Ireland, Just got back !!!!

Jun 12th, 2001, 03:22 PM
  #1  
Phyllis
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Ireland, Just got back !!!!

Hi everyone.....Well, my husband and I just returned from our wonderful first trip to Ireland. I will get the worst over with, it was the airplane ride...We flew from San Francisco to Heathrow Airport in England and then British Express to Dublin. It was a gruling 11-1/2 hour flight total. United Airlines still has not taken rows of seats out to give coach passengers more leg room, so it was the trip from hell. We had the ruddest people in front of us who kept their seats back for the entire trip, alas, no leg room at all. Our return trip was just as bad. Now for the good stuff. Ireland is just absolutely wonderful. The people, the scenery, countryside, the city, the castles, you name it it as all great. Our accommodations were wonderful. The Ariel House in Dublin was nice, but if you book a room make sure it is not on the street side. That is what we had and had to listen to traffic all night, however our breakfast in the atrium room the next morning was wonderful. The Fitzpatrick Hotel in Dublin was very nice as well. while in Dublin we took in quite a few pubs and had a blast.The night life in Dublin is the best place to be. Our next stop was Galway and we just fell in love with the west. We stayed at the Glenlo Abbey Hotel and it was just fantastic. We were really treated like royalty. It is trully a beautiful place, as it is a 5 star hotel. The shopping in Galway is the best. This is where I bought all my gifts for myself and others. Our next stop was Glin Castle in Limerick. Again, it was terrific. We even got to meet Sir Desmond Fitzgerald, the current Knight still living on the premises. Next stop was Bir where we stayed at Kinnitty Castle. It is preserved as it was back in the 15th Century, but nice enough for guests. Our room transported us back to those medieval days. It was really neat. Then we drove back to Dublin for our flight back to the states and stayed for our final night as Clonfarf Castle Hotel. This was another great place and only 5 miles from the airport. We did rent a car while we were there, and driving on the left side of the road was no problem, as we have done that before, but the narrow roads are scary at times. All and all we had a wonderful time and are planning our next trip in the coming year. We did not see nearly enough to satisfy us. If anyone wants more information on any of the places we stayed or anything else, let me know.
Talk to you all soon...Phyllis :=)
 
Jun 12th, 2001, 03:34 PM
  #2  
Thyra
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Welcome back Phyllis, great report, do you have any web site info for the hotels you listed, some of them sound positively outstanding! Take a long breath and start planning the next trip!!!
 
Jun 12th, 2001, 07:55 PM
  #3  
Phyllis
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Thyra...The web site for Glenlo Abbey Castle Hotel in Galway is:[email protected]

The web site for Glin Castle in Limerick is:Glincastle.com

Kinnitty Castle in Birr is: Kinnittycastle.com

Clontarf Castle Hotel in Dublin is:
clontarfcastle.ie

Check these sites out and see for yourself how fantastic they look and they really are. enjoy!!! Phyllis
 
Jun 13th, 2001, 06:53 AM
  #4  
Stephanie
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Your trip sounds wonderful. We are spending a week in Galway in August. We are staying at the Nile Lodge. Do you have any specific recommendations for pubs, shopping, restaurants, and must see sites? Also what about day trips from Galway.
 
Jun 13th, 2001, 07:41 AM
  #5  
Ess
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Hi, Phyllis! Reading your report makes me want to go right back to Ireland (especially the west coast). It's certainly a place you can become addicted to. How did you find the food in Dublin? Did you try any Irish specialities?
 
Jun 14th, 2001, 05:17 AM
  #6  
Raymond
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Phyllis

Sounds like you had a really good time in Ireland. Those castle hotels you stayed in, were they really castles ? And what would be the average cost for a stay including breakfast ? What are the facilities like, like ensuite bathroom, heating and the room itself ?

Thanks

Raymond
 
Jun 14th, 2001, 08:02 AM
  #7  
Jen
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Hi,

Just wondering if anything was closed do to foot and mouth disease!

Jen
 
Jun 14th, 2001, 02:26 PM
  #8  
Phyllis
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Hi.....Let's see where do I begin...As far as Galway, their main shopping area is called "Shop Street"...it is right in the middle of Galway and is basically only open to "foot traffic". There are so many shops to spend your money in, and pubs for Guiness or whatever your beverage of choice is. The prices, however do vary from shop to shop so don't buy any particular item until you visited several stores. There were loads of sweater shops which I was particularly interested in. The hand knit sweaters were absolutely beautiful. The machine made sweaters were nice, and less expensive, but not nearly as beautiful. As far as restuarants in Galway the first night we ate at our hotel which was "Glenlo Abbey" and it was fantastic. The second night we ate at a pub just down the street from the Glenlo Abbey on the left. The food was really good and they had irish music as well. All and all the food we found was really good in Ireland. Especially the seafood, we found it delicious. We had steak and chicken as well and everything we tried was delicious. As far as the "CASTLES" we stayed in, yes they were all real castles. They were "ensuite" meaning we had our own private bathroom. All our rooms were furnished beautifully. Some included breakfast and some did not. The average price was $300/night in US dollars. A little expensive but well worth the price for us. We wanted to experience the chance to stay in these places and we had such a fantastic time. The staff at all the places we stayed could not have been nicer and most accommodating. If you would like to see what these places look like please go to their web site and you can see for yourself how wonderful they look.
Talk to you all soon... I have to go for now...today is our 32nd wedding anniversary and I am planning a very nice and romantic dinner for two for tonight...Phyllis :=)
 
Jun 14th, 2001, 04:45 PM
  #9  
michelle
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i just got back from ireland recently as well (a week well-spent in may) and must agree that galway was great. the city is just compact enough that it's easy to take in on foot. at the base of shop street was a funky little chip shop (mc donaugh's) that had the BEST fish n' chips i have ever had the pleasure of eating! the fish is fresh and the chips as well (made from scratch daily).

we heard some great music at a pub suggested by our b&b hostess -- the name is irish, and is slipping my mind, but it's up a block or two from the mc donaugh's on the right hand side. it has a black & red exterior and clearly posts that it has live music nightly. the paid musicians come in at 9, before then, it's a jam session.

for shopping -- there's plenty to be had. we purchased a *fabulous* hand knit aran sweater (still smelling very sheepy) on eyre square and a hand-made claddagh ring at blacoe jewelwer's on shop street. also on shop street was the treasure chest -- many different souvenier items to choose from, including an impressive array of linens.

as for day trips, i would suggest the aran islands. there are ferries & flights running daily. check here for some preliminary info: http://homepage.eircom.net/~domainnames/home.html
 
Jun 15th, 2001, 01:51 PM
  #10  
Phyllis
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Hi Jen...nothing was closed to us due to foot and mouth disease. Most places still have the disenfectant mats out but that is just for precaution.
 
Jun 16th, 2001, 05:31 AM
  #11  
Ruth
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Phyllis, we will be staying at Clontarf Castle later this year. Could you please tell me what it was like?
 
Jun 28th, 2001, 07:16 PM
  #12  
Phyllis
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Hi Ruth..sorry it took me so long to get back to you, I have been so busy I have not had a chance to to check in. The Clontarf Castle Hotel in Clontarf was really, really nice. It is a castle that they built additions around. The main castle itself is in the middle and the additions are on both sides. The neatest part is that the back of the castle is actually part of of the lobby of the hotel. You can even see the main door of the castle. We really enjoyed it very much. They also have a very nice resturant and pub. enjoy..Phyllis
 
Jun 28th, 2001, 08:42 PM
  #13  
Ruth
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Thank you very much. Can't wait.
 
Jul 1st, 2001, 09:27 PM
  #14  
Pat O'C
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In 1997 we stayed at Glenlo Abbey after a disaster at a B-B. It was fantastic,We'll be back in late July and can't wait. Galway is an awesome city. Other recommended places; Waterford Castle if you want to tour the factory, recommended. We're staying at a place in connemara called Killary Lodge. If anyone has been there we'd love to know how it was. We're very much looking forward to it.
 
Jul 12th, 2001, 11:49 AM
  #15  
DB
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We were in Ireland the end of May and the first of June, and it was beautiful with flowers blooming everywhere!! We stayed in Galway two nights at a B&B called Marliss House, and we were treated like royalty. Her breakfasts were fabulous with fruit, cereal, full Irish meal, and french toast. Spoiled us!! Also, you need to visit Kylemore Abbey, the church, Connor Pass, Slea Head, Old Head, Britta's Bay, do the Waterford tour, Kinsale was a great place to spend a night. We stayed in a B&B called Crossways, and could see the bay and boats from our room. I was amazed at the prosperity Ireland has undergone, due to the internet service industry.The roads are narrow and curvy, but fun with flowers to behold in every direction. Also, the food was deliciuos, served very elegantly with beautiful service and tableclothes. We ate in a small place called Wingfields Bistro in Enniscotty, which amazed us with it's beautiful style. All of the B&B's we stayed in were very nice, with very friendly people, flower gardens, and some had palm trees. Visit the Muckross House and Hotel. You ride a jaunting cart, which is fun and the tour of the house and gardens is unbelievable. We ate at the Hotel and loved it. We kept saying that Ireland had more than 40 shades of green! We had a fantastic trip, and I agree with Phyllis concerning the space on American Airlines, and we also had very rude people in front of us, and had to travel the entire trip with them in our laps. The Arelingus trip to Dublin was wonderful and lots of room. I forgot to mention the linen shops. They are so neat, and I didn't think they were expensive at all. We also visited the Ross Castle that has been restored. So much to tell about!!
 
Jul 26th, 2001, 02:57 AM
  #16  
D.
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I am going to Ireland on the 23rd of August, I can't express my excitement..how is the weather there, my bofriend being the italian that he is is soooo against anything not scalding hot, my theory is that Guiness willl keep him warm....
 
Jul 29th, 2001, 08:48 AM
  #17  
xaimi
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peemac: Will be staying at Clontarf for 2 nites in Oct. One aft and eve will be free (tour) and wonder will it be a prob to get trans to the Grafton St area? I noticed it about 2 mi from shopping area>
 
Jul 29th, 2001, 07:59 PM
  #18  
Cathy
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Xaimi,
Clontarf is part of Dublin city see the Dublin Bus web site via www.cie.ie

Cathy
 
Jul 30th, 2001, 05:01 AM
  #19  
xaimi
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Thanks Cathy..
 
Aug 7th, 2001, 02:25 PM
  #20  
Gayle
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Phyllis, we are also staying at Clontarf. We will be driving back to Dublin from Donegal and spending our last night there before flying out. Did you drive a car to Clontarf? Was it hard to find? Would it be easier just to turn car into airport and take a taxi?
 

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