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9 Day Fall Trip to Galway, Cliffs, Dingle, and Dublin

Having found this travel forum enormously helpful as we planned our recent trip, I just wanted to share some tips and thoughts with other travelers. We recently returned and found late September/early October to be a wonderful time to travel in Ireland. Great weather and no crowds. We flew into Dublin and drove directly to Galway (a bit challenging on little sleep, but a short drive, so do-able.) Stayed in the Park House Hotel (Rick's recommendation) which was easy to find and didn't require navigating city streets. Parking was included, also. A day and a night in Galway with a delicious dinner at Kirwan's Restaurant. The next day, we had a leisurely drive to Doolin with several stops in the Burren. We had two nights at the Half Door B&B which was very nice and super convenient as we could walk to dinner at several nearby pubs. We had calm weather and blue skies and so took the boat to the Inisheer. We enjoyed biking around the island as well as the return boat ride which gave another view of the Cliffs of Moher.

Then we drove onto Dingle via the River Shannon ferry. In Dingle we stayed at the beautiful Greenmount House and began a 4 day, 3night self-guided walking tour arranged by Wonderful Ireland Walking Tours. Peter of Wonderful Ireland was so helpful in arranging this trip for us. We walked between 6 and 8 miles daily (our suitcases were moved to the next night's B&B). Breakfast and lunch was provided by each inn, as well as dinner one night. The directions for each day's walk were excellent and the scenery stunning. Mostly we followed the Dingle Way, walking through fields, along beaches, and country roads. It was a wonderful way to experience the Irish countryside. We left our car at the first B&B in Dingle and on the last day, Peter arranged a ride back to the car. We also enjoyed walking around Dingle town (great crafts and restaurants). Our longest drive was back to Dublin, where we ditched the car at the airport and then had a final 3 nights/2 days in Dublin. We stayed at Buswell's Hotel (also recommended by Rick) and could not have been better in terms of being well located and quiet. You can't see everything in a 9 day trip, but for our first trip to Ireland, this was a great introduction to Ireland. If I was doing it over again, I might have arranged to fly in/out of Shannon for one way so as to avoid having to do the roundtrip to Dublin. Best of luck to all of you planning your trips.

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