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What order for these sights-Galway to Dublin?

What order for these sights-Galway to Dublin?

Feb 8th, 2010, 11:06 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 50
What order for these sights-Galway to Dublin?

Our family, including 3 kids-youngest 11, have 2 weeks in Ireland. Will travel the Antrim coast to Donegal where we have 3 days, then 3 days in Mayo, 2-3 days Galway. Sight-seeing, but also to visit family.
Our last 2 days will be Dublin.

So in the 3-4 days remaining can I get suggestions please for a route??

Things we would like to do:

* Dinner at Bunratty castle . Would this area be the right distance for the first night??
* National Stud and/or Coolamore Stud (are either of these near?)
* Doolin- or an Irish music centre (maybe this could be a day trip from Galway, or we could see it on the way through-but would miss the music, which I suppose is at night?)
* Glendalough
* Blarney castle

And if time permits any combination/recommendation for how
Dingle, Kenmare, ROK would fit in.

What would be a sensible route, and where would we overnight?

The very last leg of a 2 month trip- all help appreciated
ber is offline  
Feb 9th, 2010, 12:50 AM
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 3,654
ber - I'm so glad to see somebody is going to Northern Ireland! We did a two week trip around the whole of Ireland last year and you may want to do a quick read through it with a good road map of Ireland beside you as I commented on the routes we took. This may help in your planning:
tod is offline  
Feb 9th, 2010, 02:02 AM
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Join Date: May 2007
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Thank you Tod- in fact I have previously saved your report to Favourites, because it was such a pleasure to read. Also I was tossing up going in a Motorhome, but we have ultimately decided against it.
In a way it would be nice just to meander on our last 3 or 4 days, but by the same token if we could hit a few of the things on our list, in an organised fashion it will be things for the "memory box" (I still remember going to Bunratty's when i was a child!)
Can any Irish natives or visitors help out?
ber is offline  
Feb 9th, 2010, 08:24 PM
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 159
Just to clarify, are you flying into Belfast? If so, cool.

With 3 or 4 days between Galway and Dublin, you can probably do at least a few of the things you'd like, more or less depending on how much time you want to spend on the move.

Galway to Bunratty for dinner is easy, less than 2 hours I think. Lots of people dislike the touristy nature of the dinner there, but hey, you're a tourist. The food isn't the greatest, but the overall experience was a better time that some other things I've done for dinner while traveling.

Doolin is about an hour back toward Galway from Bunratty, but Ennis is quite close and could maybe serve to fill your Trad music needs. Not sure of the best places for it, but I'm sure that there are quite a few there.

With just a few days left, your best option is to probably either choose to spend the rest of the time in the west, or to start heading east toward Dublin. A day or 2 in Dingle is certainly possible, as would be spending time in Kenmare and doing the ROK. Doing both might stretch those few days a little thin. Personally, I liked Kenmare more than Dingle. But maybe the kids would like seeing Fungie the Dolphin in Dingle better? Keep in mind a good chunk of your last day - at least 4 or 5 hours - will probably be spent getting to Dublin.

If you head east instead, you could aim for visiting Kilkenny with a stop at the Rock of Cashel along the way. Glendalough or perhaps Wicklow also being on the itinerary before hitting Dublin. Lots of great views as you pass through the Wicklow mountains.

Getting late, and these are just a few things that pop into my head. You mention meandering, and I've found that to be a good strategy Seeing where the road takes you when you wake up in the morning sometimes works out better than the things you plan.
jefe is offline  
Feb 10th, 2010, 03:03 AM
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Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 50
great-that's the info I was after.
Didnt realise Bunratty only 2 hrs from Galway. Would it make more sense then to head from Galway to Dingle, stay around there the first night, then head back to Bunratty for the next night, and east on the route you outlined for the next 1-2 nights?
Do you know if the National Stud is anywhere near that route?
Thanks for taking the time!
ber is offline  
Feb 10th, 2010, 03:03 AM
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Posts: 50
And yes- we are flying into Belfast
ber is offline  
Feb 10th, 2010, 03:47 AM
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The National Stud is in Kildare, not far from Dublin. You could plot a route into Dublin that includes both the National Stud and Glendalough. It should be a route that does not involve too much driving, because you will want time to enjoy both places. It would work well if, for example, you were in Galway the night before and left shortly after breakfast.
Padraig is offline  
Feb 10th, 2010, 10:39 AM
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Posts: 525
I know my niece and nephew (teens)enjoyed the Bunratty Castle dinner...and so did everyone else. You could spend the day going to see the Cliffs of Moher and touring the Burren and/or the park; the castle is fun to explore. There is also good shopping at the Woolen Mills.

I would head to Dingle for the next night which would give you plenty of music and activity, shopping choices. The Small Bridge had nice traditional music and my niece and nephew were OK there. Stay in town so you can walk around and enjoy. We liked the boat trip to see Fuhghi. The Slea Head loop is beautiful and lots of sights. We also did horseback riding just outside of Dingle.

The next day you could head toward Killarney and tour Ross Castle and/or the Muckross House then take the scenic road thru the park past Ladies View to Kenmare for the night. Kenmare is another nice small town to stay in with opportunities for music, shopping (I keep mentioning cause it seemed like a priority with my niece and nephew), and there is even a small stone circle on edge of town.
Tip...when going to listen to music, get there early and find a table close to where muscicians sit then have pub dinner till show.

Then you would have to head to Dublin which would be a long drive. This is a good route planning site but you should add to driving times...so at least 5 hours with route passing National Stud. We did not visit here but we did go to Glendalough which was interesting...lots of history.

Sounds like a wonderful family trip!
chip is offline  
Feb 10th, 2010, 04:23 PM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 746
I've been to the Bunratty dinner lots of times, with just me and dh and also a group of friends and the last time dh and I gathered 26 friends (and friends of friends, and relatives) and sponsored a CIE tour (I chose my own itinerary) and everyone LOVED it...and, I think the food is good..not 5 star dining but good!! I have also been to the barn dinner with singing and dancing, that is fun too but my favorite is Bunratty Castle dinner. Just my 2 cents.
Shadow is offline  
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