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Ireland-Car vs. Bus/Train

I know the trains are not all that great in Ireland, but what about the bus? We are flying into Dublin, then we want to go to Kilkenny and Dingle. We have to return to Dublin.

Posted by
881 posts

Most will tell you car really is they way to go. Prices are reasonable, most are high mileage, and you can do some great scenic driving yourself.

That being said, the buses are clean, efficient, well run, and inexpensive. And also take away the hassle of parking, and driving and Irish roads (second most accident prone in Europe).

Personal choice really. If you don't want to drive, and just take scheduled tours, buses are an OK way to go. You'll probably get more out of a car though. :)

Posted by
32201 posts


As you mentioned, the transportation choices in Ireland aren't as well established as in other places in Europe. I suspect that's one of the reasons a lot of travelers choose to hire a Car (I decided on a RS tour instead - it was incredible!).

Getting from Dublin to Kilkenny is not difficult. There are trains departing from Dublin Heuston station to Kilkenny at regular intervals. Travel time is about 1H:54M, with no changes.

However, the trip to Dingle is a bit more challenging. I wasn't able to easily find any Bus connections from Kilkenny to Dingle. The most direct method might be to return to Dublin by train, and then take a train to Tralee which is a local "transportation hub". From there you can get a Bus to Dingle, as the distance is fairly short.

Travel via Tralee would work well on the return trip also, as you'll end up in Dublin.

Hopefully someone else here can provide an easier route.

Good luck and happy travels in the Emerald Isle!

Posted by
10215 posts

Thanks for your replies. I leave next week and I have a car reserved. My post was done immediately after finishing my taxes (yes, I am a procrastinator...except when it comes to travel plans... ;)) and discovering I owe Uncle Sam and the State of California as much money as my trip is going to cost. I was just trying to think of ways to save some money. In the long run I don't think we would save much by giving up the car and it would not make for as good a trip. So, the car stays. I will just have to think of other ways to economize. I think that eating is highly over rated. Now I just have to convince my husband of that!