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Irish highlights itinerary help (6 days)

Hi lovely people,

Can you squeeze some southern highlights of Ireland before Central Europe if you only have 6 days max? I'll be hiring a car.

16th May - Arrive in Cork
17th May - Cork/Blarney Castle
18th May - Drive to Galway via Cliffs of Moher
19th May - Galway to Dublin
20th May - Dublin
21st May - Dublin
22nd May - Fly out of Dublin

Could I do it in an even shorter time? (eg is 3 nights in Dublin too much? Or eg Galway as stopover for lunch instead of overnight to have an extra night in rest of EU)

Or should I forget it and save for a separate trip to do Ireland properly? Thank you so much for all advice.

Posted by
6500 posts

Ideally on the way to Galway I'd be adding in Killarney and the Dingle peninsula as a minimum on the way to Galway, but that needs more days.

It feels very much a taster, to be followed at a later date with a separate dedicated trip. A gentle trip on arrival day in Cork would be to go down to Cobh for the emigration museum. It's a very short journey, and one easily done by train from Cork (Kent) station (rather than driving on your arrival day after the TA flight). Cobh generally is a lovely town for an easy walk around on Day 1. The train arrives adjacent to the Museum, and right in the centre of town.

You don't need the car in Dublin itself, in my opinion, so would suggest going straight to the Airport on 19 May, off hire the car then use transit to get around Dublin.

Galway for lunch only (not staying overnight) feels very much like trying to shorten the time too far, too rushed.

Posted by
4441 posts

Depending on what you want to see in Dublin, I would cut out day 20 in Dublin, drive to Dublin on the 20th, maybe leave Galway early in the morning and stop at Glendalough or Kilkenny on your way to Dublin. Depending on what you want to see in Galway, I would consider skipping it completely.

Posted by
1995 posts

It is a bit of a blink and you miss it itinerary - You definitely couldn't do it in any shorter time unless you cut out Galway and just did Cork and Dublin. Why Blarney Castle - or is it to kiss the Blarney stone?

Cork to Galway via Clifs of Moher is 250 KM and a minimum drive of five hours PLUS time for stops. Allowing time to see teh cliffs and have lunct etc it is effectively a full days drive. You aren't going to have much time to see Galway - what is it that attracts you to Galway?

If it was me, I'd either forgot it and save for a separate and lot longer holiday OR just stay in Dublin and include a couple of trips out from the city. A day trip to Powerscourt Gardens and the early Christian site of Glendalough in the Wicklow Mountains is always popular. The other one would be the neolithic site of Newgrange along with Trim Castle.

Posted by
12 posts

Why Blarney Castle - or is it to kiss the Blarney stone?

No I don't want to kiss the stone, but I'd love to to see the castle! Seems it's only about 15 minutes away from Cork city so it would be an easy thing to tick off.

Posted by
12 posts

You don't need the car in Dublin itself, in my opinion, so would suggest going straight to the Airport on 19 May, off hire the car then use transit to get around Dublin.

You're so right. That's a really good idea actually. Would shave off a bit of $ too as car hire seems quite expensive over there! Thank you.

Posted by
1995 posts

"it would be an easy thing to tick off."

Now that comment really does worry me. Is this a tick list itinerary? You really are selling Ireland short.

Posted by
12 posts

"it would be an easy thing to tick off."
Now that comment really does worry me. Is this a tick list itinerary? You really are selling Ireland short.

Thanks for your concern. Blarney Castle would be on my itinerary whether I was doing 6 days or 3 weeks. I just meant it's easy to go to because I will be in Cork and it's on my 'list' anyway.

Of course Ireland deserves much more than 6 days. My international flights are already booked (hindsight is a wonderful thing and I don't have unlimited time off work sadly!). I'd hoped I could try and find 5-6 days to see even just a small part of Ireland in between England and before I fly to central Europe.

Posted by
4293 posts

The easy answer to your question is yes, you can absolutely do this. Other thoughts:
I would not want to have fewer days if you have this many.
Depending on when you go, the grounds at Blarney Castle are beautiful, even without the stone.
Consider adding the Rock of Cashel on this day.
And just decide on your priorities - if I had to, for a taster, I would probably use one of your Dublin days in Cork for the Blarney/Cashel day and a day for lovely Cobh (and do Cobh by public transportation the first day to give you an extra day before driving). And not because I don’t like Dublin. But there’s not a wrong choice.
I have NOT done this, but it is often recommended when arriving in Dublin to take the bus from the airport direct to Galway and get a car there. That makes me wonder if you can’t do the reverse: turn your car in in Galway when done and bus to Dublin - IF the savings are worth it.

This is all a much faster pace than I like. However I have done similar with friends who DO like to travel at this pace and it was a great trip.

Posted by
12 posts

Thanks all. I have made the tough decision not to go to Ireland. It's all just very tight. Ireland deserves better! It's a shame because I'm from Australia and it's so far away hence I wanted to do as much as I could.

I will instead spread the 6 days out with 3 extra in England and the other 3 somewhere along my central Europe itinerary. Thanks again for all your advice. I'll keep it for next time!