We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Solo Trip to Derry

Boston...
Level Contributor
58 posts
16 reviews
Save Topic
Solo Trip to Derry

After finding an amazing airfare into Dublin, I've just decided to come visit Northern Ireland. This will be my second trip to Northern Ireland, but first time to Derry and I need a little bit of advice on what to see and do!

One motivation for the trip is to better understand "The Troubles", as I am spending this semester at university doing an independent study on Northern Ireland.

Right now I am definitely going to visit the City Walls, Museum of Free Derry, and take a walking tour of the city.

I am planning on three days in Derry (a half day on arrival, and two full days). I'll be relying on public transportation when I am there.

Does anyone have any recommendations of day trips other than the Giant's Causeway (I have already been there on my previous trip). I love castles, abbey ruins, stone circles, and strolling on the beach.

After Derry I will be visiting Belfast, and after reading other postings on this forum it seems that the train to Belfast would be much more scenic than the bus. Do you need to purchase tickets in advance for the best fares, or can I purchase them once I am ready to depart?

North Coast, N...
Destination Expert
for Northern Ireland
Level Contributor
5,365 posts
87 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Solo Trip to Derry

I am hoping that our Derry DE shelly will pick this up.

No need to book train or bus tickets in advance. I always just buy at the station.

One possible option is if the weather is good to go by train to Castlerock. (If you do this as a day/half day trip you are actually doing the most scenic part of the Derry to Belfast train route so could go by bus to Belfast). Have a coffee in Crusoes

http://www.crusoescoffeeshop.co.uk/

Walk along the beach, head up through the Black Glen to Mussenden temple and Downhill demesne or keep to the main road and head out to Hezlett house and onto Downhill that way (you may feel safer as a solo traveller keeping to the main road)

nationaltrust.org.uk/downhill-demesne-and-he…

Wear properwalking shoes as the ground can be wet around Mussenden.

derryvisitor.com/Portals/4/downloads/Londond…

Edited: 04 February 2012, 18:04
Ottawa, ON
Level Contributor
2,335 posts
63 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Solo Trip to Derry

When we were there, we took a bus to Buncrana on the Inishowen Peninsula in Donegal - 35 minute journey. Interesting walk along the Lough Swilly shore line.

North Coast, N...
Destination Expert
for Northern Ireland
Level Contributor
5,365 posts
87 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Solo Trip to Derry

OTHER OPTIONS

You could also go to the stone circle near Raphoe but may need to get a taxi from Raphoe itself

://www.letterkennyguide.com/beltany.asp

www.buseireann.ie/pdf/1315391397-480.pdf

Another site with great views on a clear day is the ringfort Grianán Aileach about a 15 minute drive from Derry but I can't find information on whether or not you can get a bus to stop here (it is on the main road to Letterkenny).

saintsandstones.net/stones-griananaileach-jo…

An organised tour to Glenveagh costs £150 for up to 4 people but if you are travelling solo, that is very expensive!!

derrycitytours.com/Tours/…Default.aspx

Here is the link to local taxi drivers

www.derryvisitor.com/Taxi-Companies.T282.aspx

If you like history (pre Troubles) the UIster American Folk Park at Omagh is excellent

http://nmni.com/uafp

You can get here by public transport from Derry - information on the link above.

Hope that gives you a few ideas to start with!

Boston...
Level Contributor
58 posts
16 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Solo Trip to Derry

ponaire thank you so very very much! I want to see everything you listed - I need more time I think! Your links and details are wonderful, I truly appreciate it. Castlerock looks like a very good option for a day trip on a nice weather day.

ronw - I just googled Buncrana and the images are lovely, that is definitely a possibility.

Edited: 05 February 2012, 04:03
Derry
Destination Expert
for Derry
Level Contributor
737 posts
48 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Solo Trip to Derry

Sorry for the late reply!

Regarding day trips I can't think of anything else to add to Ponaire's excellent tips and suggestions.

I would definitely recommend a bus trip from Derry to either Moville or Buncrana. Both have lovely coastal walks and are only a short journey by bus (about 1/2 hour).

Glenveagh Castle and grounds are breath-taking but it can be awkward to visit by bus. You could bus it to Letterkenny and hitch a ride to Glenveagh if you are ok with that - there would be plenty of traffic heading out that road towards the Gweedore area.

Regarding your interest in the Troubles, I think you'll find the Museum of Free Derry/Free Derry Tours very useful. The City Tours tour is very well regarded and gives a balanced view in relation to Derry's past.

Hope this helps!

Boston...
Level Contributor
58 posts
16 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Solo Trip to Derry

Thank you Shells! That is very helpful, I appreciate everyone's great advice and cannot wait until I arrive!

Ireland
Level Contributor
19 posts
6 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Solo Trip to Derry

Dont miss out on a visit to the Museum of Free Derry or a chance to get on a tour with one of the Guides. It is no ordinary tour where you listen to a guide for an hour, on these tours you get to interact with the Guide to ask questions and get to challenge assumptions and these guys know their stuff. The tours are not limited to just the Bogside but can encompass the Walls too. For students of history and conflict resolution you wont find better,

Derry
Destination Expert
for Derry
Level Contributor
737 posts
48 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Solo Trip to Derry

Just for perspective, the above poster represents Free Derry Tours.

I thought that should be made clear as this post is not a recommendation from a service user ;)

Edited: 15 February 2012, 15:36
Ireland
Level Contributor
19 posts
6 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: Solo Trip to Derry

Curious that you should fee the need to point that out. May I correct you, I do not represent Free Derry Tours, I represent only myself. I do provide tour services on behalf of FDT as I do for Universities, schools, Academies from the US Britain Ireland and Europe, as well as for cross community groups and schools the length and breath of the country Tours for DVCB Derry city council and many other tour operators here and abroad, and I would hope that you would not claim that I represent any of those groups either Shells.

My post was to let the visitor know that as he or she is interested in the conflict here that a tour with any of the guides from the Museum could help. But feel free to differ if you choose.

10. Re: Solo Trip to Derry

-:- Message from TripAdvisor staff -:-

This topic has been closed to new posts due to inactivity. We hope you'll join the conversation by posting to an open topic or starting a new one.

To review the TripAdvisor Forums Posting Guidelines, please follow this link: http://www.tripadvisor.com/pages/forums_posting_guidelines.html

We remove posts that do not follow our posting guidelines, and we reserve the right to remove any post for any reason.

Removed on: 17 May 2013, 10:18