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What to see/do in eastern section of Ireland?

What to see/do in eastern section of Ireland?

Jan 21st, 2015, 04:30 PM
  #1  
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What to see/do in eastern section of Ireland?

In mid to late September we are visiting Ireland for the 3rd time(previously visited at same time of year in 2009 &2010), this time I thought we would visit sites in the eastern part of Ireland since we have already visited the west and southwest areas. We will be flying into and out of Dublin (Shannon has been our in and out airport in the past). Thought we would pick up a rental car and drive to the Giants Causeway (I know this is westward but I really went to see it on this trip) and then travel back towards Dublin visiting sites on the way back. We love to see old historical sites, castles, waterfalls, abbeys, and scenery in general. I think we might do a hop on hop off bus tour once we get back to Dublin.
Any suggestions of things you think we should/or would like to see would be greatly appreciated. Our trip will last 7-8 days depending on how much we decide to see.
REALLY appreciate everyone's help!!
floridapugmom is offline  
Jan 21st, 2015, 05:24 PM
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You might want to visit Dublin first as you will be walking around the city and that helps overcome jetlag. HOHO bus tour is a good idea.

You don't want to have a car in Dublin so plan on picking it up on your way north.

Near the Giant's Causeway, which is truly awesome, there is DunLuce Castle which is a ruin, half of which fell off the cliff into the sea. It is safe now--no worry. Bushmills distillery is in the area if whisky is of interest--not my thing so I haven't been but hear that it is an interesting stop.

I see that waterfalls and scenery are of interest so stop in one of the Glens of Antrim on the way along the coast. Google them or check out a guide book.

Carrickfergus Castle is along the coast not too far north of Belfast. Downpatrick, where St. Patrick is supposedly buried, is near the border.

When you get back in the Republic of Ireleand on the way to the airport, the town of Trim and its castle await you. Likewise the Hill of Tara, New Grange, other prehistoric sites in the Boyne Valley, Mellifont Abbey ruins, Monasterboice Abbey, and enough to keep you busy for twice or thrice your time and more.

and this leaves you with all of the southeast to explore on your next trip!
irishface is offline  
Jan 22nd, 2015, 01:54 AM
  #3  
 
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The Causeway is too far straight off a flight. Belfast is a good option and an easy drive on the motorway.
This map has some points (inc castles and a waterfall) if you zoom into the north coast (sorry google has messed with my icons)
A couple of days in Portrush after a night in Belfast will give chance to look around up there before droping back down and exploring the east coast below Dublin to Waterford for a couple of days then a couple in Dublin before departure?
Tony2phones is offline  
Jan 22nd, 2015, 04:30 AM
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I am going to Belfst in May and there is a lot to see in Belfast for your first day. A black cab tour is 90 min, a visit to City Hall, a tour of the Titanic museum and many nice places to eat. I am searching out Van Morrison's boyhood home. Have to have a picture. One day we are doing the causeway and the other city sights. The first day we are just going to do a black cab tour since we will be a bit jet lagged and check in time isn't till 3. I am sure the hotel will hold our bags.
Dublin has many day trips if you want to use as a base. We are and rented an apartment. I am doing a Wicklow day and maybe jumping on the train to spend a day in another coastal town. Howth is nice and we like Greystone. Dublin museums are free, closed on Mondays though. There is a ton of things to do there. Besides the Guinness and Jameson tour there are great literary walking tours, Trinity college, theater, castles, churches, beautiful parks, shopping and dining.
flpab is offline  
Jan 22nd, 2015, 02:05 PM
  #6  
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irishface and Tony2phones, thanks for the suggestions and map. I wasn't sure if the causeway would be too much right off
the flight or not so really appreciate that info. I really want
to stay in the Republic for the entire trip so I wasn't planning
a trip to Belfast;maybe we'll do Dublin first then head northwest.
Irishface I am definitely going to check out all your castle and scenery suggestions
Anything else either of you could suggest would be greatly appreciate. I can't wait to visit Ireland again!
floridapugmom is offline  
Jan 22nd, 2015, 02:15 PM
  #7  
 
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Makes no sense to go south from the airport just to turn round and go north again? Ireland is an Island, ok two countries but so what. The North is not the same place I stayed in the early 80's despite what the worlds press like to stir up. You will need £Sterling up there but apart from that and the fact the road signs are in MPH not KPH you won't know the difference.
Tony2phones is offline  
Jan 22nd, 2015, 02:27 PM
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The Giant's Causeway is in Northern Ireland.

I also was in Ireland in the 1980s, and again recently. There are no longer even any signs telling you you've crossed a border. Apart from the mph/kph changeover, the highway name will change from N1 (for example) to A1.

I can't recommend Newgrange enough. We were fascinated by that prehistoric site, built without modern tools.
bvlenci is offline  
Jan 22nd, 2015, 03:29 PM
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Thought we would pick up a rental car and drive to the Giants Causeway (I know this is westward I really want
to stay in the Republic for the entire trip so I wasn't planning
a trip to Belfast;maybe we'll do Dublin first then head northwest.

Sorry I told you about Belfast, thought you wert going to Giant's Causeway which is in Northern Ireland.
flpab is offline  
Jan 23rd, 2015, 04:14 AM
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bvlenci, I can't recommend Newgrange enough. We were fascinated by that prehistoric site, built without modern tools.>
I watched an episode of Balleykissngel last night filmed in Avoca and they had a stone exactly like the ones from Newgrange. I am sure it was a prop but you don't forget that place and how they brought those stones there. There is a place in Downpatrick that has a ring of stones that are thought to be brought from the same place that Newgrange brought their stones. Ballynoe: Stone circle
flpab is offline  
Jan 23rd, 2015, 10:38 AM
  #11  
 
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I was just there in November 2013. Belfast is delightful. If you go anywhere near the north, I suggest a lovely hike through Tollymore Forest. Another option (closer to Giant's Causeway) is Glenariff forest - so many waterfalls!

But that is northeast. Purely east coast stuff - Malahide castle was interesting, Newgrange is fantastic. If you see Ballynoe Stone Circle (there is a tree tunnel going to it that's wonderful) then Tollymore forest isn't far from it.

Farther south is Glendalough, Powerscourt Falls, Powerscourt Gardens... I loved the town of Dun Laoghaire, and Bray.
GreenDragon is offline  
Jan 23rd, 2015, 11:55 AM
  #12  
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Thanks guys!! I guess I must have had a brain freeze when I thought we would be going northwest for the Giants Causeway! I really appreciate all of your suggestions for stops to and from there and helping me feel safe going to Belfast.

Tony do you have a suggestion for a mid way stop to the Causeway for our first day in Ireland? I am still trying to decide if we should see Dublin first then head north or what. I am so use to planning a trip to the west and southwest that I am totally unfamiliar of distance times, where to visit, what to do, etc on the eastern side of the Republic as well as the whole of Northern Ireland.

I take it we can get Sterling from an ATM once we cross into Northern Ireland?

Keep the ideas coming friends!
floridapugmom is offline  
Jan 23rd, 2015, 12:10 PM
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No problem getting ATM cash but make sure your bank knows you will be over here N&S get their Fee's sorted. Some ATM's in the UK charge so be careful always try to use one fixed to or in a Bank rather than filling station pub or other.

I would aim straight to Belfast on arrival, Have the afternoon doing a Black cab tour or the Titanic museum. night out in Belfast then move up to the north coast, we like Portrush (Avarest) to explore up there, maybe include Derry?

Then head back down towards Dublin. You can tour from Dublin or drive past into Wicklow/Kilkenny/Waterford before ending up in Dublin.

Points North of Dublin are on the map I linked, south of Dublin depends how far you are aiming, maybe head to Kilkenny then down to Waterford and back up by the east coast route?
Tony2phones is offline  
Jan 24th, 2015, 02:59 AM
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Flpab, Newgrange is not a ring of stones. It's an enormous stone structure, of the type called a passage tomb, with a corridor inside, and a room at the end of the corridor. At the winter solstice, the rising sun shines a beam of light through the opening above the door, illuminating the room at the end of the corridor.

There are some standing stones around the site, but they're thought to date from considerably later.

We were told by the official guide that Newgrange was probably not really a tomb, because they only found the remains of five bodies within it, which is too few for the large community that surrounded it. She said that one hypothesis is that bodies were kept there for a period, perhaps until the winter solstice, and then were buried elsewhere.
bvlenci is offline  
Jan 24th, 2015, 06:00 AM
  #15  
 
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Beginning at the beginning, there's Dublin which in my opinion has lots to see and do. And then must see trips to the north seeing Newgrange but also Hill of Tara and Trim Castle...and to the south for Glendalough and perhaps Russborough House.
Ozarksbill is offline  
Jan 24th, 2015, 12:09 PM
  #16  
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Where can I get information books that show accommodations in Ireland? Planning for our first trip in 2009 I sent away for travel information and received a book that showed pictures and locations of B&B's, Hotels, Self-Catering, etc. but for the life of me I can't remember where I requested that information; of course I just got rid of those about 1 year ago (my bad!) I have looked at the official tourism site but don't see anything like this.

Tony, thanks for the heads up on the currency issue.
floridapugmom is offline  
Jan 24th, 2015, 12:43 PM
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Most things are on line these days,
http://www.discoverireland.ie/where-to-stay/
http://www.discovernorthernireland.com/accomfinder/

If you have specific locations asking on the forums will generally get good suggestions.
Tony2phones is offline  
Jan 24th, 2015, 02:05 PM
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Highly recommend take M 50 going South from Dublin airport, branch off for M 7 and then take N 10 for Kilkenny City.about 1 hour 30 minutes.
Overnight in Kilkenny City at B & B cnocmhuire near Kilkenny Castle. [email protected].
Helen has been welcoming guests to her beautiful home in Kilkenny for the past 30 years.
Park there and walk to Kilkenny Castle 10mins follow your hosts directions and enjoy Kilkenny at leisure.
Dinner at Langtons best known multi- award winning Irish pub.
Next day Follow Helens map to Waterford, see Waterford Glass and Waterford City. Then follow Helens map to Wicklow and visit Irelands
most magnificent natural gardens Mount Usher,
Then see Rossborough House, if you are interested in beautiful homes and paintings, then to Glendalough, and onward to Powerscourt Waterfall and gardens.
Then overnight in North Wickow or South Dublin and next day on to Newgrange via M 50 again, and time allowing to visit Giants causeway. Consult your host in Kilkenny for map and timings, she will not mislead you. If Helen does not have accommodation for your, it is highly recommended you book ahead, she will find you excellent accommodation in Kilkenny.
Enjoy we thoroughly enjoyed our visit to Florida your side of the world during our visit. Have wonderful you have chosen a wonderful time of yer when the weather is usually dry and the nights are still long to allow you a full day for viewing beautiful South East Ireland.
Regards Teresa
Browtal is offline  
Jan 24th, 2015, 03:43 PM
  #19  
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Thanks Teresa for all these suggestions, I will definitely check everything out. Do you remember how long it would take to get from get from North Wickow to the Giants Causeway? That is the only place I really wanted to make sure to see this visit, now that I have seen the dollar to pound rate I don't think we will be visiting Northern Ireland for very long.

Becky
floridapugmom is offline  
Jan 25th, 2015, 03:00 AM
  #20  
 
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Think if you work the £-€ north south comparison things work out about the same. Fuel is slightly cheaper down here, accommodation about even, food and drink mainly cheaper up north.
The days of going UK side for shopping have gone as prices in general have evened out.
Tony2phones is offline  

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