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.

Advice for first trip to Ireland

Yellow Springs, Ohio
Level Contributor
1,685 posts
70 reviews
Save Topic
Advice for first trip to Ireland

I know this is a very broad based question but I need to start somewhere. My wife and I have traveled many times to Scotland and are very familiar with most of the country. We are now planning our first trip to Ireland. We want to spend 4 weeks there and our first thoughts are two weeks in the southwest and then two weeks in the southeast. We would probably self-cater in one location for each period and do day trips from there. It would be in the Spring of next year.

My starting question is: Which area would be best for both sides of Ireland? What we enjoy is rural, less-crowded areas but with access to pubs and restaurants for evening meals. If it helps, we enjoy Portree on the Isle of Skye and Pitlochry down in eastern Scotland. We would need one or two bedroom/baths accdomodations if anyone has a suggestion.

Thanking all of you in advance for any suggestions you can give.

Western Ireland...
Destination Expert
for Dingle
Level Contributor
11,660 posts
123 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Advice for first trip to Ireland

Will you hire a car?What are your interests?Pitlochry always reminds me of Adare.

Yellow Springs, Ohio
Level Contributor
1,685 posts
70 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Advice for first trip to Ireland

Yes, we'll have a car. Driving on single track (or worse) roads is not a problem for us. We are both photographers and enjoy casual hiking and less crowded areas. We enjoy small villages and have no need for tourist attractions though we do like distilleries and occasional stately homes. I'm currently looking at the Kenmare area as one of our areas.

Thank you for your reply.

Ireland
Level Contributor
1 post
99 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Advice for first trip to Ireland

I would stay 7-10 days in Dingle, Co. Kerry and then 3-4 days in either Connemara or Westport.

For the South East, I would spend a few days in Dunmore East or Lismore Co. Waterford, a few days in Rosslare, Co. Wexford and a few days in Kilkenny City.

These are all nice places and a good base to travel around from.

ireland
Level Contributor
2 posts
42 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Advice for first trip to Ireland

I really think you'd love "Donegal" in the North West of Ireland. The scenery is spectacular very rural with lovely friendly people. Good pubs and restaurants, so don't limit yourself to the south.

Yellow Springs, Ohio
Level Contributor
1,685 posts
70 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Advice for first trip to Ireland

Thank you beegee and Garry. Since it's our first trip I really appreciate all advice. I'll check out Donegal.

Guernsey, United...
Level Contributor
5,199 posts
148 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Advice for first trip to Ireland

I really like the town of Kenmare, although it is popular with tourists/tour buses. However, as you'll be visiting in Spring, it shouldn't be too busy. If you want amenities nearby, but don't mind a short drive, you could consider staying on Beara Peninsula for peace and quiet, fabulous scenery, walks and great photo opportunities:

http://www.bearatourism.com/

I also Love the Burren region in north Clare: fascinating landscape, and again, opportunities for walks, horse-riding, photography:

http://www.burrenbeo.com/visitor-info

I'm only hugely amateur, but if you have time, have a look at my photo sets of Ireland on flickr:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/fainleog/sets/

:-)

McKinney, Texas
Level Contributor
3 posts
55 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Advice for first trip to Ireland

You should see a lot in 4 weeks. I was in Portree in June - we stayed at the Barriemore. Loved it. I have been to Ireland several times and usually make one place a home base and do day trips from there. Cork is my favorite city and there are lots of things to do and see, e.g. West Cork, Cobh, Kinsale, Bantry and Bandon. Killarney is an easy drive from Cork but probably want to stay in Kerry to do the Ring. From Galway you can do the Aran Islands and everything in Clare and Limerick. Limerick is off the tourist path and worth seeing but it's not touristy. Dublin is a short drive to Belfast and NI is worth seeing. Donegal and Sligo have great scenery and are rural and isolated. Actually you can't go wrong anywhere in Ireland. I love every bit. Consider taking the train on occasion. The republic has a great rail system.

Dublin
Level Contributor
3,297 posts
6 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Advice for first trip to Ireland

Scenery-wise, the south, west and north coasts have much to offer - the east coast is locally interesting. If you are looking at basing yourselves in a few rural areas for extended periods and starting in the south-west, I'd look at

a) Beara or Mizen Head Peninsulas (West Cork) - very scenic and a good base for west Cork and Kerry but away from the more touristy part of Kerry such as Dingle, Ring of Kerry and Killarney.

b) Roundstone (Galway) - a small coast village as a base for Connemara, west Mayo and the Aran Islands.

c) Ardara or Glenties west(Donegal) - a base for all the good things that Donegal has to offer.

You could do stay at these locations for 4-5 days at a time as part of a clockwise tour and maybe do one or two overnights at locations between them. Also allow for a few nights in or around both Belfast and Dublin. The in-between locations could take in places such the Burren and the Cliffs of Moher in Clare, Glendalough (south of Dublin) and the Glens of Antrim / Giants Causeway (north of Belfast).

Yellow Springs, Ohio
Level Contributor
1,685 posts
70 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: Advice for first trip to Ireland

Thank you all very much for your advice. I've made copious notes and while my wife is recuperating from a hip replacement we'll work on an itinerary.

Sarnia, you have some great pictures.

10. Re: Advice for first trip to Ireland

-:- 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: 25 August 2013, 05:15