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Any imput or advice on my prelimary itinenary would be appreciated.

Hi guys. Just wondered if anyone had input on my mid-May Republic of Ireland itinerary. Here it goes. Thanks in advance.

Dublin. 2 nights

Kilkenny. 1 night. Straight shot or arrive via Wicklow/ Glendalough route.

Kinsale. 2 nights. Visit Rock of Cashel and Cahir Castle on the way. Hubby wants to play at Old Head the next day while I discover the Charles fort/town.

Kenare. 2 nights. Via the N71. Maybe hit Mizen Head or Sheep's Head. The second day the Beara Peninsula.

Dingle. 2 nights. Head to Dingle via N71 through Moles Gap, Ladies View on to Killarney. Check out Gap of Dunloe and/or Tork waterfall. Day two, check out Dingle peninsula.

Doolin. 1 night. Via ferry. The coastal route to Cliffs of Moher.

Clifden. 1 night. Connemara. Sky Road.

Westport. 1 night. Kylemore Abbey, Doolough and through Louisburgh. Maybe still have time to bike the Great Western Greenway.

Galway. 1 night. If did not get a chance to bike Great Western Greenway, do this in the morning. Drive to Galway.

Dublin. 1 night. Fly out the next day.

I wanted to get my itinerary down before making decisions on where to stay. Nights will be reserved for the Pubs of course.

Posted by cmwilsonpdx
3 posts

I know from our trip a couple of years ago to England/Scotland that the fewer 1 nighters you have, the more time you have to do the things you really came to do.

We are doing a similar itinerary (although in the opposite direction) in the Republic after visiting Northern Ireland, in September. After 3 or 4 tries I engineered ours to pick up a car in Dublin and immediately leave to our first destination. That gave me room to do 3 nights in a row in Dublin before flying out, which meant 2 full days rather than 1 full and partials.

And while not for everyone, we are basing in Cong while we are in that part of the country, and doing day trips to Clifden and other sights in the area to avoid moving every night. Then we are moving on to Dingle next. Cong is the one place my husband asked to stay since he's a huge John Wayne and John Ford fan (and we can't afford Ashford Castle ; ) )

Posted by Frank
Tresana, Highlands Ranch, CO, USA
16820 posts

You will not like response 'cause it going to be a bit blunt. But it is a crazy schedule -- 14 nights with 8 location changes. When you change locations you lose a min of a half day and often more between checking in and out of hotels, packing/unplacking, finding the train, finding the hotel and then getting oriented to the new location. All you are going to see is the inside of a lot trains, taxis, and hotel reception areas. Even if using a rental car is not much better because someone has to do the driving, finding parking spaces, etc. And staying just one night?? It is a drive by trip. Personally I would prefer to spend more time in each location with fewer stops.

Posted by David
Florence, AL, USA
4773 posts

Looks as if you have studied Ireland very well. Sounds good to me.
We will be there for a short week in May flying into and out of Dublin. We have chosen to stay in a fabulous B&B on the water in the far southwest and take day trips from there
Ireland has so many historical sights that it really takes more than one whirlwind trip to adequately take it in.

Posted by Robert
Colorado Springs, CO
835 posts

While this is indeed a fast paced itinerary, it looks like you've done a lot of advanced planning and have it down to a manageable schedule.
If your timing permits, try to get an early start from Dublin and get to Glendalough early, ie before the visitor center opens at 9:30 - it's a whole different experience to be there without the crowds.
There's a very pretty coastal walk from Kinsale down to Charles Fort. Along the way you can reward yourself with a pint (or lunch) at the convivial Bulmans pub in the village of Summercove - you'll pass right by it on your way.
There's also a pleasant coastal walk along the Cliffs at Kilkee - it's not the Cliffs of Moher but then you won't have to contend with the crowds either. Nice place for a picnic, and there's an interesting statue honoring the actor Richard Harris - interesting because it celebrates his days as a local rugby player in the area.
You're going to love it. Safe travels.

Posted by epltd
1325 posts

I agree with Frank that five consecutive one-nighters are going to eat up a whole lot of your time. It looks like you are more interested in the west of Ireland than elsewhere, so why not fly in & out of Shannon, or at least open jaw with Shannon on one end?

Posted by diveloonie
Eagle River, AK
179 posts

I agree with the others. Two nights is minimum in my opinion. Three is better. Cut out the one nighters and spend more time in fewer locations. You will be happy you did. Slower really is better.

Posted by ewewoolknit
Vermont USA
108 posts

You can't see and experience Ireland in the time allotted. Trying means you miss most of it and experience it on a very superficial level. Pick two or three spots.....explore those areas thoroughly. You won't remotely exhaust them and you'll end up with far better experiences than running all over the place. It's tempting and sounds feasible but a bunch of one nighters is a prescription for a blurry, hectic rat race. Two nighters are hectic enough......better 3-4 nights. Give yourself time to experience and enjoy Ireland not the inside of a car, and checking in and out. And seriously consider the above great advice of flying into and/or out of Shannon to save time and allow greater flexibility.

Posted by sharon
814 posts

I agree with the others that 1 nighters will kill you. You will also see a lot less of the ares that you are stopping in that you think.
Slow your pace, enjoy what you do see and plan to go back!

Posted by Robert
Colorado Springs, CO
835 posts

Avoiding a string of one night stays is generally pretty good advice. Better to unpack once at a central location rather than relocating every night. Since Clifden, Galway and Westport are so close to each other - barely a 1+15 drive between them - you might consider choosing one of them as your base and day tripping from there.
If exploring the local pubs is a priority for you then staying local (ie within walking or stumbling distance) is preferable to hitting the road to get back to your accommodation, and would provide some justification for the daily moves that you propose. Irish drink driving laws are not to be taken lightly.
For planning purposes know that you can drop your rental car in Galway and catch the train into central Dublin prior to your last night if you don't feel like driving back to the city. Would give you most of another day in the Galway area if you wanted to stretch it out a bit.