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.

1 week in April-- Dublin or no Dublin?

New York, NY
Level Contributor
11 posts
33 reviews
Save Topic
1 week in April-- Dublin or no Dublin?

My husband and I are seriously thinking about a week in Ireland in April. The way my vacation lines up it would be from Easter weekend through the following weekend. We were going to fly into Dublin, then immediately head down the coast to Wexford, then Cork, then Kenmare for 2 days (see the Ring of Kerry and Baera), then up to Kilkenny, then 2 nights in Dublin.

Here're the questions:

1. Is this too ambitious, especially since we really like to get off the beaten track and experience non-touristy things.

2. We were told by a friend to minimize time in Dublin and spend our days on the west coast, perhaps even go up to Galway. We've been to a lot of big cities in Europe and live in NYC but haven't been to Ireland previously. Is this good advice?

3. With only a week and the Easter weekend to contend with, what are the must-sees (and will we run into problems with everything being closed)?

Thanks...

Dublin, Ireland
Level Contributor
540 posts
Save Reply
1. Re: 1 week in April-- Dublin or no Dublin?

Dante,

Your itinerary, like many people who spend a week in Ireland, is way too ambitious. You will spend almost your entire time in a car driving and never get to see any sights. While distances in Ireland are small driving times are long as the roads are not anything like you are used to in the US. It can easily take 5 hours of straight driving to get from Dublin city to Cork city. Dublin airport to Wexford is about 2.5 hours driving, assuming no traffic.

Recall that you will have just alighted from an overnight international flight, will be jet lagged, tired and unfamiliar with the roads and rental car you have. I would say you should spend the first night in Dublin (if even at an airport hotel) to rest up and then collect your car on day 2 and begin driving when fresh.

Easter week is when schools are closed in Ireland so you will miss some traffic, though people may be heading away on holiday, so book accommodation in advance. Also, pubs and all off-licenses (liqor stores) are closed on Good Friday.

Do a search on the forum for posts by people asking advice about a week in Ireland and see what replies they get. There's a lot of good advice out there!

Ireland
Level Contributor
2,803 posts
54 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: 1 week in April-- Dublin or no Dublin?

In answer to your questions.

1. Yes, it is too ambitious.

2. Definately visit Galway at least and use it as a starting location for the rest of your visit. Slightly touristy in the city though but there are lots of places that you and your rental car can take you if you have the right advice. You are in the right for place that advice.

3. Not much will be closed, unlike the day and night differences in the north of ireland you will find most things in the Republic like shops and bars stay open later. Some big supermarkets are 24hours and only close on Christmas day and early New Years eve. It may be Easter here but its nothing like the experience on Easter that you have in the US. Here, its more about simply buying some chocolate eggs and growing fat eating them at home. The odd event happens but nothing like the US.

Do a search on Itinerary on the forum. You will be pleasantly suprised with the amount of hits this question gets. Stick to the West and the South West is my opinion.

County Clare...
Destination Expert
for County Clare, Aran Islands, Bunratty, The Burren
Level Contributor
8,408 posts
34 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: 1 week in April-- Dublin or no Dublin?

You also have the option of using Shannon (county Clare) for one or both parts of your transatlantic journey:

http://www.shannonairport.com/plan-book/

Maryland
Destination Expert
for Las Vegas, Washington DC, County Donegal, Western Ireland
Level Contributor
54,073 posts
47 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: 1 week in April-- Dublin or no Dublin?

"It may be Easter here but its nothing like the experience on Easter that you have in the US. Here, its more about simply buying some chocolate eggs and growing fat eating them at home. The odd event happens but nothing like the US."

Wandering off-topic, but what do you think happens on Easter in the US? Sounds like it's the same: kids get candy, adults "help" eat it, a family dinner, go to Mass...that's about it for most that I know. What have I been missing? :)

Ireland
Level Contributor
2,803 posts
54 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: 1 week in April-- Dublin or no Dublin?

It has to do mostly with commericialism. In the US more emphasis is built up around the holidays and there are more events for kids at Easter & Halloween. Its not as big a "deal" here with little more to do than gorge yourself in front of the TV on easter Sunday morning.

There are events in communities but mostly within schools and kids clubs in Ireland. In the US a massive emphasis is made to gets kids out to do Egg hunts and other party games. Its mainly down to the climate as well. Its hard to do anything here because of the weather.

BTW, I have lived in the US in a small community.

County Clare...
Destination Expert
for County Clare, Aran Islands, Bunratty, The Burren
Level Contributor
8,408 posts
34 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: 1 week in April-- Dublin or no Dublin?

Erm, Bertie - we have these in county Clare.

:)

www.aillweecave.ie/aillwee_cave_events.htm

shannonheritage.com/SpecialEvents/…

There are still some traditions, like the Easter sunday outdoor mass/blessing etc - that are followed by quite a few.

Ireland
Level Contributor
2,803 posts
54 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: 1 week in April-- Dublin or no Dublin?

I never said Ireland does not have these events. You may have noticed that I even said we do but I also said but you may have missed.

"In the US more emphasis is built up around the holidays and there are more events for kids at Easter & Halloween."

I used the word "more" twice, more emphasis and more events.

Of course Ireland has these events.

County Clare...
Destination Expert
for County Clare, Aran Islands, Bunratty, The Burren
Level Contributor
8,408 posts
34 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: 1 week in April-- Dublin or no Dublin?

Bertie ...I just thought you'd enjoy the picture of the purple bunny in Craggaunowen!

:0(

Dublin, Ireland
Level Contributor
72 posts
37 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: 1 week in April-- Dublin or no Dublin?

ferdia35 might have the right idea. Fly into shannon (generally the same price as Dublin) and head up along the west coast to take in Galway and Sligo. Then cross over to Dublin and spend a couple of nights there and fly out of Dublin airport. Alternatively you could do it in reverse, fly into Dublin and take in Cork (especially West Cork) and Kerry and then fly out of Shannon.

ireland
Level Contributor
6,266 posts
10 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: 1 week in April-- Dublin or no Dublin?

my advice?

fly into Shannon - go to Galway - spend a few days there (its not at all touristy - it has a couple of "aran sweater" shops and dii-dii shops, but not touristy compared to say Westport when every second shop is a "ireland" shop.

Head down to Cork then for a couple of days.

As it is you are way to ambitious.