April trip to Ireland

Jan 16th, 2005, 05:38 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 31
April trip to Ireland

My husband and I along with our 18 year old son are taking a trip to Ireland mid April of this year. We will be flying into Shannon on a Sun. and out of Dublin on Tues giving us 10 days in the country. We have never been to Ireland, quite frankly, neither my son or I have ever been out of the country, so this is going to be a whole new experience. We know well be visiting family of my mothers in Castlerae but other than that nothing has been decided. After reading so many of the questions and responses on this site Ive noticed how much great information all of you have and I would definitely appreciate any help or ideas for things that will be interesting especially traveling with an 18 yr. old.
My son is a guitar player and loves a wide range of music so that will definitely play a part in the trip. Were planning to stay in B&Bs and neither my husband or son have the need I do for planning so a lot of it will probably be spur of the moment. I however need a little more structure, or at least an idea. I see from many of your terrific responses most of you do a lot of planning long before this point for a trip like this so I hope you can give me some ideas on what we should definitely see. Thanks for any help.
pbjhhunt is offline  
Jan 16th, 2005, 11:14 PM
Join Date: Feb 2003
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pbjhhunt: you will love Ireland! My husband and I are going to Ireland in April as well but it not be a pleasure trip per se, we are moving my mother who lives in Ireland back to CA.
First of all go onto www.irelandexpert.com and Pat Preston will give you lots of advice and can help with an itinerary.
I would say to have breakfast at Bunratty village after arrival (if early AM) then drive to Cliffs of Moher.
Drive on to Galway and spend 2 or 3 nights there (maybe a trip to Aran Islands and day trips to Cliften, etc.)
On to Co. Mayo to Westport (Lots of great musical pubs there, Matt Malloy owns one (one of the Cheiftains).
Son can climb Croagh Patrick (you all can for that matter), great views!

Actually I've said Mayo because if you are talking about Castlerea in Co. Roscommon (my mother lives in Ballaghaderreen, Co. Roscommon-about 10 miles away!!) it would be close enough.
There is not a lot of "first time stuff" in Roscommom-in Strokestown there is the Famine Museum though.
My favorites are also The Rock of Cashel in Co. Tipperary and The Dingle area but, since you are going to Roscommon (?) you might check into Donegal for touring as well....hear lots of great things about it-its been years since I've been.
Best bet is to go onto the irelandexpert website-Pat will adivse you better than I can!
But, I very seldom hear about anyone going to my family's part of Ireland!

Shadow is offline  
Jan 17th, 2005, 04:06 PM
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I'll certainly check out Irelandexpert and you've given some good starting ideas. Your were correct also, I did mean co. Roscommon. My Grandfather was from Castlerae and there is still family there that my Mother corresponds with. I believe there's also a cousin in Dublin I've been told to see. So we'll definitely be traveling around alot while we're there. The 10 days won't seem like near enough time but it'll have to do. Sorry your next visit isn't for pleasure but I'm sure you'll enjoy having your Mother closer. Again, thanks for the start.
pbjhhunt is offline  
Jan 18th, 2005, 02:54 PM
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hi pbjhhunt - i have lots of pics and things about donegal on my website welovedonegal.com and for your son, there is a new rock school just started in donegal and i believe they will be having lots of events for teenagers to join in. i can get you their email address if you would like. in april ireland won't be too busy and you could just travel around at will and book in when you find somewhere you like - that always seems the best if you can do it. hope you have a great holiday!
welovedonegal is offline  
Jan 18th, 2005, 04:07 PM
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 9
PBJHUNT~How lucky for you to be going in April. We've been there twice. The Irish are very friendly and helpful. The first year we based in Elphin, Co. Roscommon staying at the home of a frien in the states. We travelled to Co. Donegal in our rented car. How exciting!! Mind the curbs!The next year we "winged it". Travelling when & where we wanted. We stayed at Guesthouses & B&B's without any trouble. Accommodations everywhere were comfortable (you're asked to see the rooms before commiting yourself). We'll go again this Sept. Have fun, there's so much to see.
rd2go is offline  
Jan 18th, 2005, 04:37 PM
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to welovedonegal I would be interested in the rock school - josh has expressed alot of interest in rock climbing over the years and i'm afraid of heights so we haven't - my husband and he refuse to go on a trip to do that without me. to rd2go - we will definitely mind the curbs - the idea of driving on the left throws me a bit but i'm sure i'll figure it out when my husband doesn't want to drive. as least we're going with an automatic to make it only one new thing to learn! winging it is probably how most of it will be. any planning will be by me and they'll ignore most of what i say until we get there. camping is my son's favorite vacation because it involves no set to do's so i'll probably make them crazy with my lists. i do want to be sure we see as much as we can without making them nuts as this was my sons idea for a trip during his senior year. he can't even tell us why - just that he wants to go to ireland. part may be just because we've talked about it for so long, and part may be because we still have family there. i just feel lost looking at all of places to go since we only have 10 days. thanks for all input!
pbjhhunt is offline  
Jan 18th, 2005, 05:34 PM
Join Date: Dec 2004
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hi pbjhhunt - sorry, i didn't make myself clear. the school of rock is for rock MUSIC which i thought your guitar playing son might be interested in. i too am afraid of heights - took greek friends to slieve league in donegal (highest sea cliffs in europe) and was terrified and enthraaled all at once! there is indoor wall climibing in gartan activity centre in donegal and from there you can do kayak/canooing too. (there is of course lots of hill and rock climbing in donegal too - we have many high hills!!!).

as far as driving goes, plan your routes beforehand (use; www.aaroadwatch.ie/routes/ - it's excellent).

rd2go: curbs? what curbs? country roads are a bit crazy! and by the way, with may, i always recommend september for trips to ireland. kind of a bit assured of fair weather.

pbjhhunt: try to go galway, sligo, donegal, antrim coast, belfast, and back to dublin - the alternative route of ireland!

welovedonegal is offline  
Jan 19th, 2005, 01:32 AM
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don't mind me - it was a long day. i guess the mention in the one post of climbing just threw me. he definitely would love the other too.
pbjhhunt is offline  

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