Am I Crazy...

May 22nd, 2005, 12:29 PM
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Am I Crazy... try and plan a trip to Ireland with
my In-Laws and our small children? At the time of travel they will be 11 and 9 years of age.

Here is the deal: I would like to treat my in-laws to a trip to Ireland next summer to celebrate their 40th wedding anniversary. However, after reading some of the posts it seems like it may not be as much fun and exciting for the kids as it will be for the adults. It just seems like you have to travel so much to really experience Ireland.

We would like to fly into and out of Shannon because it is close my wifeís' family heritage. However, I'm afraid the kids may grow tiresome of all the hectic travel, long distances between sights, etc.

So my question becomes: Do we have to travel to so many places to experience "the true or real Ireland"? For example, can't we just stay in one location (Hotel or Castle) for the entire trip and just make day trips to and from the hotel, never traveling more than say, 1.5 hours each day in any one direction? Are there not large hotels or castles that can provide daily trips or activities that would be just as much fun?

I guess another way to put it is if the forum had to choose one city, castle, location in Ireland that would give us a good taste and feel for the country and it's people, what or where would it be?

Please keep in mind that we would only be staying 5 days.

Thanks in advance!


frank444 is offline  
May 22nd, 2005, 12:37 PM
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Frank, I don't know Ireland at all, but I think you would be crazy NOT to stay in one place. It seems like the only sensible way to do a short trip like this one.

Have fun.
tuscanlifeedit is offline  
May 22nd, 2005, 01:32 PM
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Frank, there are several areas from which you could base yourself and do daytrips. You could plop in or near Dublin, Galway, Ennis,or several other cities and have a grand time.

If your in-law's family is from the Shannon area, there is more than enough to experience within daytrips there to make everyone, including the kids, happy. The Cliffs of Mohar, Bunratty Park (and the Mideival Feast)and The Burren are all very drivable.

One of the hardest lessons I had to learn was that "less is more" and that if you travel as though you will return to see "the rest of it" you will indeed see more of it the first time around.

Happy planning!
May 22nd, 2005, 01:36 PM
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frank444, I think this is an excellent question. I, too, have considered visiting Ireland (surname's Kane and Connors), but without good public transportation, and the hellish driving conditions, this trip is always on the back burner. We would also do Shannon in-and-out.

Hope you get a good response. I'll be watching.
i_am_kane is offline  
May 22nd, 2005, 02:20 PM
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Veteran of six trip SO FAR and our seventh is coming up in less than two weeks. So far we have split 50/50 between 'planting' and continuous touring. We took my wife's parents over for two weeks in '99 and stayed in one place for most of that time. We did one overnighter to a village about 50 miles away and two nights out to see Dublin. My father-in-law was 82 at the time and quite visually impaired, while my mother-in-law (then 75) walks with some difficulty. While it was hard on my wife and I, have no doubt that it was one of the best things we have ever done.

This trip, we are renting a house in Killorglin (half way between Dingle and Killarney. I will post a trip report upon my return, that you might wish to review.

'Finding' Ireland can be done without driving very much, or very far. If you keep your eyes and mind open, it will find you.

Itallian_Chauffer is offline  
May 22nd, 2005, 03:54 PM
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Thanks Forum for the advice! Another question: How far is Killarney from Shannon?
frank444 is offline  
May 22nd, 2005, 04:13 PM
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5 days is not alot of time so here is my idea which you can feel free to disregared.
1. Land at Shannon and drive to the Cliffs, about and hour, walk around, about another half hour and dive to Killarney, about 2-1/2 hours if you drive slow and stop for lunch. Two nights in Killareny, gap of Dunloe, Lakes, Nat. Park etc. A little too much big city for me but you only have five days. Drive south on the N-71 to Kenmare (great Mt. Views) two nights in Kenmare, do the ROk if you must or wander round the south west peninsulas, drive north to the airport and spend the last night around Bunratty. a little touristy but the park is not bad for an afternoon and there are three good pubs and good shopping and a short drive to Shannon. Have fun
JOHNOD is offline  
May 22nd, 2005, 04:19 PM
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frank-- just a word of encouragement: the times and opportunities when different generations will be able to gather and be able to celebrate such special life milestones in such memorable fashion will become few and far between as life goes by. If you need to home base in one spot and take it from there, then do what you have to do. Shannon sounds like a good choice. Best of luck!
Viajero2 is offline  
May 22nd, 2005, 05:38 PM
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Posts: 1,647 places it at 82.4 miles, on the N18-N20-N21-N23-N22-N71 route (through Abbeyfeale). They say 1 hour 53 minutes, so I would guess closer to 2.5 to 2.75 hours.
Itallian_Chauffer is offline  
May 23rd, 2005, 05:20 AM
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We took our two sons to Scotland at age 9 and 12. They enjoyed visiting castles and ruins there and our castle stays.
You can rent videos from the library and watch them with your children now (or picture books) and try to find out what they want to see.
I am planning our first trip to Ireland and think it could be a great idea for your family to spend 2-3 days in Killarney area. You can do gap of Dunloe and Ross castle on one of the days; then you can split for a day - your in-Laws can take organized Ring of Kerry tour and you can enjoy the Muckross Farm and House with your kids.
Bunratty Park (and the Mideival Feast) could be a winner for the younger generation.
Best of luck!
travfirst is offline  
May 23rd, 2005, 12:25 PM
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There are plenty of things to interest pre-teens in Ireland. In the Shannon Region a trip to Bunratty Castle and Folk Park would be must. The Cliffs and the Burren are amazing when you realize how unique they are. Be sure to include some ruins on your visit.

Not sure what part of the Shannon Region you are staying in. If you are in the Lough Derg/Killaloe/Nenagh/Limerick area I have a list of sites I can send you.
yesiree100 is offline  
May 23rd, 2005, 05:02 PM
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Great stuff! I can see I came to the right place to ask this question.

Another question: Have any of the forum stayed at The Killarney Park Hotel? This looks like a place that we may want to stay if visiting the Killarney region.
frank444 is offline  
May 23rd, 2005, 06:23 PM
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frank444: I've stayed at The Killarney Park Hotel and it is lovely.
chatham is offline  
May 24th, 2005, 07:40 AM
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Ok. I let my wife read the posts and see the hotel (Killarney Park)and we think we may want to base in Killarney after seeing the "The Cliffs" on our drive from Shannon. Also, we would stay in Bunratty on the last day and night. This means four days in Killarney. Is there enough to do around this region for this amount of time? JOHNOD mentioned Kenmare. Is this drivable from Shannon and back in one day or should I take his advice and stay in Kenmare for two days?
frank444 is offline  
May 24th, 2005, 12:26 PM
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Frank, in my opinion two nights in Killarney is plenty. It is getting to be a city. It is a short hop through the Nat. Park and over the Mts. to Kenmare. Its a great drive and views are spectacular in the Mts. Kenmare will will put you in a position to visit the peninsulas (real Ireland). The drive from Kenamare to Shannon will be a good morning leaving you plenty of time for lunch and visit to the Park. My first day this year I am arriving in Shannon on the 22 of June and driving south to Baltimore, way past Kenamre and I Plan on 5 hours with a stop for lunch in Glengarriff. The southwest coast is not to be missed. Have fun
JOHNOD is offline  
May 24th, 2005, 03:28 PM
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Frank -I'm probably the one who is crazy, not you. We are taking all ages on our trip July 1, and will have eight kids in the 6-12 age range, as well as one pre-schooler,an infant,two teens,three college kids, and eight adults in 30's and 40's and 70's - so if you check back in mid-July, I hope to report back on what appealed and did not appeal to the various ages. Everyone on this site has been so helpful - just wish we had time to incorporate ALL the great ideas. Have fun with your planning,
GmaMcD is offline  
May 24th, 2005, 04:17 PM
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LOL!!! Lordy Moses! GmaMcD, good luck. I would love to read your post when you return in July. Can't wait.

Thanks to all that left messages and advice. I wish you all happy travels.



frank444 is offline  
May 25th, 2005, 05:16 AM
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Frank -

For 4 nights in Killarney, I suggest looking into a 3 bedroom self-catering cottage. There are a few near the Killarney Park Hotel. I can recommend Killarney Lakeland Cottages,, they are a bit rustic compared to the Killarney Park Hotel, but the kids might have a good time. My daughter loves it there (she was 8 when we started staying there, sheís now 16, and we stayed there in February while she was looking at Universities). I know some of the hotels in Killarney have Cottages on their property, like Castleross, or the Gleneagle Hotel, . Donít be worried about having enough to do in Killarney, the town is great a bit crowded for me in summer, but youíll be staying close by. Donít forget to take a jaunting cart ride around the National Park.

Enjoy your stay.

eyps is offline  
May 25th, 2005, 04:50 PM
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Oh! I forgot one important question. Where can I find a good Rugby Club match in Shannon or Killarney?

I played Rugby (center) for 8 years and now only a spectator due to injuries. However, it would be one of my dreams to see an actual club match in Ireland and drink with the club after the match to share match stories. etc.

Any thoughts? It will be summer so I don't know if their are playing 15's or 7's.

Any thoughts?
frank444 is offline  
May 26th, 2005, 01:44 AM
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For a rugby club frank444: you might try Limerick City. That's not too far from Shannon.
Stop at the Brazen Head Sports Bar on O'Connell at Cecil Street. Someone there should be able to point you in the right direction
NEDSIRELAND is offline  
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