My first visit to Ireland, next year.

Old Nov 28th, 2013, 09:37 PM
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My first visit to Ireland, next year.

Am getting on in years so best to go while still healthy and can walk the golf. All my ancestors from Ireland, mostly Sligo & Mayo, as far as I can learn. That of course was years ago. I am 2nd/3rd generation USA from Chicago. Now I have few dollars and can plan such a trip. My focus will be on golf and meeting local Irish people. Will seek cheapo lodging amonst the Couchsurfing citizens and nearby Quakers, if I can find any. Quakers are my kind of Sunday morn folks. The biggest expense will be air fare from Asia, where I am located now. Then the golf, food, car rental…blah, blah. I have no need/desire to see more of Europe and have seen plenty of USA and Asia.

Current forecast : September 1 2014, fly Hong Kong to London prob via Abu D or Seoul. Then fly onto Dublin and rent a car at airport. Hope to avoid o'nite in London or Dublin. Drive to Westport, stay 4 days one place, if possible, with daily golf and visiting. Move onto Galway and do the same. Am investigating Links golf so some driving daily in order. Move onto Limerick or Tralee and golf/visit/sightsee/hike/eat. Pubs OK but I drink little alcohol and no smoking, please. Final stop near Cork or Waterford. Waterford’s Newtown school hosted my daughter for a year so would be nice to visit round there.

Finally back to Dublin airport and gone from the Emerald Isle. Total time 25 days or so. US$ estimate 5K, all in. Can I do it? Any advice, comments, sympathies or envies welcome.
jobin is offline  
Old Nov 28th, 2013, 11:03 PM
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1. The least hassle way from HK to Dublin is on direct flights from Dubai or Abu Dhabi. Your journey's fraught enough without dealing with Heathrow. But it's also well worth looking at flights via AMS or FRA

2. Even if you live somewhere where they drive on the proper side of the road, it's criminally insane to fly through eight time zones, changing planes twice, then collect a car at an airport and drive round the M50, then deal with country roads between Galway and the NW.

Dublin airport periphery isn't particularly pleasant (or hugely unpleasant either, but...) and Ireland's railway system is pretty mediocre.

If (understandably in my view) you don't want to overnight in Dublin, look up buses on the Dublin airport website. Bus it to Galway, Sligo or anywhere in between that might have a direct bus from the airport, overnight there then collect the car after a proper night's sleep.

Or reconstruct your plans so you can fly from Dublin to Donegal, Kerry or possibly Shannon (for Limerick) and overnight there, re-ordering your sequence of visits.

Even if you're happy about driving straight off a plane, the rest of us aren't. Dismiss this lunatic idea right now - or stay at home.
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Old Nov 29th, 2013, 03:52 AM
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We rented a car at Dublin airport and returned it at Galway International Airport (coming from Italy). We actually did this only so we wouldn't have to drive back to Dublin; we took a bus back to Dublin airport from Galway, after spending a few days there.

I think the advice to take a bus to Galway and rent a car there is good. Getting out of Dublin airport was not straightforward; Galway airport is much simpler. It would mean a little backtracking with your driving, because Westport is north and your other destinations are south. However, Westport is not a very long distance from Galway, and County Mayo is one of the most beautiful places on earth, so you could go to Westport by one road and return by another, and it would be all the better. We really enjoyed both Westport and Galway; I haven't been to Cork or Waterford.
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Old Dec 5th, 2013, 07:45 PM
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I agree with both posts about not driving anywhere from Dublin airport, especially, if you will be alone. The bus service between Dublin airport and Galway city is excellent, inexpensive and very comfortable. I am attaching a link showing the timetable.
http://www.buseireann.ie/pdf/1360752896-020X.pdf

The fare is about 15 Euro and it will give you a chance to catch 40 winks, so you are somewhat refreshed by the time you get to Galway.

You mention that you are getting on in years, so I want to mention that some car rental agencies are reluctant to rent to anyone over 75 (some say 70). There may be a surcharge and you may be responsible for a certain $$$ amount for any damages. It's worth checking into before you go.
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Old Dec 6th, 2013, 09:31 AM
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"Or reconstruct your plans so you can fly from Dublin to Donegal, Kerry or possibly Shannon"
Only one of those is possible and Kerry is even farther from Westport than Dublin..
"Galway International Airport" has been closed for 2 years+

Knock or Ireland West is the closest airport for your starting point of Westport http://www.irelandwestairport.com/fl...route_map.aspx

If you need any relatively local knowledge give me a nod.. a couple of golf courses are on this map http://goo.gl/maps/L5ihu
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