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Ireland Dilemma

My two college-aged kids and I will be touring Europe after they complete their finals. Our plan is to spend a day in Ireland to rest up after the flight and to give my kids a chance to de-stress after their finals. After this short respite in Ireland, we will fly to Paris to begin our three week tour of Europe. We leave the states in the afternoon and arrive in Shannon the next morning around 9 am. Having said all that, here's my question: Would it be best to go ahead and tour the countryside immediately after we arrive and go to bed fairly early that first night OR should we rest up for the entire first day (not do any touring) and then spend the following day touring the countryside? What would be the best way to alleviate the jet lag??

Thanks for your input.

Posted by
8700 posts

Assuming you'll be renting a car at Shannon, I suggest you explore a bit, stopping frequently to take walks to fight jet lag. Just don't plan to drive very far and do plan to go to bed early.

Posted by
977 posts

Regarding jet lag, how long is the flight to Ireland from the States?

I've done the flight from Oz to Europe a couple of times (23 hours) and have found a good night's sleep is more than enough to recover.

Posted by
50 posts

Non-stop flight from Chicago to Shannon is about 9 hours.

Posted by
80 posts

I agree, tour alittle, with frequent stops to get out and walk, look at things, etc. Plan on going to bed 8 or 9pm local time. this will reset your clock and you will be fine. I find my adrenalin is kicking with the excitement of just being in a foreign country and that keeps me going for a while.

Posted by
14 posts

My only comment is that, once you get there and see it, you might regret spending just one day in Ireland. Personally, I couldn't do it. Given three or four days, you could go south to Dingle peninsula or head west from Shannon to Galway (college town) and into Connemara (an unearthly type of beauty). There really are dozens of shades of green.

Posted by
2785 posts

Hi Donna, I would suggest that you go ahead and tour the country side. Then whatever your bed time at home is go to bed at that time. It's really a shame that you only planned one day in Ireland, I think you will regret it. Have a great time on your trip.

Posted by
83 posts

My girlfriend & I are also flying into Shannon to begin a weeks worth of touring by car in Ireland.

We're only flying in from Paris but I've made hotel reservations near the airport for the first night. a) We'll get a decent meal and a good nights rest b) practice driving on the left hand side of the road a little bit before doing 5 days of touring is useful. I drive for a living, fatigue can be dangerous on the road.

My advice would be to pick a couple of 'must see' spots in the area and just divide the next day between them. Repeat as necessary and don't feel like you need to see it all.

My dad and I took a 3 day trip in Ireland like this & it was great. My best memories were the pubs & the grub :)

Posted by
9363 posts

Flights from Chicago on Aer Lingus always get in in the morning. I have always had a whole day of things planned for that day, so as not to waste it. The most recent time, we drove clear down to Blarney the first day, finally falling into bed at about 8:30, and were fine the next day. With only a day, though, you might want to see Bunratty Castle (right near Shannon airport), the drive up to the Cliffs of Moher and the Burren.

Posted by
12 posts

Try to rest up before you leave and during the flight. Stay up when you get to Limrick. By the time you get luggage, clear customs, etc., it'll be close to noon. The Bunratty Folk Park (quite close to Shannon) is a good look at Irish homes and life and is a nice sight for a first afternoon. The Burren is something to see. The only place I know where your neighbor would come and steal your dirt.