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Hostels/B&B's in Dublin, Cork, and Galway

My husband and I are trying to plan a trip of Ireland for about 10 days in May 08'. We have never been to Ireland before and think that we will fly into Dublin and stay in Cork and Galway for a portion of our stay, ending in Dublin again.

I have a couple of questions I was hoping people could help me with:

What would be the best way to travel between these cities? We are looking for easy, stress-free traveling.

What Hostels/B&B's would you recommend? We are looking for the best balance of clean/good location etc. with price. We would also prefer to stay in a private double room with or without shared bathroom.

For a laid back late-20/yearly-30 year old couple just looking to meet good people, drink in good pubs, and see beautiful countryside/architecture, is there other cities (or different cities) in Ireland that you would recommend highly?

Thank you so much!

Posted by
1806 posts

If you have not already booked airfare, I would suggest you fly open jaw (into Dublin and out of Shannon - or vice versa). It could be well worth the extra airfare to avoid backtracking.

Many people choose to rent cars for their stay, but it is easy to get between your 3 cities via train or bus. If you base in the cities, you can take small group day tours to the sights in the countryside and not have to move around so much (i.e., from Galway, you could take a day tour to Aran Islands, Cliffs of Mohrer, the Burren, Connemara, etc) . With 10 days, you have approximately 3 days in each city with plenty of time for tours or you could rent a car for a day and make your own tour.

Read reviews of hostels online at places like and pretty much any B&B in the RS Ireland guide is a safe bet for being clean and well located.

Posted by
3 posts

Thank you for the advice!

Any other recommendations out there?

Posted by
41 posts

I would recommend renting a car out of Dublin airport. My husband and I did this for honeymoon last June and had no problems ($300 US for a wk.) The roads and signage were excellent and armed with a good map, we found driving to very enjoyable.

As for Galway we stayed at the Balcony House B&B (Rick's listing), but were not terribly impressed (poor value for the money). In Cork, we enjoyed the town of Kinsale. We stayed at the Old Bakery B&B (35 euros pp). I'm not sure if it was their normal crowd, but when we were there the place was filled with couples in their mid-20s to 30s.

If you want to see the countryside, I would recommend Dingle(covered widely in Rick's book). You can't beat the scenary and it's in between Galway and Cork. We are in our mid-20s and really enjoyed the pub scene in Dingle Town.

We followed an itenerary similar to yours and flew in & out of Dublin...Dublin to Galway only 3 hrs by car, Cork to Dublin about 4 1/2. Good Luck!

Posted by
3 posts


So as a follow up question, would we need to have a car while we were staying in the cities (for example, the B&B you recommended in Cork)? Or could we rent the car just for the day that we travel? Did you have to buy outside car insurance? I was told once that your car insurance policy on your vehicle covered rental cars.

Lastly, was there a B&B or hostel in Galway that you would recommend, since you weren't very impressed with the one you stayed at.

Posted by
9363 posts

Especially not in Ireland. Don't trust your credit card's insurance, either.

Posted by
1806 posts

Try the Four Seasons B&B in Galway on College Road. Price is good, very clean, less than 10 minute walk from B&B to Eyre Square/Train/Bus Station. Easy walk to lots of shops, pubs and restaurants.

Posted by
6 posts

For Dublin I would highly recommend the Harrington House Hostel located on Harrington St. It is a clean, nice, quiet, yet conveniently located hostel which will not empty out your pockets. They serve a basic yet decent continental breakfast, staff is friendly, and there is a bus stop across the street for easy access to sites a bit farthur afield i.e. Kilmainham Gaol.

As for Cork, all I can say is DON'T stay at Sheila's. It is a typical hostel and while my experience was okay, given the choice I would not stay there again. I've heard the Aaran Tourist Hostel is a nice place and they have a resident dog, Reilly!

As for the best way to travel between those cities, the bus is nice because you get to see the countryside but the train is by far faster.

Have fun!