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Best of Ireland Tour - questions

We are so excited to go on our first Rick Steves' Tour to Ireland. We are fortunate to be on the same tour as cousins Mary Lou and Dixon who have enjoyed many, many of RS Tours. Cannot wait for our tour to start July 17.

Questions:
What was your favorite thing to do in Dublin that was not covered on the tour?
What was your favorite things to do in Belfast that was not covered on the tour?
What about the other towns on the tour?

Would you recommend this tour to others? Why or why not?

Favorite restaurant? Pub?

Thanks! Denise and Ron Mcclendon

Posted by
65 posts

Another vote for the Chester Beatty Library. Very memorable.

Posted by
8805 posts

Dublin:
Walking in Phoenix Park.
Favorite pub: Peggy Kelly’s pub

Belfast:
Seafood Chowder at Mournes by Kelly Cellars pub.
Favorite pub: The Spaniard

Posted by
186 posts

In Dublin we enjoyed the Hairy Lemon pub, where I made a dinner reservation. We did a Secret Food Tour which we all enjoyed. The Guinness tour, a whisky tour, a dinner show with traditional music and dancing. Lots to see and enjoy just walking around.

Posted by
6613 posts

I was in Dublin for five days before the tour. I think my favorite sight not on the tour was the National Archeological Museum. Other candidates would be the Chester Beatty Library, the state rooms at Dublin Castle, St. Patrick's and Christ Church Cathedrals, and the General Post Office. The Mary Gibbons tour to Newgrange was another highlight. Unfortunately I missed the student-led tour of Trinity College, partly because I expected to get something similar from the RS tour. But the RS tour focused on the Book of Kells and the old library, not the rest of the college.

In Belfast I'd say the Ulster Museum. Didn't have enough time to do much more there. The exhibit inside City Hall was interesting. I also appreciated the old church in Kinsale, near the center but not included on the tour. And I like boat rides, so those in Kinsale and Dingle were enjoyable.

I'd recommend the tour highly -- well organized, good amount of free time, absence of shopping stops, excellent guides, good hotels, plenty of room on the bus, interesting and well-informed fellow travelers. I haven't done a lot of organized tours but RS does a better job than anyone else I've tried. But if you prefer independent travel, even the best tour may not work for you.

Posted by
3931 posts

If you like fish’n chips, try one of Leo Burdocks take away stands in Dublin. Best ones we had.

Posted by
5 posts

Thank you to all. Very helpful suggestions. Our tour can't get here quick enough!!

Posted by
3 posts

Dingle--definitely hit the Courthouse Pub. Fabulous music. If you're in Dingle on a Wednesday, hit the concert at the old church.

Posted by
1 posts

We arrived in Dublin 2-1/2 days prior to starting the tour and stayed at Cassidy's Hotel. Walked about 2 miles to the National Botanic Gardens - Glasnevin and it was fantastic! Very large park-like setting with a wide variety of gardens to enjoy, and the glass conservatories were spectacular. If you have time and love gardens, then this is the place. The other park we really enjoyed was St. Stephen's Green.

Posted by
2474 posts

Merrion Square park has a very cool memorial to Oscar Wilde, including a colorful sculpture of him. It’s not painted, but rather, made out of various gemstones.

Posted by
740 posts

One thing I regret not doing in Belfast was taking a Black Cab tour into the neighborhoods. I think it would have been fascinating.