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34 days in Ireland

I’ve put together an itinerary to Ireland, we’re visiting from Australia so we will be doing this just once.
its taken me ages and I’ve ended up with 34 days, rather a long time I know but I would love honest feedback.
So this is what I’m thinking.....

4 days Dublin, all the sights plus Wicklow and a Glendalough region.
3 days Kilkenny, driving to Wexford and explore the region
Kilkenny to Kinsale via Cashel and Cahir.
3 days Kinsale, visiting Cobb, Cork . blarney Castle etc
Kinsale to Kenmare via Mizen Head
2 days Kenmare, Beara peninsula
5 days Killarney, ROK, Dingle peninsula, Skellig Michael, National Park , Muckross etc..
2 days Ennis, cliffs of Moher, the Burren
From Ennis drive to Rossaveal and take ferry across to Inishmore
1 night Inishmore
3 days Clifden, explore Connemara, Galway
1 day Achill Island
4 days in Donegal and region
1 day Portrush and Antrim coast
2 days Belfast
3 days Drogheda
Drive to Dublin and fly home

34 days...too long, too ambitious?
feel free to chop and change.

thanks, Erika

Posted by
133 posts

We Aussies need to make the most of our opportunities. We did UK and Ireland over a period of 50 days. My suggestion for a decent length trip is to have a few downtime days and keep things pretty flexible. Some places won't meet your expectations and others will exceed them.

Posted by
6570 posts

Ireland is really a pretty quiet place. I'd have trouble spending 34 days there. You itinerary moves you around so much.

Posted by
169 posts

Any particular reason for staying in Drogheda? I'd be inclined to spend more time on the north coast, lots to see and do.
I would echo the previous poster's remark about allowing down time. You would be surprised how quickly tiredness can hit you after a few days of touring!

Posted by
1172 posts

For me there is no time that would be too long in Ireland :)

The only place that I love that I do not see on your itinerary is Dingle.

Was that for a specific reason?

Posted by
1978 posts

Not too long and not overly ambitious in my opinion. Fact is that it looks like a well researched and thoughtfully laid out itinerary. Well done.
My comments are minor and are mostly matters of personal preference, but here goes:
Rather than overnighting in Kilkenny my suggestion would be to see the castle and then continue on down to the market town of New Ross. Lots to see in and near the charming little town, plus it's handy for a day trip over to Waterford which itself is worth a half day's meander if you're at all into history.
Good for you for including the Beara peninsula - you'll love it.
Rather than Killarney I'd suggest basing yourselves in the vicinity of Castlemaine. It's about halfway between Killarney & Dingle which makes for easy day trip explorations of the northern half of the ROK and the Dingle peninsula.
I think you're shortchanging the North, and so would suggest adding a day or two there if you can to include the walled city of Derry, more time along the Causeway Coast, and allowing at least a half day to meander down the Antrim Coast - one of the world's great scenic drives in our opinion.
Am guessing that the 3 days in Drogheda are to explore the Boyne Valley, Tara, Newgrange, etc. which is great, but maybe one day too many to do and see everything. Might carve a day there for some extra time in the North.
One logistical comment. On our own extended trips to Ireland the rental car company (Hertz in our case) only allowed rentals for a maximum of 28 days - had to switch cars in mid trip which was a minor pain. You'll want to sort that out with the company to avoid a surprise on getaway day. Likewise, make sure they're aware that you'll be taking the car into the North just to ensure that your insurance covers you there.
All in all I think this is a very well crafted itinerary.

Posted by
333 posts

Best plan for Ireland is not to have a plan. Book a couple of days in Dublin and then rent a car and go into the country. You can get from one side of the island to the other within 8 hours of driving so you never are really that far away from anything.

The weather will play a very big factor in touring and it can change drastically over an hour or two so you will have a couple of days where driving and touring will just plain suck. Better to hang out by a nice fire

Budget about 50-75 Euro for a 3 star hotel or B&B per night outside of Dublin. With that much time there are also a lot short term rentals you can get.

With a data plan and Google Maps you will be able to find your way around everything fine including historical sites that are not in any guidebooks. A couple of days in a small village or town and you'll end up knowing most of the locals especially if you frequent pubs.

The Wild Atlantic Way is some of the best scenery in the world and please take the time to visit Donegal and the Inishowen Peninsula. It's such a treasure and is pretty much ignored by most tourists (and unfortunately the Irish Government)

Derry, Belfast and a trip around the Antrim Coast are also must sees.

If you get bored book a cheap flight out of Belfast or Dublin and visit Scotland, Wales or England or even the continent for a few days and fly back.

Posted by
15 posts

For those of you wondering why she’s spending any time in Drogheda - we were there last October, stopped for lunch on our way to Brú na Bóinne. We stopped in at St. Peter’s Parish and I think the highlight for my husband was seeing Saint Oliver Plunkett’s head! I don’t know that I would spend 3 days there, but it is close to lots of neat stuff.

Posted by
1014 posts

Wife and I did 35 days last summer, touring all of Mid Ireland all the way to Northern Ireland. We did not go to far south. We went to the Ring of Kerry, but that is a far south as we went. We booked airbnb's on our route. All but 1 were great. Having a host you can ask questions about the area is a wonderful plus. When you land, stay in Dublin one night to get over jet lag. The next day, pick up your car, onward you go. When you drive to Dublin, to go home, get there at least one day early if not two. You could add two days from the beginning of your trip to the end, giving you your 4 days there. You do not want to miss your flight due to : road closings, bridges out, strikes that block road, etc. There is plenty of things to do in Dublin for four days.

While in the Burren, go to the Burren Perfumery. Great trip and wonderful scents. They have a tea room that has decent food. Wife bought several bottles of perfume. Not cheap, but great quality. In Belfast, do the Titanic tour and do go see the tender in dry dock. Downtown Belfast is an interesting walk about.