We are also trying to decide how long to stay in Dingle (1-3 days). Is there enough to do in that area to plan for a couple of nights? Or is one night in that area enough? Any suggestions for this area to see and/or do?
Yes there is enough to do for at least two days. Drive the Dingle peninsula stopping at the ruins, castles and other sights. Stop in the little villages along the way, chat with the locals, go to the Blasket Island Museum and spend some time learning of the history. Go to the pubs in the evening to enjoy the music. Drive up Connor Pass to see if you can find the man playing the harp. Look in Rick's book for the sights. Gallarus Oratory is interesting, there are beehive shape ruins, churches, etc. There is so much to stop and see along the drive. Take a picnic lunch or stop in at one of the pubs and strike up a conversation with a local. Sit at the bar. You will be included in their conversation.
One night is fine if you don't enjoy learning about the history and seeing the ruins. If you arrived in the afternoon and toured the town, then spend the entire day out along the Peninsula you could do two nights.
Excellent! Thanks for the advice!
Here are the things we did. The first day we rented bikes and rode around the Dingle Peninsula. It was about 30 miles and took most of the day. We stopped and spend some time at the Blasket Centre and also made numerous stops to check out other things including Glorius Oratory. (We actually didn't start until 12:30, becuase it was the day we arrived. We could have used a little more time) Day 2 We took a tour with Mr. Collins, we took a boat out to see Fungi the dolphin and take a harbor tour, we drove around to some of the other sites including Mindard's Castle. Add in some shopping in town, tea and scones, lots of trad in the evening, and just relaxing and it was a great 2 days. (which was all we had) Dingle is alot about just soaking up the atmosphere and relaxing. The people are friendly and the scenery some of the best in Ireland.
We spent three nights in Dingle on our first visit and loved it so much we spent five nights the next time. In addition to the suggestions already posted, I would suggest taking a ferry to Great Blasket Island. It is exceptionally beautiful and a wonderful place to go hiking and exploring by yourself. If you like to hike, you will not be disappointed. It's hilly though, so you have to be in decent shape to get the most out of it. Be sure to visit the museum first and read some of the books written by the islanders before you go. It will make your visit more meaningful. The ruins of the houses that were abandoned in 1953 are still there and it's interesting to see them and imagine what life was like for the islanders. We went to the island on both trips and explored different sides of the island on each trip.
Another thing we did from Dingle is drive over to Killarney National Park. It's a long day, but a nice place to visit if you get decent weather.
I could spend a week in Dingle for the music.
You should have no problem filling 3 days in Dingle!
The others have provided lots of information, but you might get some ideas by reading Rick's Ireland Guidebook. I'd suggest touring during the day (Blasket Island Interpretive Centre, Gallarus Oratory, Tim Collins tours) as well as hiking and exploring the local area. In the evenings, the Pubs and the music are incredible. Depending on which Hotel you choose, you should be able to walk around town to do some "pub crawling".
It's a fantastic place and one of my favourites!