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Itinerary help/question

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Itinerary help/question

I've found TA to be very helpful in the past, and I'm sure this will be no different. My wife and I are visiting Ireland in late August, primarily for the Penn State-UCF college football game but also to see as much of the country as possible. We're planning to be there for 9 nights and to use a mix of public transportation and car rental. Please let me know if this is too ambitious or seems reasonable, and if you have any criticisms or suggestions. Thanks.

Aug 22: arrive Dublin, overnight Dublin

Aug 23: train to Cork, see Cobh/Kinsale, o/n Cork or Kinsale

Aug 24: rent car, drive to Blarney Castle, then to Kenmare, o/n Kenmare

Aug 25: Ring of Kerry, o/n Kenmare

Aug 26: Dingle Peninsula, o/n Dingle

Aug 27: drive to Cliffs of Moher, possibly stopping in Adare and/or Bunratty, o/n Galway

Aug 28: train to Dublin, possibly stopping in Athlone, o/n Dublin

Aug 29: o/n Dublin

Aug 30: game day, o/n Dublin

Aug 31: fly home

We'll of course see the sights in Dublin and are considering side trips to Glendalough, Newgrange, Bray, etc., but for the purpose of this post I'm most concerned with three things.

1. Is this itinerary doable, or too crowded for the timeframe?

2. Renting a car in Cork/Kinsale -- would we have to go to the airport? And is it reasonable to pick up a car there, and then drop it off in Galway City?

3. The Cork/Cobh/Kinsale/Blarney portion of the trip -- are we dedicating too much time? Could this be done in one overnight in the area, leaving us more time on one of the peninsulas or near Galway? Is it possible to, say, take an early train to Cork, hop on a late-morning tour of the Blarney Castle, see one of the exhibits in Cobh, and enjoy a nice meal in Kinsale, all in the same day?

Thanks again.

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Cork, Ireland
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1. Re: Itinerary help/question

My thoughts below prefixed by @@@@

Aug 22: arrive Dublin, overnight Dublin

@@@@ Fine

Aug 23: train to Cork, see Cobh/Kinsale, o/n Cork or Kinsale

Train to Cork 2.5 hours. Then from the same Cork train station you can go direct to Cobh (25 minutes), however you will have to bring your bags with you as there is no bag storage at the station. It is not feasible to do kinsale on this day as it is a 50 minute journey by bus from Cork bus station.

Aug 24: rent car, drive to Blarney Castle, then to Kenmare, o/n Kenmare

@@@@ Most of the car rental companies are based at the airport. However, I do believe that Hertz have a car rental depot also in Cork city centre. What you could do on this day is take the bus from Cork to Blarney in the morning, (25 minutes), then back to cork city. Bus to Airport, rent your car, and continue on to Kinsale which is about 15 miles from the airport. Then from there, drive to Kenmare. My only feeling about this, is that it will be a busy day for you and if it were me, I'd skip either Blarney or Kinsale on this day.

Aug 25: Ring of Kerry, o/n Kenmare

@@@@ Doable. You could start in Killarney and end in Kenmare and do the full ring which can take up to 8 hours to complete, depending on lots of things.

Aug 26: Dingle Peninsula, o/n Dingle

@@@@ Doable. If you are not feeling like doing the full Pen after the ROK, then do the Slea Head drive near Dingle which is a subset of the whole peninsula and a beautiful drive.

Aug 27: drive to Cliffs of Moher, possibly stopping in Adare and/or Bunratty, o/n Galway

@@@@ Doable, but a busy day

Aug 28: train to Dublin, possibly stopping in Athlone, o/n Dublin

@@@@ No, I wouldn't stop in Athlone on the trip. It's just not worth it for the short amount of time that you will spend there.

Aug 29: o/n Dublin

@@@@ Fine

Aug 30: game day, o/n Dublin

@@@@ YEAH !

1. Is this itinerary doable, or too crowded for the timeframe?

@@@@ It seems fine, except for some points I made above.

2. Renting a car in Cork/Kinsale -- would we have to go to the airport? And is it reasonable to pick up a car there, and then drop it off in Galway City?

@@@@ As far as I know you will have to drop the car off at Galway Airport, but that remains to be seen. There should be no trouble doing that however. Worst case scenario is to drop car off at Shannon and then get bus from there to Galway. There is a bus service from Shannon airport to Galway

3. The Cork/Cobh/Kinsale/Blarney portion of the trip -- are we dedicating too much time? Could this be done in one overnight in the area, leaving us more time on one of the peninsulas or near Galway? Is it possible to, say, take an early train to Cork, hop on a late-morning tour of the Blarney Castle, see one of the exhibits in Cobh, and enjoy a nice meal in Kinsale, all in the same day?

@@@@ One night is not enough for cork,cobh,blarney, Kinsale. As said previously, re think this and either drop one or two locations from your itinerary or else spend a night in Kinsale also.

Enjoy the planning, come back with any further questions.

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2. Re: Itinerary help/question

Bryno has given excellent information (as always). One thing I would like to point out is that the only car rental agency that has an office in Galway City is Budget. They are right on Eyre square (so very convenient to the train station). On our two trips (so far) we have used that city center office, once for picking up the rental and once for dropping the rental off after we were done with it. We will be using them again on our next trip as well.

If you do not want to use Budget, for whatever reason, you will likely need to drop off at Galway airport (but not sure which agencies are there) or at Shannon airport and take the bus.

Cork, Ireland
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3. Re: Itinerary help/question

Thanks akandal for info on Budget pick up in Eyre Square.

County Cork, Ireland
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4. Re: Itinerary help/question

I would rent the car when leaving Dublin (take bus to the airport) and return it to the same place. Will be much easier with bags etc than taking the train since you're renting anyway. The train or bus is fine if you're not renting a car. Just a thought..... Enjoy!

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5. Re: Itinerary help/question

Thanks, everyone, for your suggestions. I think I'll be able to adjust our itinerary to see everything we'd like to, or almost everything.

Is there a way to watch American sports, specifically college football, on TV in Dublin? Saw some referencesto the Woolshed in other posts. Is that still the best option?

6. Re: Itinerary help/question

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