Help with SW Ireland Itenerary

Old Aug 5th, 2003, 04:04 AM
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Help with SW Ireland Itenerary

I am taking my 72 yr old mom and two kids 8 & 15 to Ireland for our first visit from Aug 14 through Aug 21. Ohe following itenery has been recommended by a friend:

Aug. l5 - KINSALE - I NIGHT
Aug. 16 & 17 - KILLARNEY - 2NIGHTS
Travel from Kinsale to Killarney via the Southwest coast, taking in Clonakilty,
Skibbereen, Bantry Bay, Town of Bantry to Kenmare, and on to Killarney. If
seeing these wonderful places, there is no need to travel on the Ring of
Kerry.
Aug. 18 - Travel north from Killarney, possibly visit Dingle Peninsula,
continue traveling until you reach Galway City
Aug. 18 - GALWAY CITY - l night
Aug 19 - Ashford Castle (there is much to do
at Ashford..boat rides, golf, horseback riding, and just walking around the
grounds..)
Aug 20 & 21 - CONNEMARA -short driver from the Ashford to Clifden, capital
of Connemara - anyplace in Clifden or nearby would be great to stay for
the last 2 nights.

Are there any changes you would make? We will be staying at B&Bs so our itenery is flexable (except for the stay at Ashford Castle which is booked for the 19th). Any recommendations for B&Bs?
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Old Aug 5th, 2003, 04:24 AM
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Where are you flying into? Driving to Kinsale the first day and leaving the following morning to Killarney? I don't think it will give the place justice. You are also not leaving enough time in Dingle to give it justice. I would think the day you arrive plus one day in each.

I would do Kinsale 15/16, drive by Killarney and wave to the folks on the way to Dingle, 17/18, then head for Galway.

Just a thought.

If you are going from Dingle to Galway, you might want to consider taking the Kilmer ferry and stopping by to see the Cliffs of Moher (sp).
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Old Aug 5th, 2003, 04:25 AM
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Aug. 18th: I would suggest the Tarbert-Killimer ferry and a leisurely drive up the coast in west County Clare. You may even catch some of Willie Clancy's Irish stepdancing master classes around the Armada Hotel (Spanish Point). Then you could stop at Lahinch, the Cliffs of Moher, Doolin, maybe the Burren on your way to Galway. Aug 18 is a Monday. There's not much to see/do in Galway on a Monday. I would backtrack from Doolin to Ennis rather than Galway. At least there's Traditional Irish music at Cruises in Ennis every night. And Ennis is a much smaller and (IMHO) nicer place to visit.

I think you're 'pushing it,' especially with a 72-year old mother 'in tow.' Slow down! Enjoy what you do see.
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Old Aug 5th, 2003, 04:34 AM
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i too am curious where you are flying in and out of. I love to stay mobile on vacation (read: griswold type drive and go) but even I think that the itinery could be sloed down a bit...
what types of things are you interested in seeing?
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Old Aug 5th, 2003, 06:28 AM
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I am flying into and out of Shannon, leaving the States on 8/13. We were planning on staying at a hotel near the airport the first night to rest and start out in the morning. Thanks for the step dancing suggestions. My 8 yr old is a competetive step dancer and I'm sure she would love to see some of that!
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Old Aug 5th, 2003, 07:45 AM
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Well,depending on what time your flight gets in, I would try to make your way , as far as 90 min or 2 hrs in the car will get you, towards Kinsale that first day. Hopefully this will mean your drive into Kinsale on the 15th will be much shorter and will give you time to explore more.

Personally - I am not a fan of a lot of 1 night stays ( or 2 night stays that are the result of driving all day , day 1...) Only you will be able to tell if this is too ambitious for both Your Mother & kids.

Take a good look at your driving distances, and times - you really do average around 35mph , and it takes a lot longer to do things than you will expect. Especially with a senior along. Just stopping for lunch can take over an hour, by the time you stop in that cute little shop , just for "a minute" . I know - I took my Mom & Dad in April.

If you have your heart set on Kinsale for the 15th I would book that one ahead - you are going to need either a family room, or 2 rooms, and Kinsale on a Friday night books up.

( I would also probably book Killarney for Saturday night).

If you want more reviews, you may want to post this on IrelandYes.com.
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Old Aug 5th, 2003, 07:47 AM
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oh - another thing: when is your flight home? if if is before 2pm, you are going to want to spend your last night closer to the Airport. You will need to be to the airport at least 2 hrs ahead of time, and will need to return the car as well.
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Old Aug 5th, 2003, 08:03 AM
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Something to consider in Kinsale; we thought Kinsale would be just a cute tourist town, like Sausalito (we're from SF) but our walking tour guide in Kinsale, Don Herlihy enlightened us.
He has researched the historic importance of the town of Kinsale and it's harbor. The Spanish Armada, the clans, the English "Plantation" of Northern Ireland; it all came to life as Mr. Herlihy told his tales. He does walking tours every day at 11ish, and my 72 year old mother could have done the walk easily. Watch for him!
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Old Aug 5th, 2003, 11:22 AM
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I have to agree with Debbie about moving closer to Kinsale the first day. The drive from Shannon towards Cork is on pretty good roads and you could be in Blarney within two hours which would be a nice place to stay. The trip to Kinsale from there won't be more than an hour and a half but the drive is a bit more challenging. I would also agree with two nights in Kinsale then a night in Killarney. As for your last two nights, again I agree with Debbie as Clifden is too far to comfortably return to the airport. I am a fan of Clifden and if you research the Sky Road you will find some nice selections for B&Bs. I have stayed at the Dolphin Beach House B&B which is very nice but cost me over 100E for two persons. Anywho, have a great trip and try not to do too much driving.
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Old Aug 5th, 2003, 12:16 PM
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If you are a lover of scenery, don't miss the Dingle Peninsula and Slea Head Drive and Connor's Pass! The most beautiful scenery of our trip! I also encourage you to take off for Kinsale upon arriving in Shannon. You would just be wasting a day if you don't. We did not get to bed until 9:00pm our first day and we were fine.
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Old Aug 5th, 2003, 02:37 PM
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With only one week (and two kids and a mother), I'd skip the drive to Kinsale entirely. You can easily fill your week on the west coast between Killarney/Dingle up through Connemara, and you might have a more relaxing time. I'd save the southern coast for the next trip.
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