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Would love advice on my Ireland itinerary / is it too ambitious?

I've been to Ireland once in 2014 and did a semi-similar trip (but my trip was longer, i did Cliffs of Moher/Burren, Aran Islands, Galway, Dingle, Cork, Trim, and Dublin) and i am bringing my boyfriend for the very first time. We are both on-the-go travelers and enjoy sleeping in a new place every night, just want to make sure i am not overdoing it or burning us out. Thoughts?

Day 1

Flying into Shannon from NYC (on a red eye, we plan on taking melatonin to get a full night sleep on the flight) - landing at 10am , pick up rental car, go to cliffs of moher + doolin cave and/or ailwee cave (any preference? or are the caves not worth the trouble)
lunch in Doolin

explore Limerick / dinner in Limerick

sleep in Limerick

***due to the amount of people concerned for sleep deprivation, an alternate option could be:

Day 1

Fly into Shannon from NYC, get rental car, go to Limerick hotel and nap, get lunch in Limerick, then Sunset at cliffs of Moher/ dinner in Doolin

sleep in Limerick

Day 2

wake up in Limerick, drive to Dingle

explore Dingle peninsula

lunch/dinner in Dingle area

Sleep in Dingle

Day 3

Wake up in Dingle

Do Ring of Kerry not sure on lunch yet, maybe we pack sandwiches

dinner in Killarney

sleep in Killarney

Day 4

wake up in Killarney

maybe do Killarney national park? or straight to blarney castle. probably pack sandwiches for lunch

dinner in Cork

sleep in Cork

Day 5

wake up in Cork

Kilkenny castle / Dunmore caves

sleep in Kilkenny

Day 6

Wake up in Kilkenny

straight to Dublin / returning rental car in city centre

Book of Kells / Jameson distillery (we are skipping Guinness factory because I've already gone and my bf isn't a beer fan)

dinner around temple bar area

Day 7

Early flight out of Dublin (7am)

i think if we dropped something i would be ok since i have done a similar trip already, and my bf doesn't care either way as long as we're exploring lol. i think cork was my favorite so i was on the fence about doing 2 nights in cork and ditching either killarney or kilkenny..? also i am very comfortable with driving the small country roads and am aware they can take time, I've driven in over 25 non-American countries overall (mostly solo trips)

Thanks in advance!!!!!

Posted by
6481 posts

Not to bad but I’d substitute Portmagee for Killarney.
So Dingle to Gap Of Dunloe, lunch in Killarney. Drive to Portmagee, cliffs Of Kerry, dinner and spend the night.

Wake early drive via Moll’s Gap to the Muckross House and Gardens In Killarney National Park. Tour.
Grab lunch then make your way to your Cork accommodation. Sin E for some Irish Music then dinner. Then a good nights rest before you head off to Blarney.

Just a different concept to ponder.


Posted by
582 posts

Definitely go to the national park in Killarney and either do a jaunting car or rent bikes to go through the Gap of Dunloe. I would skip Cork and Blarney (tourist trap) and go to Kinsale and visit Charles Fort.