Ireland in January!

Nov 10th, 2001, 10:50 AM
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Ireland in January!

We will be in Ireland for one week in the middle of January -- we wanted to vist Southwestern Ireland (County Clare, Kerry, and perhaps Tipperary, Kilkenny.) Would love to have advice ("don't go in the winter" is not helpful, we already know we are probably crazy) or tips from someone who has been to Ireland during the winter.
Nov 12th, 2001, 11:30 AM
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My main advise: get up early. You won't have a lot of sunlight, so use what you do have wisely. Find out when the sun rises, and go from there.

Some of the normal tourist sites will be closed (you can probably check on most of those via the Internet), but not all.

Be careful on the roads. You likely will not run into much snow, unless you're in the mountains (although parts of Ireland did get more than 6 inches during blizzards last January--that was extremely unusual). But ice on the roads is a real concern, since there's so much rain.

It will be cold, but typically not the vicious cold that we get in some parts of the States (I grew up in the snow belt) in January.

After dark, find a nice, cozy pub with a fire going, and settle in for a warm meal and a night of the warming effects of alcohol!
Nov 12th, 2001, 11:32 AM
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Whoops "advice" not "advise".

One more thing: if you do run into heavy snows, stay off the roads. There are very very few snowplows in the entire country, and even main roads go unplowed for days. And even though the road crews commonly treat icy roads, for some reason they don't do anything to snowy roads. They don't even put down sand.
Nov 12th, 2001, 12:33 PM
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Linda - I went to Ireland and Scotland last January and had a great time. Yes, the weather is a little chilly, but I only encountered a brief period of sleet one evening. Other than that, we didn't even encounter any rain. I bought a weatherproof jacket from Eddie Bauer and was just fine the entire trip in terms of warmth.

Be sure to check out some of the January sales. We went to the Woolen Mill store next to the Blarney Castle and found some great deals. There were some very nice wool sweaters on sale and I even found Waterford crystal on sale for prices far better than anything I've ever seen here in the States. And you can have them ship things for you and they'll arrive in approximately 6 weeks.

Go and enjoy yourself!
Nov 12th, 2001, 12:48 PM
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The advice on not driving after dark is excellent. I went last November and after a couple of evening drives I made sure I was back at the hotel before dark. The driving over there is difficult to start with since the roads are really narrow and not lit well. The moisture on my windshield, coupled with the conditions I mentioned, and the crooked roads and REALLY fast drivers made for tense moments.. Ann's advice to hit a pub by your hotel in the evening is very wise indeed.
Nov 12th, 2001, 02:35 PM
Edmond O`Flaherty
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The average temperature in Ireland in January is 40 degrees F so it is quite mild compared to much of America.Average snowfall is less than an inch most years.I would not worry too much about the snow.It gets dark though around 4pm in January.I live in Dublin and quite happily visit places like Killarney and Connemara in January.
Visiting Dublin in January is popular with visitors from continental Europe as it is much milder in Ireland than places like London or Paris.Some of the ancient monuments in the country are closed in winter though and sometimes you will find strong winds and heavy rain especially in the west.
Nov 12th, 2001, 02:45 PM
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Would suggest not only the water proof jacket, but a pair of waterproof pants as well since the wind really blows the rain around. Two of the best things about Ireland are the pubs and conversations with the natives and you'll have much more time for them in January! Try to stay in some "walkable towns" so you don't drive at night--Galway, Dingle, Killarny, Doolin. Choose little hotels in the center of things or short walk B&Bs. A big wooly scarf is nice for your neck, shoulders or head when the winds blow and can be purchased while there.
Nov 12th, 2001, 02:59 PM
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I live in Ireland and love travelling around the country in Jan. and Feb. The advice of allowing twice as much time to travel half the time you would normally do at home is good for Ireland but for Ireland in the winter you should double that. Do not even think of renting a car to drive in or around Dublin - it is crazy trafficwise.

There will be great winter sales and bargains on in early Jan. but do remember that the Euro will be in use as opposed to the good olde Irish punt.

Many hotels and B&Bs will have special midweek offers etc - shop around and some may be closed for the off season.

Contact the Irish Tourist Board and get them to send you their free brochures etc re what is open and closed.

Hope this helps and have a good holiday.

Kind regards


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