Day trips from one location in Ireland?

Mar 18th, 2006, 11:36 AM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 93
Day trips from one location in Ireland?

We are traveling to Europe mid-July for almost three weeks, and our last (and fourth) location is Ireland. We will be flying in to either Shannon or Dublin on July 30 and flying home from Dublin on August 4. After the previous two weeks split among Paris, Rome and Venice, I am trying to decide whether it would be better to find a central location in Ireland and take day trips, or move from town to town. My concern is travel weariness at the end of our trip, and which plan would allow us to most enjoy the last 6 days of our trip. My goals for the Ireland leg of the trip are seeing some of the beautiful coastal sites like the Cliffs of Moher as well as some of the wonderful culture of Irish towns and villages.

Thanks so much for any advice--this site has already been extremely helpful for planning the other legs of our trip.

desertgirl is offline  
Mar 18th, 2006, 12:41 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 3,590
Hmmm, travel weariness after touring Parish, Rome, Venice? ? Yes, that's very likely no matter what. Best plan is to arr. Dublin and lv. Shannon or vice versa if you have a week. You could thus rent a car and meander west or east. Still you won't see half of what you might wish. Yes, the West Coast will impress you and so much more like castles and history. But maybe you do simply want to settle down in one place and be content with only a taste of Ireland!

ozarksbill
Ozarksbill is offline  
Mar 18th, 2006, 12:46 PM
  #3  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 93
Thanks, Ozarksbill. Since we already have the return flight booked from Dublin, that would mean flying into Shannon fom Italy. If we rent a car in Shannon, what city/town would you recommend we "park" in for a few days? I'm guessing we will spend the last couple of days in Dublin before flying out.
desertgirl is offline  
Mar 18th, 2006, 01:29 PM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 3,916
If you fly into Shannon, Galway would make a good base. The Cliffs of Moher and the Burren to the south. Connemara to the north. Traditional music sessions in the pubs at night. For a leisurely tour of Connemara, you might want to break up the circle route with a night in Westport. You could visit the Aran Islands. Another option: You could spend your first night in Ennis (good traditional music sessions there, too), see the Cliffs of Moher and the Burren the next day, and then "park" yourselves in Galway.
TimS is offline  
Mar 18th, 2006, 01:30 PM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 252
Hi desertgirl

I have been to Ireland twice, once for 10 days and once for 11 days and I would not advise that you use a base for day trips. On both trips we never stayed for more than 2 nights in one place. The roads in Ireland, especially in the west and southwest are narrow and winding with a lot of farm traffic. What seems like a short distance may take some time to drive. 20 miles can take an hour of drive time.

While I did not like moving hotels and B&Bs so often, the backtracking would have eaten up time to see more of this beautiful country.

I have been to many countries in Europe, but Ireland is truly special. You will have a wonderful time.
roadlesstraveled is offline  
Mar 18th, 2006, 02:23 PM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 588
Hi Desertgirl,

I want to advocate for staying in one place - but ultimately, it must be right for you and your preferences.

My husband, daughter and I rented a self catering cottage for a week between Doolin and Ballyvaughan. Even though this was our first trip, we didn't want to drive around like crazy, but wanted to really experience one area and enjoy it thoroughly.

We were attracted to this area because of the Burren and Cliffs of Mohr, the traditional music and because we found a cottage with the most fantastic view of the sea and the Aran Islands.

We loved our time there - every evening after our days' adventures we would build a peat fire in the fireplace, put on the great CDs stocked by our host and watch the sun sink under the water's edge on the horizen.

We had great experiences - saw a marvelous (renowned) local teller, Eddie Lenihan, who had us seeing faeries behind every tree for the rest of the week. Graciously gave way to the cows on the back roads (not that we had any choice). Found lots of local pubs, eateries and shops. Walked the Burren, saw magnificant rainbows, cheered for the folks in the St. Patrick's Day parade in Doolin.

If you're looking for a deep experience, rather than lots of sight-seeing after three marvelous weeks, it would "put the foam on the pint." (or whatevery you're supposed to say when you drink Guinness.)
SusanEva is offline  
Mar 18th, 2006, 03:01 PM
  #7  
CU
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 374
www.railtours.ie will sort you out.
CU is offline  
Mar 18th, 2006, 04:15 PM
  #8  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 93
Good support for each of the plans here. Looks like more research is in order. Our children are 17 and 14 and should be able to withstand some time in the car, but I agree return trips might use up precious time. SusanEva, may I ask the name of the cottage you stayed at during your trip?

If we stay 2 nights in each of 3 different locations, we should do alright, especially if the hospitality in Ireland is as good as I've heard.

Thanks for all the tips. Any other recommendations for locations to settle in for a couple of nights are welcome. Also, since we fly out of Dublin, Can anyone recommend a Dublin hotel or B and B for a family? We will need two rooms.
desertgirl is offline  
Mar 18th, 2006, 04:20 PM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 71
SusanEva..more details aboout that cottage, please!!!
StLSusan is offline  
Mar 18th, 2006, 04:53 PM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 588


Lots of choices. We chose Ocean View from one of the self-catering web sites for Clare Co. Pretty sure you must rent by the week.

http://www.doolincoastalcottages.com/
SusanEva is offline  
Mar 18th, 2006, 04:55 PM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 748
desertgirl,
We stayed in Doolin in a B & B called Castle View and found it to be a great home base for touring the Burren, Cliffs of Moher, and a day trip to the Aran Islands. This was a number of years ago, but we found it to be a delightful, relaxing place.

We flew out of Dublin and stayed in a B & B to the north of the city, in the town of Malahide. Since the airport is to the north of Dublin, it was easier to get to the airport from Malahide than fighting our way through city traffic. If you want to go into Dublin, you can leave your car behind and take the train into the city.
nevermind is offline  
Mar 19th, 2006, 01:57 AM
  #12  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 2,635
I agree with TimS' recommendation for Galway but I would try to avoid the College Road B&B's and stay out in Salthill. It's a good location to kick back and relax after all that touring.
Also, on weekends in Summer, several of the Pubs in Galway's Pedestrian area have matinee Trad Irish music sessions (including Taaffes and the Pub across from it. They have chalkboards listing times for music.


NEDSIRELAND is offline  
Mar 19th, 2006, 03:47 AM
  #13  
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 403
"My concern is travel weariness at the end of our trip, and which plan would allow us to most enjoy the last 6 days of our trip. My goals for the Ireland leg of the trip are seeing some of the beautiful coastal sites like the Cliffs of Moher as well as some of the wonderful culture of Irish towns and villages."

Center youself in Killarney and take days trips on busses to Ring of Kerry, Dingle Peninsula and Gap of Dunmoe. Then bus to Galways and take days trips.

Whatever you do, don't drive. It's a nightmare. Just take busses.
lmhornet is offline  
Mar 19th, 2006, 07:18 AM
  #14  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 3,916
In contrast to imhornet, I enjoyed driving in Ireland. It helped that I had someone to act as navigator so I could concentrate on the road. The freedom to stop and take a walk or sit and admire a view whenever one wishes is delightful. A detailed map, like the Michelin Ireland map, is essential. (You can buy it at amazon.com.) Road signs can be too few and too late so expect to get lost once in a while. But that's part of the adventure. Double your estimate on the driving time from point A to point B. Expect to average no better than 35 mph on national roads and a lot less on secondary roads. Do NOT drive in Dublin (too congested and no place to park). Turn in your car at the airport and take a bus into the city.
TimS is offline  
Mar 19th, 2006, 08:03 AM
  #15  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 93
NEDSIRELAND,
Thanks for the Galway tip. Salthill looks fairly close to Galway--is there entertainment (music) in Salthill in the evening, or would we likely want to go into Galway? Also, do you know of any good accomodations in Salthill for four? (We will probably need a 2 bedroom cottage or two B&B rooms.) Thanks so much for all the tips--it really helps!
desertgirl is offline  
Mar 19th, 2006, 03:18 PM
  #16  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 5,073
I second (or third!) the suggestion to use Galway as your base. I did the same for a week some years back, and after spending a day seeing Galway City and relaxing, each day I did a different trip: Connemara, Aran Islands (Inishmore), Cliffs of Moher/Burren. I stayed in Salthill as well in a B&B right on the bay, which was just gorgeous. I forget the name now but it was a nice walk 15-20 mins. or so to the center of town through the Claddagh area.
amyb is online now  
Related Topics
Thread
Original Poster
Forum
Replies
Last Post
DeborahAnn
Europe
8
Aug 20th, 2016 04:34 AM
mrswass
Europe
5
Apr 20th, 2016 08:12 PM
Reggs
Europe
4
Feb 21st, 2008 11:15 PM
emeraldeyes
Europe
16
Feb 16th, 2006 02:14 PM
SharonLee
Europe
8
May 13th, 2004 08:55 AM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy -

FODOR'S VIDEO

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 04:36 PM.