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6 night itinerary


Going to spend 6 nights in Western Ireland. My preliminary itinerary is as follows:

Day 1 - Land in Shannon and proceed to Dingle Peninsula. Ferry to Clare and overnight in Ennis.

Day 2 - The Cliffs of Moher, The Burren, and Galway. Overnight near Galway.

Day 3 - Aran Islands and make our way up to County Mayo. Overnight somewhere.

Day 4 - Up to Donegal. Overnight there.

Day 5 - Down to Newmarket-on-Fergus. Overnight there.

Day 6 - Depart Shannon.

Any comments or suggestions? Thanks.

Posted by
317 posts

Hello Blaise, greetings from Ireland. Derry today actually!

The itinerary is certainly doable, but it does cover a lot of ground and will mean you wont really see much in-depth of Dingle and Donegal (Not a lot of point in going the whole way up to Donegal for one night and then all the way back down to county Clare next day; you'd need two nights in somewhere like Donegal Town, so you could explore around a little on one full day) So maybe drop the night in Mayo.

In my humble opinion, Id overnight in Dingle and not Ennis. For 2 reasons.

  1. You will have just come off a transatlantic flight and you're going to dive headfirst into a minimum 5 hours of driving to get from Shannon to Dingle and then back to Ennis, plus another 2 hours of sightseeing driving time needed. Thats elite.
  2. Dingle is way better.

Actually my heart ached for you a little when I read that you would be in Dingle and yet choose to overnight in Ennis.

But of course, its Ireland, you never know - you may have the best experiences of your trip on that night in Ennis.
Personally, I wouldnt take that chance.

Try for the overnight in Galway also, Its mostly a great town, though of the thousands of people I've brought there on Rick Steves tours over the years, only about 50% have thought that. Generally, but not always, it appeals to more of a younger age-profile traveller.

And the ferry into Clare from Tarbert on the awful bumpy roads, a travel myth. The easiest and most comfortable way is to go to Ennis/Clare/Shannon/The cliffs via Adare and Limerick city. I say that as an expert, I have taken both journeys almost 200 times.

Enjoy my beloved Island. Thanks for choosing Ireland as your holiday destination.

le meas/with respect
Stephen McPhilemy
Rick Steves Ireland tour-guide
Dingle & Derry

Posted by
3279 posts

I can't speak with as much authority as Stephen, but as a visitor who's only made it to Ireland once (so far), we needed several days to enjoy Dingle town and its surroundings on the peninsula. If you just have 6 nights overall, even spending one of them in Dingle would be rewarding.

And we seemed to experience rain about every other day in June -- so even if you've planned a full day of activities (Cliffs of Moher, Burren, etc.) you might wind up spending some of your actual time drying out in a pub with a bowl of hot seafood chowder - not the worst way to while away some time, but you might not get EVERY thing done on your itinerary.

By the way -- are you departing Shannon early on Day 6, or will you have some time that day before your flight out? Do you really have 6 nights, or 5?

Posted by
2 posts

Thank you both for these great suggestions. I haven't been in Ireland since 1968 so this is very exciting. Added a night in Dingle and on Donegal. Cheers.


Posted by
317 posts

Well done Blaise, Cyn and I are relieved for you that you'll get to enjoy an overnight in Dingle!

Ps be prepared for some big changes in Ireland since your last visit in 1968! :)

Stephen McPhilemy