Need SW Ireland Itinerary Help

Old May 2nd, 2006, 05:16 AM
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Need SW Ireland Itinerary Help

I have booked flights into Cork and out of Shannon and I have 6 nights to split up and a route to plan.

I thought of spending 2 nights in each of Cork, Killarney and Limerick. I don't mind staying in more places if it's practical to do that.

Does this seem sensible or are there better places to use as bases for exploring? We plan to mainly sightsee during the daytime (we will have a car) and are looking for towns with plenty of things to do in the evenings.

Thnks for any help.
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Old May 2nd, 2006, 05:24 AM
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Is this your first trip to Ireland? If so, I would ask why you choose Limerick? if there is some special reason (i.e., family lives there) then fine, if not, there are other places that would make a better base, such as Dingle or Ennis, IMHO. Limerick is a rather large city, and cities aren't where you find the 'best' Ireland.

Cork is fine, though I would say Kinsale is a bit more cozy. A visit to Cobh is worth it, if you are interested in immigration history (that's where most of the immigrants left from to America).

Killarney is a good, central choice, though getting a bit touristy. Kenmare is a good alternative.

With only 6 nights, 3 bases is fine. As for evening entertainment, there is plenty to do in all the above. If you are interested in traditional Irish pub singing, definitely consider Dingle
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Old May 2nd, 2006, 07:13 AM
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I definitely agree with the other post. Cork is an industrial city and Limerick did not look very inviting. We really enjoyed Killarney. I was disappointed in Kinsale. It was pretty but I liked Dingle much better. It was also very expensive. I had read all the "touristy" comments re Killarney but we really enjoyed our stay there. It is a beautiful town and there is much to see and do nearby. We drove to Kenmare for an afternoon but I would not use it as a base as it is somewhat isolated.
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Old May 2nd, 2006, 09:01 AM
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I can't see any reason for more than 2 hours in Cork--unless you have family ties there. We enjoyed the coastal route from Kinsale to Bantry Bay but it took some hours.
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Old May 2nd, 2006, 12:44 PM
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I agree with Green Dragon here. It also sort of depends on what time of year you are traveling. In the off season, Killarney would be fine, but during high tourist season, I would pick Kenmare perhaps.

Things are a bit pricey in Kinsale but it can be a nice town. Lots of good food. There are other nice small towns that would be interesting ... Clonakilty, Skibbereen that would be much less heavily traveled which is usually my choice.

I'd give Limerick a pass and choose and choose something near. Cork is too easy to get lost in while driving, so keep that in mind. The Cork airport is south of town so the commute after landing to Kinsale would be quite short and relatively easy.

Bill
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Old May 2nd, 2006, 01:32 PM
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Thanks for the replies - these are really helpful. We are flying from London (so no jetlag worries) but we land in Cork at 10.30pm so thought stopping in Cork was the best plan. We could then use the following day to explore Blarney and possibly Cobh before spending a second night in Coek.

I will take a look at Kenmore vs Killarney for nihgts 3 and 4.

It seems like Limerick was a bad choice. I think I chose it because it's close to Shannon for our departure. I think I will look at spending the last two nights in Ennis or split the two nights into two separate locations and just spend the last night in Ennis.

I have been to Dublin a couple of times but SW Ireland will be new for both of us. The trip is later this month so hopefully before the peak season begins.
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Old May 2nd, 2006, 04:49 PM
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My husband loves Cork, but rather than actually stay there, we opted for Kinsale last time. We drive nearly into Cork and park in one of the garages on the outskirts. There are also bus lots (for lack of a better term) where you can park and take the bus into town. We visited Blarney and Cobh while based in Kinsale.

We only spent one night in Killarney so we didn't really see too much of the town. However, there are lots of things in the area to keep you busy for a couple of days; the same goes for Kenmare, which is a smaller town with a great Quill's!
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Old May 2nd, 2006, 05:39 PM
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Ennis is a good choice for your last night; but if "later this month" includes any portion of 21-29 May, be aware that those are the dates for the Fleadh Nua, Ireland's national music and dance festival. Accommodations will be hard to find in town. With a car, of course, you could stay at a countryside B&B. If you're in Ennis before the festival, spend an evening at Cruise's for traditional music sessions and good pub grub.
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Old May 3rd, 2006, 04:52 AM
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Tim - thanks for the info on those dates. We arrive in Cork on the evening of 24 May and leave from Shannon Airport just after midday on 30 May.

If we stayed 1 night in Ennis, it would be 29 May which coincides with the end of the festival.
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Old May 3rd, 2006, 05:32 AM
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West Cork is beautiful, I wouldnt miss out on it.
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Old May 3rd, 2006, 08:56 AM
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If you don't mind staying in a hostel, check out the Abbey Tourist Hostel in Ennis (www.abbeytouristhostel.com). You might have better luck finding a bed there on 29 May than a hotel. My wife and I and our adult daughter stayed there last May during the Fleadh Nua. The hostel underwent renovations this past winter so everything should be sparklingly fresh. There is a pay parking lot across the street which is free overnight. The hostel is within easy walking distance from Fleadh Nua venues and pubs with traditional music sessions.
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