Reviews from our recent trip to Ireland

Jun 29th, 2010, 01:01 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 1,165
Reviews from our recent trip to Ireland

We spent last week in Ireland. We flew from London to Cork and from Shannon back to London, before flying home (we had a conference in London prior to the Ireland trip). it was my husband, myself and our 4 year daughter. Here are our reviews of the places we stayed and a few places we ate.

Kinsale: We stayed at the Desmond house. It was very nice, we would stay here again. We had lunch at crackpots, which was good and dinner at the Shak, which was ok.

Kenmare: We stayed at the Brooklane hotel. This was a very nice hotel. It was almost empty our first night, with a few more people the second night. It is on the Kerry way trail so you can walk into Kenmare in 4-5 minutes. The room was big. We ate our first dinner at no 35 (I think that was the name). The appetizers were fantastic, the mains only mediocre. Our second night we ate at Packies. I think this may have been our best meal of the trip. Make a reservation as we barely got in the night we went.

Dingle: We stayed at the Heaton house. I was not very happy with this place. Part of the problem is that I had the highest expectations for it given the reviews on trip advisor. It is pretty big, so not really a bed and breakfast, but not big enough to be a hotel. There was a lot of hallway noise since there were so many rooms opening onto our floor. The host was very interested in getting us to eat dinner there, so wasn't a great resource for options in town. The bay view was mostly muck when the tide went out. Overall, I think we just never felt like it was that friendly of a place. I also had a little argument with the host on our departure when he asked if I wanted my bill in dollars. I said no I preferred euros. He then told me it was a better deal in euros. I tried to explain that I didn't think it was and that some cards in the US charge the exchange fee even if the transaction is in US dollars as long as it happens abroad (don't think this is the case for me). He told me that was illegal. Whatever.

In Dingle we ate at a pub called John Benny something or other. It was decent pub food. The second night we ate at the Chart house. That was another great meal.

In Ballyvaughan we stayed at Cappabhaile house. This was another nice place. Our room was huge. Strangely, our first night there were only two rooms filled and they put us right next to each other. Why do places do this? The shower was pitiful. But, the location was lovely and the people were great. Our first night we ate at Arcos, an italian place in town. We figured our run of good eating was going to come to end in the Burren, but this place was very good. The second night we ate at Logues Lodge. This was good too, but not amazing. We mainly ate there to watch the US get beat by Ghana.

We had very nice weather on our trip. We thought ROK of was a long day. Some of it is a bit dull. We loved the Slea head drive from Dingle. We also enjoyed driving over Healy's pass on our way from Kinsale to Kenmare. The Burren was a cool area to have a day to drive around and explore the various ruins. Just about everyone we met everywhere we went was amazingly friendly.
eastave is offline  
Jun 29th, 2010, 01:10 PM
Join Date: Oct 2007
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Thanks for the report. We are going to take your advice (and other Fodorites) and have dinner at The Chart House & Packies in Sept.
TPAYT is offline  
Jun 29th, 2010, 07:57 PM
Join Date: Oct 2006
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We too had a hotelier try to charge us in dollars instead of Euros in 2003 in Dublin. In our case he did charge us in dollars because I had no idea there was a difference. We loved our time in Dingle when we were there. It was our favorite place of our 2 week visit. I am sorry that it was not as great for you. A bad hotel stay can ruin an experience. We stayed at Captain's House in Dingle Town and Mary was a great hostess. Not sure if she still has the B&B but I give her high marks and her breakfst was great.
lrock is offline  
Jun 29th, 2010, 09:25 PM
Join Date: Aug 2005
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Thanks for the report --- I'd like to hear more about the dollars vs. euros billing - ??

Irock we stayed at the Captain's House several years ago as well; I later found out it was also featured in a Rick Steves segment on Dingle.
annw is offline  
Jun 30th, 2010, 02:26 AM
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I made a typo in my report. The hotel host said it was a better deal in euros for me. What he said was it was a better deal in dollars. He had asked the woman in front of me if she wanted her bill in Australian dollars and she said no, and he didn't say anything to her. Maybe he was just annoyed that no one was taking the home currency option. And, I guess it was nice he was giving the option instead of just doing it. As far as I have read it is always a better deal in local currency. Do a search here on dynamic currency conversion and you will get a lot of info. Basically, they give you a bad exchange relative to what your credit card would do AND some US credit cards charge an exchange fee even if the transaction is in dollars as long as it is done in a foreign country. I remember reading that in the fine print of one of my credit cards - not the one we travel with.
eastave is offline  
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