Dingle or Galway as a Base

Oct 29th, 2005, 07:25 AM
Original Poster
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Dingle or Galway as a Base

I am planning a trip to Shannon Ireland, from Nov. 10-14. Since it is my first trip and a relatively short one I was told to stay in either Dingle or Galway. We are 20 something graduate students looking to explore old, quaint Ireland, check out the bar scene and spend some time with the locals if possible. In essence we are looking for day trips consisting or Irish landscape, castles, old towns, and other sights and nights filled with pub outings. Therefore any recommendations on whether to stay in Galway or Dingle would be greatly appreciated. Also if you have any recommendations on B&Bs, that would also be helpful. Thanks in advance.
mobine is offline  
Oct 29th, 2005, 05:17 PM
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suelh is offline  
Oct 30th, 2005, 02:46 AM
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I'm sure the person who told you to stay in Dingle or Galway wasn't aware of this happening: It's a 4-day Trad Irish nusic festival scheduled for Nov 10-14.

You can also daytrip to Galway on BusEireann (less than an hour). Check http://www.buseireann.ie for sched's. You might even be able to make it to Doolin and return via Galway.

It may be difficult to find a place to stay in Ennis during the festival. We stayed at Rose Cottage B&B in Ennis our last trip: ask for a room away from the pub.

In May,'03 (Ennis' Spring Music Festival) I stayed at the Abbey Tourist Hostal
There's frequent bus service between Shannon airport & Ennis. There's one that leaves the airport around 9:30 AM We caught an 8:30 AM Bus for our 11:00 AM flight.
NEDSIRELAND is offline  
Oct 30th, 2005, 06:50 AM
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Dingle - I would give a miss. I visited recently, and thought I was in Blackpool with maybe 20 tour coaches lined up along the promenade, and more tourists than locals. I thought it was expensive: Fish & chips 10 Euro, (appeared to be a uniform price agreed among the establishments ) and a pint of Guinness @3.45 Euro, is only 5 euro cheaper than I can get in my Dublin local. Anywhere in Clare is definitely a better bet. A pity, because Dingle is a Gaeltacht( Irish Speaking )Area, and was beautiful before it was commercialised.
Have a good trip.
crumus is offline  
Oct 30th, 2005, 01:05 PM
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I would go for Galway the university city full of young blood and plenty of night life. www.galwaytourism.ie
B&B look at www.bedandbreakfast.net
also have a look at www.goireland.ie and for public transport www.buseireann.ie (enquire about the special tourist ticket)
Be cool.
CU is offline  
Oct 30th, 2005, 01:08 PM
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Sorry a small correction.
B&B should be www.bedandbreakfastireland.net
CU is offline  
Oct 30th, 2005, 01:38 PM
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About an hour drive north of shannon airport I think; better for your age group as a univ. town; lost to see, good pubs and bookstores, places to stay -- you can day trip to Aran islands, Ennis, etc.
annw is offline  
Oct 30th, 2005, 02:48 PM
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I love both places, but would recommend Galway for someone your age on a short trip.

Galway's a university town, so there's a very lively, active pub scene. And, you'd have a number of good day trip options...Connemara, the Burren, coast of Clare, etc.

Will you have a car? Galway has a great tourist office that can arrange day tours, although I don't know how active (or inactive) things might be there in mid-November.

I stay at Four Seasons B&B on College Road when in Galway.
MaryZ is offline  
Oct 31st, 2005, 05:13 AM
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As Grad students, I don't know if you will qualify for Student Discount Bus Eireann 'Irish Rover' passes. There is a BusEireann counter inside Shannon airport: couldn't hurt to ask ...

I told you earlier about Ennis' Trad Irish music festival; but if you're determined to stay in Galway or Dingle I think Galway is the better of the two. It's a 'hub' for BusEireann for Buses to Connemara (west), to Ennis, Shannon or Limerick City and all the way to Cork. But if you get down to the southwest, expect some windy and rainy weather.

Once, in November, I was staying at the Royal George hotel in Limerick city. It was raining very heavy with gale force winds. In the morning when I went to check out, there were three people from the UK - a large piece of slate had blown off the roof of the hotel and 'trashed' their rental car in the Hotel's parking lot. The storm was so severe that ferry service to the UK had been cancelled.

You could conceivably encounter that type of weather on Dingle Peninsula
NEDSIRELAND is offline  
Oct 31st, 2005, 06:43 AM
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In defense of Dingle, It is quite crowded in the summer months through September, but in the off season, not so crowded. You won't see loads of tour buses in many places in November. I found that the going rate for a pint in rural Ireland was usually about 3.35, so 3.45 isn't really gouging. I doubt Galway is much less. I don't think .10 per pint is worth making a travel decision over.

That said, Galway is a young town and would probably be a bit more fun for some 20 somethings. If you like trad music, Ned's suggestion for the festival is good for a night of music. It would be difficult to get a room, especially at this late date.

There is nothing particularly quaint about Galway, but if you drive west along the coast you will find yourself in Irish speaking Ireland and some neat little fishing villages. The will be very quiet at that time of year. You could make it out to Roundstone and Clifden and perhaps stop and see Kylemore.

Getting inside castles in November will be a bit harder. Bunratty will be open (near Shannon) but Dunguaire and Athenry are closed for the season. If you wanted to stay at a castle, Cregg Castle is just up the road from Galway, it's a neat old building and sometimes the owners are there to play music in the evenings. Not always the case in the off season though. www.creggcastle.com.

The Irish landscape in Connemara is different from the famous 40 shades of green that many people associate with Ireland. It is quite mountainous, there are certainly some green fields but it's more of a blend of landscapes. This is a beautiful section of the country but a bit more stark.

The days will be pretty short at that time of year so you will have plenty of time to enjoy the pubs.

Have fun.


wojazz3 is offline  
Oct 31st, 2005, 08:45 AM
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Another vote for the Galway area. Too bad you can't make your trip longer; there are lots of areas for day trips in the vicinity.
hopingtotravel is offline  
Oct 31st, 2005, 08:55 AM
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And another vote for Galway area. As much as I love Dingle, I think I'd rather be in a larger place mid-nov.
chatham is offline  

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