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Struggling with Ireland itinerary - help finding off the beaten path gems!

Struggling with Ireland itinerary - help finding off the beaten path gems!

Jul 16th, 2014, 03:54 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 744
Struggling with Ireland itinerary - help finding off the beaten path gems!

My boyfriend and I are planning a week in Ireland - starting in Dublin where we land on a Friday evening - making our way slowly up to Downpatrick in Northern Ireland where we will stay with his family for a few days. After much deliberation we have decided not to go below the Dublin-Galway line. As sad as it makes me to miss the many many sights the southern half has to offer, we don't want to spend our entire week driving and would like to explore areas like Sligo and Donegal, which sound a bit more rugged and slightly less touristy. We have decided to spend 2 nights in each area, to minimize the need for moving hotels every night.

Our rough itinerary is:

Day 1: County Wicklow for hiking and seeing Glendalough
Days 2-3: Near or on Aran Islands
Days 4-5: County Sligo for historic sites
Days 6-7: Donegal and Northern Ireland

Would very much appreciate information about:

- any places we should stop on the way (e.g. thinking Clocmanoise on the way West on Day 2)
- any beautiful drives we should take along the way, as opposed to just blindly following Google Maps (which by default selects the fastest, not the prettiest, route!)
- what villages to stay in for each of the areas we're targeting, and any really remarkable B&Bs
- any out of this world restaurants or pubs we'll pass by on this rough path!

Many many thanks

mp413 is offline  
Jul 16th, 2014, 04:40 AM
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 9,171

This is from Tony who must be on vacay.
flpab is offline  
Jul 16th, 2014, 04:43 AM
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Posts: 9,171

Also read Green Dragon's trip reports on Fodors. She does many out of the way places and just did Northern Ireland with many of the Game of Throne stops.
flpab is offline  
Jul 22nd, 2014, 12:08 PM
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 1,647
Some Trip Reports that MIGHT help --
From 2013: http://ireland.activeboard.com/t5450...junejuly-2013/
From 2012: http://ireland.activeboard.com/t5151...tirement-tour/
Even OLDER -- 2007: http://ireland.activeboard.com/t1282...iscovery-tour/
You might also do a Search for Reports by an individual with the screen name of Songdoc -- He's made a few trips to NI, as well.
Itallian_Chauffer is offline  
Jul 24th, 2014, 07:23 AM
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Songdoc's report which I have bookmarked
flpab is offline  
Jul 24th, 2014, 08:33 AM
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 70
I hope you enjoy your trip. Ireland is a wonderful and magical place. A couple of recommendations that aren't on everyone's list. Just north of Sligo stop at Creevykeel Court Tomb. It's right off the highway and is very interesting. From Creevykeel you get a good view of Lord Mountbattan's former home in Mullaghmore. Make a stop at The Jackie Clark Museum in Ballina, not too far from Sligo. It is astounding. Filled with priceless historic relics from Ireland's dynamic history. Enjoy. Jeff
JeffTWA is offline  
Aug 9th, 2014, 05:45 AM
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 2
I have been following this group on Facebook. I will be in Sligo at the end of August and hope to make use of their services.
mjbb is offline  
Aug 9th, 2014, 08:59 AM
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The Gleniff Horseshoe is a lovely drive and nature walk. Also Glencar Lake and Waterfall.
jaja is offline  
Aug 15th, 2014, 11:34 AM
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flpab, thanks for the shout out!!! I also have a wee ebook out on Ireland travel, with a huge section of hidden places. However, I'm certain it's against the rules to post it here. You can find it on my home page www.greendragonartist.com - if you want to email me I can send you information. Otherwise, I've lots of trip reports here on Fodors, just click my name.

Another great resource is Michele Erdvig at www.irelandyes.com. She also has an active forum with lots of helpful folks for Ireland.
GreenDragon is offline  
Aug 15th, 2014, 01:06 PM
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Posts: 9,171
I am buying your book Greendragon, just saw it on amazon.
flpab is offline  
Aug 18th, 2014, 06:07 AM
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Yay! Thank you! I hope you enjoy it and get many useful tips from it
GreenDragon is offline  
Aug 18th, 2014, 12:36 PM
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 18
ck out Vagabond tours - and follow one of their tours it will show where they are going - they are off the beaten path and set up for active people - might give you some ideas
OkieLady is offline  
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