Hi all The wife and I are planning a Southern Ireland/London vacation in Oct 2013. Looking for some guidance and opinions on a few questions.
Oct 4th - Depart US at night - direct overnight to Dublin
Oct 5th - Arrive DUB 10-11am. Aircoach or taxi to city center. Stay in modest B&B or hotel (TBD) in town, drop off luggage or early check in. Most likely do HOHO bus to get our bearings the first day and adjust to time difference.
Oct 6th - 7th - All Dublin both days, HOHO bus 2nd day to see remaining attractions. Temple Bar for shopping and maybe a pub at night for drinks/music, etc...
Q1 - Is 2.5 days in Dublin enough to see the major attractions and get a sense of local life?
Q2 - It appears that most of the attractions are located on the green HOHO busses - what's missing that I need to pick up?
Oct 8th - Aircoach or taxi to airport in morning. Pick up car. Drive an hour to Glendalough for (11am-12:30pm), then off to Kilkenny for the Night. I want to visit Kilkenny Castle and walk around the city a bit for the remainder of the day. Staying the night at Butlers House.
Q3 - What's with the tolls I keep reading about? I was not planning on having internet access on the trip. How does this affect me if I can't go online and pay a toll?
Q4 - Is the drive to Glendalough worth the 3-4 hours or so it will take to get there and see the monastery? Would my time be better served going straight to Kilkenny and doing a walking tour or some other attraction?
Oct 9th - Leave Kilkenny for Rock of Cashel, and potentially another stop at Cahir castle en route to Killarney. Planning on staying in Killarney for 5 nights. - Potentially booking Park Place Apartments (self catering). Trying to get a little bit of a home away from home sense and not hotel hop too much around the southwest.
Q5 - Is there a standard for what's included and not in "self catering"? I don't know of an equivelant here in the US. Cleaning/turn down service/most toiletries I would not expect to be included. However, I read a review on another place how someone ran out of toilet paper and had to go get their own. Are these types of things supposed to be included?
Oct 10th - 13th - ROK or Dingle Sleigh or Beara peninsula drive one day; Killarney Nat Park/Muckross house/Ross Castle one day; Dingle Town 1 day; One day flex/relaxing around town. Basically we're going to have a few pre-planned out days and just choose which we want to do based on weather and our whims of the day.
Oct 14th - Leave Killarney to Blarney Castle, and to Cork, where we spend the rest of the day/night before departing for London via ORK airport. Wanted to visit the old market, or maybe Queenstown/Cobh.
Q6 - Does the market die down after lunchtime? Is it better to visit another attraction if we arrive later in the day (1-2ish)?
Q7 - How close is the airport to the city/attractions? If we get an early flight is it better to travel in the morning to the airport, or stay closer that night?
Q8 - What is traffic like from Killarney to Cork airport in the morning? How long would that take? If we decide to just stay another night in Killarney rather than hotel hop, would that be a mistake?
Oct 15th - 19th - London and then direct flight back to US
Like I said above, looking for some comments and answers to my questions. Any critique of the itinerary is welcome as well...