First time in Ireland (Europe)

Sep 5th, 2002, 10:54 AM
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First time in Ireland (Europe)

Help! I am taking my husband on a surprise trip to Ireland in June. We have never traveled abroad. Any ideas on where to go, what to see, etc? Should we do a tour or try to plan it ourselves? Hotel recommendations?
Sep 5th, 2002, 12:06 PM
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Lori: We were in Ireland about 2 years ago and had a marvelous time. Definitely go on your own, not a tour. It is very easy to get around (outside Dublin) and a trip that you want to be on your own time. I went through three A's. They have a drive yourself package which includes air, car, and hotels (or B @ B's). You make your own itinerary and pick the hotels (Dromoland Castle was included). We flew into Dublin, picked up the car, and drove west to Galway. We then drove down the coast and ended up in Dingle. We then stayed in Kilkenny (great), Cork (not great) and drove up through Waterford back to Dublin where we stayed for a few days before returning. Do not miss Dingle. Just get a Pocket Guide from three A's which will cover the main attractions but the greatest thing about Ireland was the countryside. Have a great time. I will try to answer any questions you have.
Sep 13th, 2002, 10:00 AM
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You didn't mention how long you were thinking about going or what types of thing you and your husband are interested in.

If you are only going for a week, I would concentrate on the West Coast of Ireland (the best scenery in my opinion) and definately hit the Cliffs of Mohr (stay in Doolin) and Dingle. Add on the Aran Islands if you have the time.

If you have more than a week, I'd start in Dublin and work my way around. In the East, Wicklow has some beautiful scenery and Bray is a nice coastal town. If you are into ancient history, I would not miss Drogheda, north of Dublin, near Slane.

If you really have time, a trip to the North coast (Northern Ireland) esp Giant's Causeway is worth the trip.
Sep 13th, 2002, 12:17 PM
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Lori: The following sites will be of help for your Ireland trip:

You should definitely do it yourself. Very easy to do on your own and you can get away from the crowds you would be with on a tour bus.
Sep 13th, 2002, 12:29 PM
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Yes do it yourself I have been about 4-5 times. I like doing the entire country in about 3 weeks. Of course you won't see everything but I think you miss something if you stick to the green glens of the south. Getting around the country is very easy I have done this all with public transport.

My favorite areas are The extreme south western corner Dingal(sp), Clare for hiking in the buren and of course along cliffs of Mohr. Use to love the area right around the town of Doolin. Doolin use to be great for music. I also love Connemara it is a tad to the north from Galway if memory serves a tad might be a day or a few hours journey but you can do both on the same trip. Great hiking in this area also. I did most of my trips to Ireland in the early 90's.

In the North you want to see Giant's Causeway, great walking along nearby coastal trails. I have heard great things but have never been to my ancestral home Donegal. You need a rental to traverse this area.

Belfast for a stroll in the Irish and English want-ta be sections. Gives you an up close look at what we all have been reading about over the decades with plenty of murals, etc.
Sep 13th, 2002, 12:31 PM
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I wonder if a surprise trip in August or early September might be better for sunny skies. That is when I usually traveled and it worked out well, yes rain some days but quite often clearing into sun.

Someone else can tell you about June travel that sounds like it would be great to beat the crowds.
Sep 15th, 2002, 07:22 AM
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Sep 15th, 2002, 08:04 AM
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We did Ireland the last week in May twice. Not crowded at all. Fly, drive, and B&B on your own. Maintain the flexibility to change itinerary.

I wish people on this board would stop recommending Dingle as a place to visit. It is becoming overrun by tourists and slowly turning into another Ring of Kerry. Send all the tourists to Dublin.


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