Last week we pounced on a too-good-to-pass-up airfare to Dublin from Canada, so my husband and I will be in Ireland October 17-25 with our 4 year old daughter. I did a 2 week home exchange and driving holiday in Ireland back in August 2000 (Dingle was my favourite) but my husband and daughter are going for the first time.
We arrive at 7:00 a.m. on October 17 (it will be 3:00 a.m. for us so not planning anything too strenuous for the first day) and have 7 nights, departing around 8:30 a.m. on October 25 (so our last night will need to be in Dublin's city centre or near the airport).
Our daughter is a frequent flier and adapts really well to travel. She is comfortable in restaurants and seldom naps now. Accommodation with a separate sitting area would be ideal as we're awake for about 3 hours per day while she is still sleeping, but regular hotel rooms have also worked fine for us (though in summer weather when there was always a balcony or porch to sit on).
I am hoping for some guidance on how to adapt an itinerary for a fall visit with a child. We are particularly interested in spectacular scenery, relaxing and people-watching. We would also like to appreciate some pub music.
Places to Visit: I am thinking we should plan for two, or at most three, different locations staying 2-4 nights at each and renting a car to get from place to place (except in Dublin.) Dublin is a must for my husband. I loved Dingletown, the Slea Head bike ride and Conor Pass and would enjoy it again but also interested in seeing something new - Ring of Kerry? Portrush and the Antrim coast? I am particularly interested in spectacular scenery. How does the Antrim coast compare with the Ring of Kerry and Dingle Peninsula? Would I be sorry I didn't go back to Dingle? Is it realistic to consider Dublin (3 nights)/Dingle (2 nights)/Portrush Antrim (2 nights)? Or simplify to: Dublin (4 nights)/Dingle (3 nights)?
Weather: is it realistic to plan scenic drives/lots of outside time in October?
Sights/activities with a child: many of the activities I would enjoy on my own (such as guided tours) aren't really practical with a pre-schooler. Similarly, we'd love to hear some pub music, but it would probably only work in the afternoon as we'd have to bring our daughter with us. Can anyone offer advice on family sights or activities that will be fun for our daughter and also fun for us as well?
My husband would love a round of golf while we are in Ireland. Can anyone recommend a reasonably priced course somewhere around Dublin or Dingle?
Thanks for any advice.