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Realistic Driving Times in Ireland

After hearing that Google Maps doesn't always give the most accurate times for driving in Ireland. How long would the following routes take:

  1. Galway to Doolin (Google maps = 1.5 - 2hours depending if go through the Burren)
  2. Doolin to Killarney (Google maps = 2.5 hours)
  3. Cork to Rock of Cashel (Google maps = 1.5 hours)
  4. Kilkenny to Dublin (Google maps = 1.5 hours)

Just want to make sure these times aren't too far off. And any ideas how many times I would need to need to get gas for this road trip?


Posted by
16893 posts

Those estimates are similar to what Rick's Ireland book shows on the map on p. 513. When in doubt, round them all up by a half-hour, which in this case is +33% on most. offers similar information. I highly recommend going through the Burren.

Posted by
2261 posts

Hi Meg, we found that on highways, or the "M" roads the times were reasonably accurate. That pretty much held true on the smaller "N" roads for us, too. Most any other road, for example the R478, are smaller two-lane roads where you can easily get stuck behind slow moving trucks, farm vehicles, etc, if you add fifty percent to these portions you're pretty safe.
It's hard to make good time in Ireland, and it's best to allow plenty of time between sights for this reason.
With small cars generally available, and relatively short distances to cover, we were never in an 'oh my gosh we don't have enough fuel' situation. I do recommend an automatic transmission, and full coverage with Super CDW and zero deductible-Ireland is hard on cars!
Have a great trip.

Posted by
135 posts

As a rule of thumb (having driven for 30 years in Ireland) I would recommend that you calculate driving time on a '40 miles per hour' basis - it will be a little less than that if you are in really remote areas (West Cork; Ring of Kerry etc) or passing through multiple towns. On the other hand, if driving the trunk routes between cities, than you can estimate on at least 50 mph.

Happy travelling!