We are planning our itinerary for a 10 day trip to Ireland. Rick's guide suggests that if we have 10 days, we should include Dublin, Dingle Peninsula, Galway, Belfast and County Clare/Burren. I'd like to hear from people about what order to visit these places, how long to stay in each, and suggested towns/places to stay? This is our first visit to Ireland. Are there "don't miss it!" spots that people would recommend? Thanks!
Just returned last week from an 11-day trip to Ireland. Rick's guide and a Michelin map were absolute necessities. We flew into Dublin & stayed 2 nites at Albany House-great location. Rented a car and drove to Glendalough, overnite in Kilkenny. Visited Rock of Cashel and on to Kinsale for 2 nites, 2 nites in Kenmare, 2 in Dingle. Spent the last nite in Ennis as we flew out of Shannon. Driving is stressful; allow an hour to cover 30 miles. We skipped Galway-it seemed too far. As Rick advises: assume you'll return. If possible, get a directory of B&Bs from Ireland tourism bureau before you go. We saw lots of lovely looking places that aren't listed in the big guide books. Save money with picnic lunches. If you take the historical walk in Dublin, skip the one for Trinity College. Take the historical walk in Kinsale & self-guided one in Dingle. Take in a concert. We skipped the Blarney Stone & Ring of Kerry. You'll love Ireland. The people are wonderful. Don't forget raingear!
Thanks for the helpful response. Greatly appeciated!
We just returned yesterday from a 7-day trip to Ireland. It was wonderful, but wish we would have planned on 10 -days to make it more relaxing & less rushed! If we would have had time, we would have spent 2 nights in Kenmare. Check out Michael O'Brien there at the Coachman's Pub& hotel - great music! See the Clifs of Mohr by boat-can book a boat tour in Doolin when you get there. If you tour the Burren Area, get a detailed map in the tourist info. shop -the general maps are too small and not detailed enough. Same goes for Dublin...whether you are walking or driving. Do the Musical Pub Tour in Dublin to get a sense of the music and traditions in Ireland.
B&B's are great! Just book your rooms as you go by using pay phones or going into hotels to ask for their help (free). We had the tourist info. place in Middleton book 2 B&B's for us & they charged us 4 euros/reservation.
If driving, buy CD's there or take CD's to play. The radio stations play lots of "talk" and little music!
You will love Ireland! We just returned, and I'm already planning to go back. Dublin was awesome. Definately do the musical pub crawl...three triangles for sure. If you're into art, skip Belfast and go to Derry. The wall murals are amazing. Also, we went to the Giant's Causeway in Portrush, it was one of my favorites. I agree with the person who suggested taking the boat trip to the Cliffs of Moer. We saw it from top, and wished we had been on the boat. We stayed in Dublin for three nights two days, followed the Rick Steves itenerary...very good. We stayed two nights, one day in Galway but spent the day on the Aran Islands. I would add an extra day to also hang out in Galway, because it's a pretty cool college town. Definately spend a day at Inish Mor. Also, no need to do both the circular tour of the Dingle Penninsula in Rick Steves book and the Scuird Archeaology tour. Rick's tour is enough. You will have a wonderful time!