7 days in Ireland

Jan 7th, 2015, 09:25 AM
  #1  
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7 days in Ireland

Hi there!

My Husband are planning a 7 day, 7 night trip to Ireland in late May. We are flying into Dublin and out of Shannon, but I don't even know where to start as far as where to stay. Everyone seems to have a different opinion. We are interested in doing half of the southern loop and particularly interested in the southwest and the west. We are in our late twenties early thirties and interested in food, beer, music, history and nature. Basically, want to spend our days being active and our nights eating good food, drinking good beer, and listening to live music. Another thing to consider is that we want to avoid tourist traps. People keep recommending places like Adare or Kinsale, but then I hear that now they are too popular to be enjoyable. Also, which tourist traps are still worth seeing? Any recommendations would be greatly appreciated!

Thanks!
jen_powers_75 is offline  
Jan 8th, 2015, 08:59 AM
  #2  
 
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The reason "tourist traps" are popular is that they are a lot of fun. Tourists spread the word that this or that place is a great place to visit. I would visit the "tourist traps" but also allow time to get off the beaten paths. On our trip we only did the touristy things but still had a fantastic time. My favorite traps were Cliffs of Moher, Inishmor, Galway, Killarney, Giant's Causeway, Dingle, and Dublin. I can't wait for my next visit. I will probably go to most of the same places again.
bean11 is offline  
Jan 8th, 2015, 10:32 AM
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True, bean11. The reason they are popular is that they are enjoyable.
jaja is offline  
Jan 8th, 2015, 11:34 AM
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Certain "tourist traps" are certainly worth your time--and I liked all the ones that bean 11 listed.

When we get to the topic of Adare, though, you'll see some camps on this and other forums who are saying, "No, no, no, no." Lord Dunraven basically created the darn place in "ye olde" style in the 19th century, so it was sort of a fake town from the get-go.

I found it to be far more tourist central than scenic. Others love the place. Totally up to you.

As to your interests...

We spent most of our four visits to Ireland cycling and drinking beer while listening to trad music. In fact, we devoted one entire week to nothing BUT drinking beer and trad music. We didn't cycle or even change cities that time.

(Yes, we did change pubs. 3x a day.)

The key thing to remember in planning your trip is that it always takes twice as long to drive anywhere as you might think. In other words, limit your stopping points and max out your enjoyment.

If you REALLY want to max out your music experience, research online towns that have a lot of pubs with trad music sessions and spend one or two nights in those areas.

Our experience:
Even though our trad music friends insisted there was none to be had in Dublin, we had a fantastic time there.

The West Coast is where it was easy to enjoy trad music. Towns that pop to mind for trad:
Ennis (not a pretty place but endless great trad)
Doolin
Galway
Clifton

Vaughn's in Kilfenora often has set dancing, and we've been lucky enough to have been there twice.

And do remember when driving that alcohol limits are .05!

Happy planning.
AZ
AlessandraZoe is offline  
Jan 12th, 2015, 10:01 AM
  #6  
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Thanks for all of the great info! There have been some changes to our plan. We are going to fly in and out of Shannon and want to do a west/southwest roadtrip. We still have 7 nights. I think we have narrowed down the counties that we want to visit. Galway, Clare, and Kerry. Please let me know if you think we should fit another one in there. Sad we will be missing Kilkenny, Cork and Mayo. Now I am having trouble mapping out an efficient route/itinerary. Any ideas? Thanks!
jen_powers_75 is offline  
Jan 12th, 2015, 10:26 AM
  #7  
 
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So you aren't taking in Dublin as originally planned? As we did arriving Dublin and departing from Shannon. But anyway some sense in less driving for more enjoying the west country. Our trip included near Limerick Bunratty Castle including a banquet and Craggaunoween (village), then heading north Kilmacduagh, the Burren, Cliffs of Moher, Coole Park. Thoor Ballylee (poet Yeats home), Galway Bay. And to the south staying in Killarney, touring Dingle Penninsula, and enjoying Celtic music in several pubs. You'll love the west country.
Ozarksbill is offline  
Jan 12th, 2015, 11:01 AM
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You've a good basic plan. Ennis in Clare has lots of music options, and so does Doolin, which is well known for its music scene. I love Kenmare in Kerry, above the (to me, touristy) Killarney. O'Donnabhain's in Kenmare is a fantastic Victorian B&B and pub, btw.

IF it helps, check out my trip reports - I've been to Ireland 5 times, three of them in the general area of your planned trip. Hopefully it can help!
GreenDragon is offline  
Jan 12th, 2015, 03:26 PM
  #9  
 
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I think you are getting some love here on your revised plan.

I know, I know, it's decisions you be after. Yes, you are landing in Shannon (which is basically a spit from Ennis) and you are trying to do both south and north of the place and have no idea in which direction you'll turn.

You'll get there.

Here's what I'd do for starters:
I'd recover my jet lag in Ennis, whether you head north or south from there for your trip itinerary. That way, you can get a trad session or two (or three)around your time adjustments without driving.

Happy planning,
AZ
AlessandraZoe is offline  
Jan 13th, 2015, 09:43 AM
  #10  
 
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Copy and paste from my answer elsewhere.

You want Music good craic bit of beer and some good food without paying a fortune for a chiefs quirks. With the Fledh http://www.fleadhnua.com/ on in Ennis then you could use the town as a base for your Clare points Ennis, Doolin, not sure why Doonbeg unless for the Golf (not sure its an open course since the Trump takeover) http://www.worldgolf.com/courses/ireland/countyclare/

From Ennis to Dingle for a night (or more?) calling at Adare and Listowel on the way before taking the Connor Pass and dropping into Dingle Town.

If you want to go to the Skelligs then stay the night in Portmagee the boats go out at 10am weather permitting and the town is a "quaint" fishing Port just like Dingle used to be 35 years ago. http://www.portmagee.net/ What if St Rick had visited here instead?

Kenmare or Killarney are great touring bases for the whole of Kerry but Kenmare is a little smaller and better placed for Beara which although the same size as the Dingle Peninsula has far fewer visitors and even less % of gift shops. Great place to dirty the hiking boots.
Tony2phones is offline  
Jan 16th, 2015, 11:18 AM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
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Galway city has such good music and culture. Check out a website for roisin dubh it is a music venue.
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