some night life.

17th - Tour the Peninsula and spend another night in Dingle. There will probably be some sort of fun for St. Patrick's day in Dingle. It's a fun town.

18th - Head to my favorite town, Kenmare. There is a ton to see here and on the way. Killarney Nat'l Park is fantastic. Technically, you can drive the Gap of Dunloe road in the off season, but you might get some nasty stares if you do. It's a very rough road but a spectacular area. It's usually reserved for hikers and jaunting cars. Alternately, you could take the main, but still very narrow road from Killarney to Kenmare.

19th - Stay in the Kenmare area and either drive the Ring of Kerry or part of it or visit the Beara Peninsula.

20th - Head to Cahir/Cashel area and see Cahir Castle and the Rock of Cashel. Skip Blarney altogether.

21st - Drive to Dublin, have some fun there

22nd - leave

Alternately, if you just want to see things at the speed that bus tours do them you could do:

15 Doolin
16 Dingle
17 Kenmare/Killarney
18 Kinsale (Charles Fort and great food)
19 Cahir
20 Kilkenny or Dublin
21 Dublin

The second would not be my choice and would give you limited time in all of those places with most of your time spent driving there. You will rarely average much over 35 MPH for a days driving and less if you take the little tiny back roads. On the other hand, bus tours do this kind of traveling all the time.

This is just a start and there are tons of options and different directions.

wojazz3 is offline  
Feb 25th, 2004, 05:26 PM
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I find it interesting that you are leaving in less than 3 weeks and have no clue about what to see.

Having said that, wojazz3, Bill, has provided an excellent itinerary for just 7 days. You'll enjoy the pubs and scenery following this route.
Budman is offline  
Feb 25th, 2004, 08:29 PM
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Yeah, I am a kind of fly by the seat traveler, it has always worked for me in the past.

Bill thank you so much for the great info, I think I am going to follow it pretty close, it sounds great! I cannot wait!

If anyone else has thoughts, please feel free, otherwise Bill's ideas sound good to me.

Thanks again!
paqrtravis is offline  
Feb 26th, 2004, 08:20 AM
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At least you had better sense than I did and actually asked for advice for your 1st trip. I didn't and had a day from Hell to start out. Then again, if I hadn't ended up where I did, I wouldn't have found O'Sullivan's in Crookhaven and the amazing afternoon that followed would have never happened. Sometimes bad plans end up creating great experiences.

wojazz3 is offline  
Feb 27th, 2004, 08:24 AM
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Ireland's a great place to fly by the seat of your pants (only, call them trousers here or else people will think you're referring to your underwear).

I love just exploring and driving here. I was out the other day and took 2.5 hours rather than 1 hour to get back home because I just felt like exploring. That trip didn't yield up anything exciting, but 80% usually do lead me to something new and interesting.
Ann41 is offline  
Feb 27th, 2004, 10:44 AM
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 244
My first trip to Ireland included an itinerary of the following:

2 nights in Killarney
1 night in Waterford
3 nights in Shannon
2 nights in Galway
2 nights in Connemara
4 nights in Dublin

I didn't really need the night in Waterford, but I think there was really no other place to stay.

Places I particularly loved were Blarney Castle (with the medieval banquet) on our first day, the entire Ring of Kerry, Muckross House/Abbey, Waterford crystal factory because I'm a collector, Glendalough, Monasterboice, Newgrange, and as many churches and castles as you can cram in!
Jun04ItalyHoneymoon is offline  
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