Rail travel in Ireland

Old Mar 22nd, 2003, 05:26 PM
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Rail travel in Ireland

I'm considering a trip to Ireland and love to travel by train. Is it possible to tour Ireland by train? I've briefly looked at the Irish Rail website, which makes it sound like they are now rebuilding the railway system. Has anyone planned a trip by rail? Is it possible to get around the country by rail only? I'd love to get some feedback.
Thanks, Martha
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Old Mar 22nd, 2003, 05:52 PM
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The lines in Ireland all radiate from Dublin, apart from a cross-country line with two trains a day between Wexford and Limerick. So a rail tour would involve many journeys from point a via Dublin to point b. All quite possible, since moist lines run for just three hours from Dublin. Many trains have restaurant cars or buffet cars.
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Old Mar 22nd, 2003, 06:45 PM
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My mother in law likes to travel by train in Ireland where as we prefer car. She tends to trip to Belfast or Cobh, etc by train and then back to base in Dublin.

As Ben said, the rail system there seems to hub pretty much only through Dublin. Smaller villages, the epitome of Ireland for me, often aren't on a rail line the way they might be in some other countries.

It depends on where you want to go, but I would feel as though you may sacrifice some sites in order to enjoy the train. Of course, you may be able to catch a bus to some locations, from cities like Galway or your interests may already lie within the cities themselves.

Here's a map of the rail system:
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Old Mar 22nd, 2003, 07:53 PM
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Practical advice this is not, but you might be interested in getting a copy of Michael Palin's great rail journey, titled from Derry to Kerry. Monty Python-alum Palin has Irish roots, and his journey is both informative and highly entertaining. Indeed, it might make for a perfect lead-in to your Irish rail adventure.

Best of luck.
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Old Mar 24th, 2003, 05:24 PM
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As an alternative, would it be possible to base myself in Dublin and do a number of day trips by train to nearby places for several days, and then maybe stay in one of the towns on the west coast for a few days to see that part of the country? I'm thinking of taking my elderly mother and don't want to move around too much, and don't really relish driving around, either.
Thanks for all your help.
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Old Mar 25th, 2003, 01:18 AM
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From Dublin you can get a direct train to Wexford,Waterford,Kilkenny,Cork,Killarney,Tralee,L imerick,Galway,Westport,Sligo,Belfast.Best trains are on the Cork and Belfast routes.You may notice a significant number of over 66`s on the trains as people over 66 are given free travel on trains and buses.It applies only to residents though.
Old Mar 25th, 2003, 03:02 AM
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I've travelled around Ireland using trains and buses. The trains are very good for journeys like Dublin-Cork or Dublin-Galway, but I've used buses to get to small places like Baltimore and Dingle, and for journeys like Limerick-Galway. You can get a pass which covers all trains and buses (apart from city buses in Dublin), as well as passes covering trains or buses.
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