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Another plea for itinerary help

Hi, All,

I know that heaps of people have asked for itinerary help and I'm sorry to be repetitive, but nonetheless---need some help as Ireland occupies my #1 "must get to location" before I move back Stateside next May. Mostly, I'm worried that my cousin and I are trying to fit too much in to 8 days. So, any help/advice from those who have been there would be very appreciated.

October 24: arrive in Dublin from Rome and cousin arrives from US. Spend night in Dublin.
October 25: Pick-up rental car and drive to Kilkenny. explore Kilkenny
October 26: drive to Kinsale in the late afternoon.
October 27: explore the area and then drive to Killarney.
October 28: explore the area and then drive to Dingle
October 29: spend time in the Dingle and the Dingle loop
October 30: drive towards Galway, using ferry. Explore Cliffs of Mohr and the Burren.
October 31: spend day in Galway then head back to Dublin.
November 1: spend some time in Dublin before returning to Rome

Thoughts? Are we spending time in places we shouldn't? Or are we missing something? Also, know that we plan to be flexible and stop along the way checking out different sights. Really, I just want to experience Ireland and it's people...I don't want to "have to" do everything if it means missing out on the culture and the landscape.


Posted by
3580 posts

I think leaving out one or two places will allow you time to make stops and enjoy some leisure time. Omit Kinsale or Killarney. Give more time to the Dingle area. If you go without reservations you can stop at b and bs along the way. There is usually parking. Plan to hear some Irish music around Dingle and Galway. If you have time visit an island off the coast near Galway or Dingle. It's a special experience.

Posted by
203 posts

Yes, I think you're trying to fit in too much and won't have much time to enjoy the people, landscape and culture. It looks to me like you are spending only one night in each place except for Dingle. You will spend lots of time just driving, packing and unpacking. Even though places look relatively close on a map, driving will probably take longer than you think. Depending on what you really want to see, I think you could skip Kinsale and Killarney. You could also include the Cliffs and the Burren but skip driving into Galway city. Ireland is wonderful, and I think trying to see less at a slower pace will be more enjoyable.

Posted by
5483 posts

As you want to experience the people and the beauty of Eire I suggest the following. First don't pressure yourself to see it all. Weather may interfere. Might get sick. Who knows? Fit what you can in and believe you will return in the future to see what you missed. That relieves stress and open's your eyes to truly engaging what you are seeing and exploring.

Get a small car with automatic. They still love stick shifts but insist on the automatic and get full coverage. Back roads are tiny. If you've not driven on the opposite of the road nor experienced roundabout give you self time to adjust.

Yes, to picking up the rental the next morning but do it outside of Dublin. Personally and to embrace Ireland's beauty at first blush leave Dublin and head for Glendalough. Explore there early, smile and then via the Sally Gap off to Kilkenny for the night. Make it an early night as in nice dinner a few pints but stay up too late. Get your rest. Up early then an hour or so to the the Rock of Cashel. From there a nice drive to Kinsale. Meander and lunch there. From Kinsale drive to Killarney for the night. Killarney National Park and Muckross house the next day and then off to the Gap of Dunloe (one of the most intriguing and beautiful parts of Ireland) as you drive towards Dingle. I'm having you miss the Ring of Kerry in favor of more time in Dingle to see and experience the Dingle Peninsula. Spend two nights minimum in Dingle. Stay at Angela and John's B and B, Lovely people. Great B and B. Have a pint or two at Foxy John's Hardware. Watch sunset along the harbor. Dingle is such a sweet spot to base out of.

From the Dingle Peninsula off to Galway and the remainder of your planned journey. Just be certain to understand and hour's drive is really about and hour and a half. Slow down. Watch out for sheep, lorries, bicyclists, traps, wagons, etc.

Posted by
161 posts

I am doing just about the same trip, except I have 14 days instead of eight, which will allow two-night stays in most places, and I am flying home from Shannon, which avoids the cross-country trek back to Dublin. But I think your itinerary looks well-planned. I think I would stay in Kenmare rather than Killarney though.

Posted by
264 posts

I've done several similar trips in the last two summers, parts of your plan were identical ti mine. I didn't find the schedule unreasonable, we never felt rushed or that we could not do something for time constraints.

The only suggestion I'd make is that your Dingle to Galway day seems a bit optimistic and very rushed. In each of the last two summers we did that over two days staying in Limerick once, and Ennis another. Both times on our way to Galway we were very glad to have time to wander about the Burren and I think you'd miss out on that with your schedule. There is a lot of stuff t6o fill your day in that area. We also did the Dingle loop at a leisurely pace and still had the evening in Limerick, so you might skip that second night in Dingle.

I'd also consider skipping Killarney. It doesn't look like you have much planned for there (Ring of Kerry, the national park, etc.) and we found it to be unpleasantly congested and very touristy. I think you could get to Dingle from Killarney in a single day (we did it from Waterford) and still,have the evening in Dingle. That gives yo the extra day to stop from Dingle to Galway.

Epilogue - as I was in the act of hitting "reply" I noticed that you are already there. I wish I could have been more timely with my suggestions, I'm leaving the suggestions up for others to consider. Hope the trip went well!