trip to ireland-need some advise

Old Nov 20th, 2002, 10:29 AM
  #1  
connie
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trip to ireland-need some advise

We are planning a trip to ireland late next march for 10 nights. We will be driving. We fly into Shannon and are staying the first night by Bunratty Castle and doing the dinner. Then we are planning on going to Galway and spending 2 nights there. Our last two nights we will be in Dublin. Does anyone have any suggestions for the other 5 nights. I have thought of going to Connemara, doolin, Kilarney,Blarney, Dingle, Kinsale, Kilkenny, but I am having trouble narrowing it down.
 
Old Nov 20th, 2002, 10:45 AM
  #2  
Debbie
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Well,
first off - try to go by the Cliffs on your way to Galway - or on your way out of Galway.
Then, you head down to Killarney from Galway, and stay in that area for 3 nights, you can cover Kinsale & Blarney in one day trip,
-either dingle or the ring of Kerry in another
- and have your 3rd day for wandering around Killarney.

Then head over to Kilkenny - stop at Cashel , & Waterford crystal on the way over - stay for 2 nights

finish your trip in Dublin. You are going to want to turn in your car ASAP when you get to Dublin - use public transportation while there.

good luck
Debbie
 
Old Nov 20th, 2002, 01:52 PM
  #3  
kam
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Go to ireland-withPatPreston.com and read all about the country. Then you can get some itinerary help from Pat herself. Personally, I would choose Clifden, Connemara as a base after Galway City. You can do many daytrips from there including the Aran Islands, if the weather is decent. A wonderful guest house outside of Clifden is Mal Dua House (they have a website) and the most helpful hosts will help you plan trips around. Dingle is another fav of ours, but 5 days might be too much in Dingle. Doolin very small, but the Clare area around it is interesting. Blarney (sorry!) don't care for at all.If you want to go to Killarny, I would stay outside of town near Muckross House. Kilkenny is great, but 5 days too much. In Bunratty, you could have a better meal at Durty Nellies pub or the seafood restaurant (can't recall name) and just tour the castle and folk park. I wasn't impressed by the banquet at the castle. There's also Kathleen's at the Bunratty Castle Hotel (not a castle, but a pleasant hotel). They have decent food and a performance with music etc. instead of medieval influence at the castle itself.
 
Old Nov 20th, 2002, 02:10 PM
  #4  
bill
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Connie:

Catch the Connemara from Galway. I agree with Debbie that you should pick up the Cliffs of Moher on the way south and then catch the ferry at Killimer across the Shannon. I would probably do 2 nights in Dingle and then maybe two nights in Kenmare or, if you are traveling light, Kenmare one night and Kinsale on a second then Kilkenny on the last before Dublin. I would not spend a day wandering around Killarney. You can find the same tacky gifts in Dublin. Visit the Nat'l Park instead. It's spectacular. It shouldn't be crowded at that time of year.

If you are in Kinsale and Galway, you can definitely skip Waterford Crystal. There are crystal shops in both towns that are considered far superior to Waterford.

Agree with getting rid of the car on arrival in Dublin.

Bill
 
Old Nov 20th, 2002, 02:59 PM
  #5  
Debbie
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just to clarify - when I mentioned "wander around Killarney" I really meant explore closer to Killarney - National park, Muckross house - as opposed to a full day trip . ( Although, I will admit - I found a wonderful Linen tablecloth in Killarney - had a hard time finding one anywhere else, and the others I did find were double the price. I also found a wonderful scarf & glove set - so it is not all 'tacky' gifts. They do have some nice shops there)

One thing I would caution is the tendency to hop from town to town , 1 night each. At the end of a 10 day ( or 7 or 5) day trip packing up every morning , and trying to find the next B&B , gets very old. Better to find a place that you can stay 2 or even better 3 nights , to really get comfortable with the area.
 
Old Nov 20th, 2002, 03:00 PM
  #6  
Mike
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I would also skip the Waterford Crystal factory. There are no good deals there.

The castle banquet was entertaining. It is one of those things that you would want to do once for the experience. It really wasn't that bad.

Do 2 nights in Dingle (skip the Ring of Kerry -- too commercial). Make sure you go up the Connor Pass to Dingle. Breathtaking views.

We also loved Kinsale and did 2 nights there.

Good luck. Wherever you go, you will love Ireland. Just remember, you can't do everything in 10 days, so take it easy, do a section of Ireland, relax, enjoy, don't get into the "hurry up to see everything" mode. Plan to go back next year.
 
Old Nov 21st, 2002, 07:30 AM
  #7  
Debbie
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You know , it is interesting to me how different people see things.

I loved the Waterfod Crystal Factory. I found the tour to be very informative, and the showroom amazing. I got some great deals on Christmas ornaments and a few other things - I checked out the prices when I got home, and realized I saved a bunch.

The rest of Waterford didn't do much for me, but I can't wait to go back to the factory.
 
Old Nov 21st, 2002, 10:10 AM
  #8  
Gayle
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My 2 cents: personally loved staying at St. Clarin's 18 miles south of Galway. Take computer directions for navigating the highways to Connemara--beautiful driving area. Have Irish coffee at Ballynahinch Castle. Stop by Ashford Castley for a walk-a-round. My other favorite area was Bantry Bay and Glengariff--a bit remote to get to though. If you go all the way to Donegal, plan to buy lots of tweed. Stay at Greenmount House in Dingle. Have fun. Oh, yes, don't use the car in Dublin!
 
Old Nov 21st, 2002, 10:52 AM
  #9  
bill
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Debbie:

I agree with the notion of staying in a place for two or three nights, especially if you are going to explore in depth. What I find can be hard in Ireland is making longer trips and returning. I have found if you are genereally going in a direction, that there is no reason to make the return trip to a central location just to avoid the "packing and unpacking". Traveling in Ireland is pretty slow and I'd much rather pack and unpack if it avoids a 2-3 hour trip, especially in the dark. This may be different for me, because I don't have much to unpack. In times that I am only staying one night at a place I usually make sure that I pack a smaller bag that will contain everything I need for a few nights. It prevents having to lug a lot of stuff around. Then when I settle in a place for a few nights, I spend a few moments reorganizing. My plans usually involve a combination of single and multiple night. I usually reserve the multiple night places and usually "wing it" on the single nights.

I do agree that there are probably some fine shops in Killarney that most people miss. I have been told that, but it does require that you wander through some other places. I didn't mean to offend on the tacky gift statement. It's just that you have to wade through so much of it to get to the good stuff.

I thought the factory tour at Waterford was interesting, but I'm not sure that I would go out of my way for it.

But we all manage to have fun over there, don't we?

Bill
 
Old Nov 21st, 2002, 11:22 AM
  #10  
Debbie
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Bill,
I understand your perspective on single nights - no , it doesn't make sense to drive 2 or 3 hours just to avoid packing up. But if there are a bunch of things that kind of spoke out of one town, using it as a base can be easier than moving around. I try to plan for things that can be seen on the way there and back - to make the drive back more enjoyable.

For my trip in April I have sprinkled in a few 1-nighters. Our first night is is Doolin, our last in Bunratty, and then in the middle we have 1 night in Kinsale - break up the drive from Kilkenny to Killarney. all of our other stops are 2 or 3 nights.

Another issue for me ( and maybe this is because it is usually me and my mother travelling) is that I don't like leaving my suitcases in the car any longer than necessary - yes I know things can disappear from a B&B , but I always feel that there is less of a chance for theft if they are not in the car when sightseeing. This next trip especially , since we will have a station wagon, I have a lot of concerns about leaving the suitcases exposed while visiting sights on the way from one town to another.
 
Old Nov 21st, 2002, 11:47 AM
  #11  
bill
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Debbie:

We probably do about the same thing when we travel. Have fun in April, I'll be there in May.

Bill
 
Old Nov 21st, 2002, 04:44 PM
  #12  
Krista
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We did the different place every night. And although it was a little tiring, it was fun b/c we had a different experience every night. Also how we drove our trip that would of meant for a lot of back tracking. My hubby and I packed in one large suitcase and one small suitcase (carry size). We could put two days of clean clothes in the small suitcase that way we only took the big one in every other day or so. Worked really well. Espeically since only one real suitcase can fit in the trunk.

As for Waterford, I would go back to Ireland just for the factory there. I was amazed at the whole process (and of course the shopping). My husband though thought it was neat not spectacular. Must be a male thing. =)

Don't stay in Doolin Connie. You can see everything you want on your drive up to Galway, and that way you don't loose a whole night there. It was a lovely little town but we would of missed staying in Cashel and seeing the Rock of Cashel lit up at night.

Are you doing bed and breakfasts or castles or hotels or all of the above??
 
Old Nov 22nd, 2002, 02:39 PM
  #13  
Denise
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Is this the same Krista who hated Ireland and thought everyone there was rude?
 
Old Nov 22nd, 2002, 06:33 PM
  #14  
Krista
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Just because I didn't like the people doesn't mean I didn't like the sites. I was amazed at the different ruins and castles and such. I didn't say everyone one there was rude, just found the servers in pubs were. And whether I liked the people or not also doesn't mean we didn't have a good driving plan.
 
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