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Ireland with a "taste" of Scotland in 2 weeks?

Ireland with a "taste" of Scotland in 2 weeks?

Jan 11th, 2018, 08:36 AM
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 65,532
Just a very quick comment(s):

>>Then either ferry from Cairnryan to Belfast or back to GLA and fly to Belfast. Any opinions on this?<<

Drop the car at GLA and fly to Belfast. If you take the ferry you have the problem of dropping a UK car in Ireland - most won't allow that and those that do charge an enormous drop off fee.

As for where to stay the 2 nights after Glencoe - I'd look at the Callander area. Callander/Aberfoyle/Lake of Menteith/Drymen are all possibilities) and all an easy drive to GLA. Look at the Lake Hotel ​​​​​​​http://www.lake-hotel.com
janisj is online now  
Jan 11th, 2018, 10:00 AM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 9,117
Full disclosure: Of those two countries I have only been to one.

If your spouse has a very strong interest in GOT locations: here is a website that details the (Northern) Irish locations.

Game of ThronesŪ Filming Locations | Ireland.com

Also: https://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/l...-35874929.html

If that is your spouse's passion and this is his 50th birthday trip, I offer this as a suggestion: have him examine the itinerary of the all day tour a poster above recommends, and also the second article, and get his feedback on whether the tour would suffice or if you would rather do a self drive and spend more time. This of course might mean cutting down on the time you have in Eire (southern Ireland) but first you want to handle your priorities, which include wanting a more relaxed pace. Having not been to either n or s Ireland I cannot comment on the scenery but I gotta say, that Telegraph article sure makes the north look darn beautiful.

I would consider something like this:
Arrive in your air gateway, whatever that is: 1 to 2 nights
Do a week in Scotland: 7 n, subtotal 8/9
Fly to Belfast: 1 n, subtotal 9/1
I am giving you a full night after the Belfast flight because if there is any hiccup in the flights, you want time to catch up - because the GOT tour is so important.
GOT: 2 n minimum, subtotal 11/12
departure gateway, wherever that is: 1 or 2: 13/15
I assume you have allowed a couple of nights on your return to recover if you have to get back to work, and of course you know all about overnight flights from your other travels.

Good luck!
Sue_xx_yy is offline  
Sep 11th, 2019, 04:23 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 113
Trip Report

Hi everyone. I know a trip report is way late on this. But, I was just scoping out info for a new trip we are planning and noticed that this thread still gets a fair amount of hits. So, I wanted to report on the route we ultimately took and let anyone who's here looking for info on a similar itinerary know that I'm open to any questions you may have. I'll make this as brief as I can.

We flew from Phila. to Glasgow (most economical flight) and immediately transferred to Edinburgh by taxi.

Spent 4 nights in Edinburgh at an AMAZING AirBnB in Dean Village. We loved this city and my one complaint is that we could have used a few more days here. We will be back!

Picked up a car on the last day in Edinburgh, drove up to the Highlands and stayed at Glengarry Castle in Invergarry. Stunning place and wonderful trip back in time. We spend 3 nights at the Castle and during that time, took a day tour to Isle of Skye which was wonderful!

We then drove down from Invergarry through Glen Coe along Loch Lomond to Culzean Castle in Maybole, South Ayrshire. This was a long drive and the road along the lake was winding and narrow, but wow was it stunning! The lowlands around Culzean Castle in Ayrshire were a completely different landscape and so beautiful. Glad we got to see this part of the Scotland if only briefly. We spent one fantastic night at the Eisenhower Hotel in Culzean Castle. This was a very expensive splurge but a once in a lifetime experience!

The next morning, we woke and drove to Cairnryan, turned in the car and took the ferry to Belfast. Wonderful experience and well worth the extra time it took to drive.

Stayed at an AirBnB in Belfast for 3 nights and took a GOT day tour to the Antrim coast. This was definitely the highlight of the trip! If you are a GOT fan, the tour was AMAZING and worth the entire, long day we spent. Got to visit many filming locations as well as the Giant's Causeway. This was a small bus trip (on which we made several lasting friendships) and our tour guide was a double on the show! The Antrim cost is otherworldly and worth the time.

We also took a Black Taxi tour of Belfast and learned so much about the Troubles and history of that city which was both sobering and fascinating.

We then picked up another car and drove from Belfast to Dublin where we spent 2 nights at an AirBnB in the city center. Of all the driving we did, driving into and out of Dublin was the most challenging and I would avoid it if we did this trip again, We were in need of some rest by the time we got to Dublin, so, we didnt do much sight seeing. Just walked around a bit from our central location and visited some pubs and shops. I really felt as though in-depth Dublin was a trip for another time.

From there we drove to Galway. Easy drive, not very scenic, but we LOVED Galway and spent 3 nights there at an AirBnB. We really enjoyed our time in Galway just wandering around and taking in the quaint town. While there we did a side trip to Cliffs of Mohr which was well worth it. The road there was very scenic and we got to visit at few smaller castles along the way. The cliffs are unreal and a must do! The road to and from the cliffs was VERY winding, twisting, stone walls on either side and everything I was worried about before we went. However, at that point, we were two weeks into the driving tour and I felt like a pro and handled it with ease. Certainly not nearly as nerve wracking as driving in Dublin City!

On the last day, we drove from Galway to Shannon Airport, turned in the car and flew home.

I will stress that this was not an economical trip and we splurged on many of the places we stayed and things we did. BUT, it was a 50th b-day trip for my hubby (mine was Australia and the "once in a lifetime" factor was pretty much the point. It certainly was that and more! It was a lot of driving, traveling and moving parts, but with good planning, it still felt leisurely and everything fell into place. We will definitely be back to Scotland and Ireland to see things we missed and we loved both countries and Northern Ireland!

Last edited by cat; Sep 11th, 2019 at 04:25 AM.
cat is offline  
Sep 11th, 2019, 07:15 AM
Join Date: Jun 2016
Posts: 2,663
Northern Ireland is beautiful. We did a small bus GOT tour also. He had flat Stanley's for us to pose with and other tourist kept wanting to take pictures with Ariel. It was so much fun. I have done a black cab tour with a Catholic and a Prod. Very different but I was glad as we went to different places the other wouldn't go.

Was Dean Village a good location?
Macross is offline  
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