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Which Map for Ireland

We've decided to take the plunge do a driving tour of Ireland next year. The guys will drive and navigate for each other.
We will start in Belfast, but won't get the car until leaving Dublin. Route will be Wicklow Mt. area, Kilkenny, Kinsale, Dingle/Kilarney area, Galway and fly home from Shannon.
Any opinions on which map is best? Should we opt for one with Irish and English town names?

I've heard about Micheline Map with accompanying Green Guide and Ordnancce Survey Maps. Thoughts?
And of course I will have my RS Ireland Tour Book.

Posted by
9363 posts

Michelin is good. But quite honestly, we have usually gotten along just fine with the map they give you with the rental car. The ordnance survey maps are, in my opinion, way too detailed and bulky.

Posted by
1938 posts

Cindy, Prior to our own driving trip last year I bought a both Michelin map and a Collins Road Atlas for Ireland that were helpful in previewing our routes and daily drives. That said - once we got there I rarely referred to them, instead relying on a Garmin GPS unit that kept me out of trouble while traversing country lanes and the smaller cities & towns. The signage in Ireland (including the North) is quite good, so the problem isn't getting from point A to Point B, but rather finding your way to specific urban and rural addresses which neither the map nor the Atlas were much help with given their level of detail. The Garmin never let me down in 9 weeks of travel around the island.

Posted by
145 posts

We have a Garmin that we haven't used in years. I suppose we could DL updates.

Posted by
1938 posts

Using one that you're already comfortable with is a good idea.
We just bought a new one that had up-to-date European (Ireland) maps, then practiced getting used to it at home before we departed. Either way, I think it will be a good investment for you.

Posted by
1291 posts

I use the AA atlas one for Ireland. It shows the place names in both languages in the Republic, and the toll sections of the roads.

Posted by
707 posts

We used the Ordnance Survey atlas for Ireland. We did a lot of back roads in Donegal and connermara. The atlas did the job but I didn't like it nearly as well as my AA atlas for Great Britain. Place names on road signs didn't show up on the map. The map didn't list the sites we were looking for. I would rank the Ordnance survey atlas as ok but I don't know what other irish maps are like, and we were more remote areas do that might have been part of my problem.

Posted by
430 posts

We downloaded updated maps for our Garmin Nuvi which we used daily. We picked up a Collins map at Dublin airport and used it daily as well. Sometimes the Garmin took us on really little roads (most of the time correctly) but when we were in very out of the way places we liked being able to confirm with the map and see the big picture. Many times tiny towns wouldn't come up on the Garmin so we would find a nearby place on the map to navigate towards. We stayed at B & B's all over the country and several times had to rely on the GPS coordinates from the booking site to locate them because the names were not recognized. I would definitely recommend using a combination.

Posted by
15 posts

If your cool with going down sheep roads and roads that can barely fit a VW UP then you will love your GPS.

I tried every setting possible and the GPS still would navigate on roads that should not even be considered roads.

The signs in Ireland was not so bad as what I read. They are actually very helpful and useful. We used the Micheline Map and the AA Green Map book and had no problems.

My wife would read the maps, the GPS would be on "View Map" mode and would not route just show upcoming roads/towns and we found that to be the most helpful.

You will get lost, ask the locals for directions and laugh at the answers and jokes they will tell you. Have fun.

Posted by
20 posts

1st, buy a Tom tom European Maps with lifetime maps for $100 or so from Amazon. Then Get Collins. We had no problem with the combo and drove a couple of weeks.,