Help with 6 day Ireland itinerary please

Old Sep 12th, 2002, 11:18 AM
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Help with 6 day Ireland itinerary please

My husband and I have decided to do a Sceptre Ireland fly/drive package for 6 nights in November. We will have 6 full days with a car and B&B vouchers. We have a choice to fly RT Shannon or into Shannon out of Dublin.

Right now, we are thinking that it would be best to do the RT so that we don't spend all of our days driving (I know that daylight will be limited). Would it be a huge mistake to skip Dublin?

Also, what would you suggest as a 6 day itinerary from Shannon (first night in Shannon)?

Old Sep 12th, 2002, 11:51 AM
john relias
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I think Dublin is a lovely city with great sites, food and theater. It would be a mistake to miss it. I would also stay at Ballymaloe outside of Cork. It is a great place to stay and the food is the best in Ireland. From there you can also go to Kinsale for the day or just rest at Ballymaloe. If you are staying in Shannon you could also visit Dingle.
Old Sep 12th, 2002, 12:10 PM
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I would not stay in Shannon. You can land in Shannon and 2hrs later be in Doolin and not waste a day of your precious time. It is a wonderful, scenic little town with good musical pubs in the evening(you will love the peat fires!). YOu will be 10-15 min away from the Clifs of Moher which you will want to see and could visit on your way to Doolin. Another favorite place in Ireland was the Dingle Peninsula, making sure to drive Conor Pass and Slea Head Drive. Make sure if you fly out of Dublin to make your B&B reservation now as they have very few B&B's that accept vouchers and you will want accomdations on the bus line or Dart (train) as you will not want to drive into Dublin. See Since you are going in November, other B&B reservations would not be needed. YOu can catch them as you go. I would strongly suggest that you upgrade your car to an automatic. The roads are very narrow and you will be driving on the opposite side of the road and shifting with your opposite hand. Also, make sure you are covered 100% auto coverage as you are responible for anything that happens to the car whether you do it or someone else does. We loved Ireland, have a great time!!
Old Sep 12th, 2002, 12:35 PM
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Dear KEC,

With only 6 nights, I would concentrate on just the south west quadrant of the country and save Dublin for another trip. Doolin, Dingle and Kinsale and last night Adare or Bunratty.

Have fun,

Old Sep 12th, 2002, 01:32 PM
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I would just go RT to Shannon. Dublin would not be a mistake to miss on such a short trip. You are right that you will have short days to work with. Doolin is a nice town to stay in. If the weather is horrible you may not see much of the Cliffs of Moher. I would still dry to get to them. You can also spend a first and/or last night in Bunratty. The castle Banquets are more fun than I thought they would be and the entertainment is excellent.

Have fun


Old Sep 12th, 2002, 01:37 PM
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What would you like to see and do? Tourist attractions? The great outdoors? Traditional music? Cute towns? Shopping?

There is a place for everything. I feel that Bunratty and Adare are a little more touristy than other areas.

The Dingle Peninsula has magnificant scenery and ancient sites. Doolin is perfect for music and, of course, the Cliffs of Moher. Ennis, in Clare, was one of my favorite larger towns, with great restaurants and shopping. You could even make it up to Galway City, with wonderful churches, cultural events, shopping and pubs.

I also recommend the Aran Islands--probably only Inishmore (the "big" island) if you only have 6 days. You can catch a ferry from Rossaveal Harbor (near Galway City) or in Doolin.

If I were going for 6 days, I would spend the first night in Ennis because it is very close to the airport. Then maybe go to Doolin the next day and spend a night. From there you could go to Inishmore for a day--no driving-- (or spend the night and catch the ferry back to the mainland the next morning). If you go back to Doolin that night you could spend the third night in Doolin and leave the next morning. From there you could drive to Galway City and spend a night there. Then, you could either drive around Conemarra, one of my favorite areas, and see Kylemore Abbey, and spend another night in Galway, or go over to Dublin and spend some time there. I have only spent one night in Dublin but 3 months in western Ireland, so I have a biased opinion!

County Kerry (Dingle, Kenmare) is also lovely, but my heart is in Counties Clare and Galway.

Have a wonderful trip--I'm jealous!!
Old Sep 12th, 2002, 02:26 PM
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You got some good advice so far.
When you land in Ireland (probably in the morning local time) you will be tired so it would not be a good idea to not drive very far. (Be sure to get an automatic since they drive on the wrong side of the road.) Stay close to Shannon in either Galway or Adare and rest up for a day. Adare is touristry but nice with saome good pubs and freindly people.

My advice would be to skip Dublin unless there is something there you want to see. Be sure to NOT drive in Dublin!

The roads in Ireland are not as wide as the USA and they consist of mostly secondary roads so driving from place to place will take as much as twice as long as you suspect so try to concentrate in one area. I recommend the west coast of Ireland, especially the Dingle peninsula.

I'm jealous!!

Old Sep 12th, 2002, 03:51 PM
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Hi! It's nice to hear the my husband and I aren't the only ones who had decided to use Sceptre tours. We are going 4 Nov 2002 for 6 nights and are flying to Shannon.

I have family in Ireland not to mention several friends who told my husband and I not to even bothering trying to make it to Dublin on this trip. So we aren't. We are going to Shannon/Limerick, then Cork, Waterford, Kilkenny, Galway, Doolin (Cliffs of Moehr, The Burren, etc).

You're first night will more than likely be in the Two Mile Inn there in Limerick and unless you pay out of pocket for another place, this is how Sceptre does it. From what I have heard this is a very nice place to start your trip from. If you upgrade to the Touch of Romance package, where you stay one night in a castle, that will be your last night in Ireland and close to the airport.

As for the Aran Islands, I have e-mailed the ferry companies there to get schedules, and going in Nov. most only run 2 or 3 days a week at most if that.

We have already booked our trip and I have pretty much planned out what B&Bs we are staying in and I am definately happy and excited to be going.
Old Sep 12th, 2002, 05:26 PM
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Thanks for all of the responses. They are very helpful, and have given us a lot to think about and research.

Krista~ would you mind sharing the information that you have about the Aran islands? Would it be OK if I email you to hear about your trip when you get back (we will be going at the end of Nov.).

Thanks again,
Old Sep 12th, 2002, 06:34 PM
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Feel free to e-mail me, and actually if you want I can e-mail you more of the information I have just from booking our trips. I have a ton of great sites that I have used to get information sent to me from and will be happy to get all of them to you.
If you do this I would ABSOLUTELY recoomned upgrading to the one night in the castle. It's not that expensive and I don't know about you but how many of us can really say we have gotten to stay in a castle? =)

Here are a few websites to get you started. I have several more that are great that I will find for you.

If you go to

You can request an excellent vistors guide that includes a map, calendar of events, and a coupon.

If you are going there to get gifts Blarney Woolen Mills and the Kilkenny Design Center are wonderful. Going to the Design Center was one of my resons to go towards Kilkenny. You can read more about what they have at:

As for the Aran Island Ferries, there are 2 or 3 companies that go there but later in the year they tend to not run. Or if they do it's 3 times a week, once here and back. We were going to go there but decided that we would lose and entire day doing that.
Here are the schedules I could find:
Old Sep 27th, 2002, 06:18 PM
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To KEC and Krista -- We have also just booked the 6-day Sceptre package to Shannon leaving on Nov. 4. What US airport are you leaving from? There were no flights home on the 11th so we have to stay until the 12th (oh darn). We're also staying at the Two Mile Inn the first night and I'm wondering how to fill our first day around Shannon since we have to stay there that night. Any suggestions? This was a last minute booking for us and we've never been to Ireland so we're scrambling for advice on where to go and what to see. I think I've just been talked into skipping Dublin. Since you sound like you've done your homework, I would love to talk to you further about your itinerary if you wouldn't mind emailing me? Thanks!
Old Sep 28th, 2002, 01:32 AM
art phillips
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My wife and I just returned from 10 days in West, SoWest, SoEast then to Dublin. Stay away from the Two Mile Inn if possible. Our double room was dirty, smelly and overall the worst stay. The Great Southern at Shannon airport, 300 feet from the terminal is great at 85 euro for two. However stay at a B&B if possible. There are loads of them in any direction. All our B&B's were better than the Best Western. The owners are very helpful about local sights to see, so get opinions before you trek. We found the locals give good recs on resturants and pubs. Do not be offended at the language you may hear in the pubs. Inspect your auto at checkout and checkin. Budget rented us a damaged car and expect you to pay for all additional damage. Also watch the charges, ours came with a 45 Euro charge because it was full of gas. On your return, if full, do not forget your refund for your full tank. Watch out for the small roads(most all are), until tou feel comfortable(after about 7 days) slow down and pull to the left side and give your opponent a wide (that is a joke) area to pass you, or else you will be cleaning sod out of your tire rims! You may want to note one of the little known driving facts. Look at the hedges and growth along the left side of the road and note the groove cut by rear view mirrows hitting the vegetation! Are you nervous yet? I would not waste too much time on the "touristy" things such as Bunratty at Shannon area. It is ok but to me not worth the time. Galway, Cliffs of Moher(sp), Dingle pens.(try to see "Fungie"), Killarney, Ring of Kerry(after Dingle this was a letdown and time consuming), Dublin is ok for a short period, Powerscourt is worth the time. If you are a bold driver, do not be intimidated about Dublin! There are many public parking areas.There are many other places already given to you and worth the time
Old Sep 28th, 2002, 09:44 AM
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Here's another vote for skipping Dublin if you absolutely have only 6 days.

There is so much to see just in the West and So. West and driving takes double the time you'll likely accustomed to. If you overextend your reach, you'll spend all day, every day, in the car!

Some great places have been named here. I don't know them all but can attest to the Dingle Peninsula, Slea Head, Conor Pass, Killarney (yes a bit touristy), Muckross House.

I would also not do the Ring of Kerry or Cork or Waterford as these are too far away and too time consuming. Ireland has to be done slowly to enjoy the people, the pubs, and the music.
Old Sep 29th, 2002, 12:57 PM
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Lenore, Hey!!! We are leaving that day too! Hehe...we are flying from Baltimore to Boston then to Shannon. We are going to spend our first day in Bunratty going to the Folk park there, maybe going to the dinner at the castle, then head to Limerick since that's actually where we are staying. As for not visiting Waterford because it's too far, it's only 2-3 hours from Cork and that's only 2-3 hours from Limerick, so it's not very far. The whole country itself is rather small compared to what we are used to in the US. We are going to Bunratty/Limerick, then Blarney/Cork, Waterford, Kilkenny, Doolin or Galway, then Ennis and leaving the next day. One of my best friends lives in Kilkenny and thinks this is a great plan time and travel wise.
Old Sep 29th, 2002, 03:37 PM
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I wouldn't go back to Cork or Waterford. It was just a check in the box for Blarney Castle and Waterford Crystal Factory.

We loved Dingle, Killarney, Galway, and Donegal. Also Doolin & the Cliffs.
Old Oct 7th, 2002, 06:31 AM
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Hi everyone,
Thanks for all of the replies! It has given me a lot to think about.

After doing some research, I think I have it narrowed down. With 6 nights, we will spend the first in Limerick at the Two Mile Inn (part of the package), OR we might choose to pay for a B&B somewhere else if it is absolutely worth it. Opinions?

We would like to go to Dingle (maybe 2 nights). And the Doolin area (1) and Galway (1) and the final night somewhere close to the airport (Ennis?).

Does this sound like a good plan? We don't want to be too rushed, and we don't want to spend too much precious time in the car.

Also, is there a website with driving times/distances in Ireland?

For those who have used this package: Did you get a booklet listing the B&Bs from Sceptre? We didn't get one with our tickets. I like to book things in advance (I am a major planner), so I would like to know where I can use the vouchers.

Lenore - we are leaving from NYC.

Old Oct 7th, 2002, 06:41 AM
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Another idea for a good base is the town of Kenmare. Small town with good selection of loding from B&B to 4 star, and easy access to Dingle, Ring of Kerry, Killarney national park. We really liked our two days there and also thought highly of Muckross house and grounds. Some good pubs in Kenmare and it also has a stone circle that you are still allowed to go in and walk about in. Nice little town.
Old Oct 7th, 2002, 07:09 AM
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At that time of year, I think it's a mistake to spend that time in an area that requires decent weather to see all you want to see. Someone mentioned that if it's raining or overcast at all, you're going to see nothing of the Cliffs of Moher, not to mention the hills of Connemara, etc. I'd go to Dublin myself, where you can do out of doors things locally if the weather is good, but plenty of indoor activities if it is not. That time of year through March is just too risky to sink your hopes on "good" weather.

Just my 2 cents, but I've had my share of summer/fall rain on the west coast, and it makes things like Dingle, Ring of Kerry, Connemara virtually invisible.
Old Oct 7th, 2002, 08:26 AM
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We did a Brian Moore Tour when we went to Ireland and it is very much like Sceptre. I called and said we did not want the Limerick accomodations but wanted instead to make our own reservations as we wanted to head for Doolin and they took the price of it off our package. You might call and see if Sceptre would do the same. Call Irish Tours at 1-800-223-6470 and request the Town and Country B&B book and they will send you a copy. You can also access it on the Net at
Old Oct 7th, 2002, 12:48 PM
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KEC, you should of received one with your tickets. And since you can only go to Sceptre B&Bs using the vouchers I could call them and have them Express you one. Or go to the building in NYC and get one.
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