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Itinerary Suggestions

Kansas City...
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Itinerary Suggestions

My husband and I are spending 11 days in Ireland in late October/early November of this year (our first big trip as a married couple!). Our itinerary looks like this:

Day 1: Arrive early from US. Sightsee in Dublin. Stay in Dublin 3 nights.

Day 3: Get rental car and drive north (Newgrange? Boyne Valley?)

Day 4: Drive from Dublin to Kilkenny, stay Kilkenny 1 night.

Day 5: Drive from Kilkenny to Cork, stay in Cork 2 nights.

Day 7: Drive to Killarney, stay in Killarney 2 nights.

Day 9: Drive to Galway, stay in Galway 1 night.

Day 10: Drive to Ennis, stay in Ennis 2 nights.

Day 12: Flight out Shannon early

My biggest question is what to do for the later half of the trip, specifically on the drive from Killarney to Galway. Should we try to do the Cliffs on that drive or wait until we get settled at Ennis? I would obviously love input on any other part of our trip as well, especially for stuff we should definitely make time for and what we can pass up on. We know a handful of things we for sure want to see, but beyond that are very open to suggestion. Thank you in advance for all your help!

1. Re: Itinerary Suggestions

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Dublin
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2. Re: Itinerary Suggestions

"We know a handful of things we for sure want to see ....."

Perhaps you might let us know what these are, and then we can start making further suggestions - no point in suggesting things that you might already have in your plans.

Boise, Idaho
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3. Re: Itinerary Suggestions

Having just visited Galway and Ennis I would suggest two nights Galway and one night in Ennis. We had a leisurely day driving from Galway to Ennis while stopping at Dungaire castle, the Poulnabrone Dolmen in The Burren and the Cliffs of Moher and still had a nice afternoon in Ennis. The Old Ground Hotel n Ennis is well located and had a great pub. Galway is a fun, young town with lots of shopping or some great sites nearby.

Kansas City...
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4. Re: Itinerary Suggestions

Dublin - Trinity College, Iveagh Gardens, Guinness Storehouse, Kilmainham Gaol, Christ Church Cathedral

Kilkenny - Kilkenny Castle, Smithwick's

Cork - Blarney Castle, English Market

Killarney - Killarney National Park, Ring of Kerry

Galway - Eyre Square

Ennis - The Burren, Cliffs of Moher

Kansas City...
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5. Re: Itinerary Suggestions

Thanks, Heather! I really appreciate your feedback. We had originally planned on two nights in Galway, but the dear hubs is not a huge fan of busy nightlife (he told me Temple Bar would be enough for him). I just couldn't give up going to Galway on this trip, though - looks like my kind of place :).

Dublin
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6. Re: Itinerary Suggestions

I would suggest for Dublin, that you do a HOHO tour (€18), which will take you around the main sights in Dublin. It is a good way to get an overview of and some information on the city. The ticket is valid for two consecutive days, and also for a walking tour (normally €10) at 11AM on the second day is included - it is a very interesting tour - walkingtours.ie/scheduled-tours/… . Just make sure you ask the driver, the first time you board the HOHO, for the walking tour voucher. Also, you should find the HOHO tour more interesting, if you get on the buses with the live commentary, rather than the multilingual commentary buses. Depending on where you are staying in Dublin city, it might be worth your while to get the Airlink747 express bus from the airport (€6 one way, €10 return), and buy a combo ticket (€24) which includes the Airlink747 to and from the airport and the HOHO bus tour -

https:/…airlinkComboRtn.aspx

Here is a route that I would suggest from Kilkenny to Cork, parts of which are quite scenic. You should consider a stop in Cahir and visit Cahir Castle, which will be in complete contrast to Kilkenny Castle, just to see two different styles of castles - http://goo.gl/maps/yw0kK

When you are doing the Ring of Kerry, I would suggest that you side track to Valentia Island, and then rather than back track to the ROK, take the Skellig Ring route on to Watervile - you will be re-joining the ROK just before Waterville. I have found this drive more scenic than the section of the ROK that you would be missing - http://goo.gl/maps/zscqY

As regards the Cliffs of Moher, in my view it would make sense to do it on your journey either to or from Galway, rather than doing a special trip on one of your two days in Ennis.However, at that time of the year, you might not get to see the cliffs, due to the prevailing weather conditions, so keep that in mind. If you do manage to get to the cliffs, the route from there to/from Galway, particularly if the weather is good, that I suggest would be this - http://goo.gl/maps/lt35j

As regards Galway, you might be underwhelemed by Eyre Square, it really is quite small and in my opinion, nothing spectacular about it. However, Galway city is very nice to stroll around, I have always enjoyed the atmosphere. I would still consider a second night for the Galway area, rather than two nights in Ennis. Stay the one night in Galway city and then head out for one night to Clifden ( I know it means more driving), through Connemara, via Spiddal, Roundstone, Ballyconneely, and then when returning from Clifden to Galway, take the direct route via the N59 - http://goo.gl/maps/nH9ls .

Finally, I think you should consider buying a Heritage Card, which for €21 will give you access to all OPW sites, as you have some of them on you list - Newgrange, Kilmainham Gaol, Kilkenny Castle, and if you visit Cahir Castle, Muckross House and/or Ross castle in Killarney, then the aggregate cost of all the individual entrance fees will exceed the cost of the Heritage Card. So, if you think that you are going to be visiting OPW sites, where the total entrance fees will exceed €21, then buy the Heritgae Card at the first site that you visit ( most likely Kilmainham Gaol or some other OPW site in Dublin) - http://www.heritageireland.ie/en/

Kansas City...
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7. Re: Itinerary Suggestions

Oh, Fenladublin - thank you thank you!! We'd thought about doing the hop on, hop off in Dublin (as well as getting a Heritage Card) but weren't sure if it would be worthwhile. Also, I'd plan on using the Airlink to get from airport to hotel and now I will for sure.

As regards to Galway, is there anything in particular in that area you'd suggest as a "must see"?

Unfortunately, we're locked in to one night in Galway and two in Ennis (advanced purchase booking), so we'll have to make that work. Any suggestions for while we're in the Ennis area?

Thank you again!

Dublin
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8. Re: Itinerary Suggestions

There is nothing that I can say is a 'must see' in Galway city, and anyway I'm always slow to say that one must see this or that, as my 'must see' could be someone else's nightmare. For me, I just enjoy strolling around the city and absorbing the atmosphere - you could include a walk along the promenade in Salthill, although it might be very bracing at that time of the year.

Killarney to Galway will take you three hours, all going well. So if you leave Killarney at 9.00AM, then it will be at least noon before you arrive in Galway, and with it becoming dark at that time of the year by 4.30 - 5.00PM, you will have only about 4.5 hours daylight for the city.

As you only have one night in Galway, my suggestion for Clifden will not work, but if you would like to see a small bit of Connemara, then you could do this relatively short trip before you leave Galway for Ennis - http://goo.gl/maps/LjVSX

On you way to Ennis, you could take the route I gave you for the Cliffs of Moher to Galway. It's a nice journey, and if the day is clear, you would then get to see the Cliffs. You could also call in to see the Ailwee caves, which are more or less on that route, outside Ballyvaughan. If you want a break for some food, do visit An Fear Gorta in Ballyvaughan - Steven Spielberg has eaten there twice. However, if time is against you, you could go directly from Galway to Ennis

Unfortunately, I'm not familiar enough with Ennis to be able to advise you what you should see there, apart from Bunratty Castle, which is a 20/30 minute drive away, on the road to Limerick - http://goo.gl/maps/gLcbA

9. Re: Itinerary Suggestions

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Removed on: 09 August 2015, 05:17