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Ireland Tour on December. Is it a bad idea?

Manila, Philippines
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Ireland Tour on December. Is it a bad idea?

Hi again everyone! I just thought I'd get your opinion about our plan to visit Ireland this December. Basically we're planning to stay in Dublin. Visit some museums and other attractions around Dublin, North Coast, Train Tour (cliffs of moher, bunratty castle, etc), Shopping, pubs.

My fiance and I will get married this December and we want Ireland to be our honeymoon destination. We're planning to stay for a week. I've been already making plans and researching of the places we'd visit, hotel to stay, etc. And I've tried to research about the weather recently just to find out that it's not recommended to visit in December because of the weather.. Is it really that bad?

We're coming from an Asian tropical country where it's usually hot and warm. I'm wondering if we'll be able to adjust to the climate just fine. Although we've been to other countries before where there's winter and experienced cold weather (like 0 to -3 degrees celcius)...

And I'm also worried that it might snow. And by that I imagine the streets being covered in snow. Because if it does, it would be a hassle and we might not be able to walk around and visit places, etc. I'm a little confused with the snow. Some I've read that it does not snow that much. What do they mean? Like it snows for a few hours but does not cover the street white?.. But others I've read that the snow's been terrible in Ireland. So what is it really? This has gotten me confused.

Sorry if this question is dumb but I'm a little worried if we'll push through with our plan or not. But really want to see Ireland. This makes me sad :(

I truly appreciate your advice. Thanks in advance!

england
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1. Re: Ireland Tour on December. Is it a bad idea?

well, it wont be hot or warm!! but if its what you want to do I'd go for it.

No one can tell you the weather, it could be very cold and wet, just cold, just wet, or not too bad at all. The only certainty is that the days will be short, max of 8 hours daylight on a good day.

But if you are staying in Dublin city it wont matter that much, I would advise against driving in the countryside that time of year, but in the run up to Christmas the city will be lively, shopping, pubs and days out wont be affected. Go and enjoy it!!

Manila, Philippines
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2. Re: Ireland Tour on December. Is it a bad idea?

Hi fuchsiagirlEngland! Thanks for the quick response. :)

by "just cold, just wet", do you mean the ground won't be covered in snow? Been googling December Dublin weather and saw photos of everything being covered in snow. That's what I'm afraid of, that we might not get to walk around and enjoy the place if the snow's going to be everywhere.

If we'll go to places like the north coast we'll take the tour bus and for cliffs of moher, we might take the train tour. Is it a bad idea to visit these places on December? Why?

Btw, we're planning to go to Ireland around the mid month of December and stay for a week. :)

Edited: 31 July 2012, 17:20
Saginaw, Michigan
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3. Re: Ireland Tour on December. Is it a bad idea?

Check out weather in Ireland for past Decembers and other weather-related topic here:

http://www.met.ie/climate/monthly-summary.asp

The winter of 2009 into 2011 produced a lot of snow and these are likely the pictures you're talking about.

Generally, speaking snow showers are more common than heavy falls of snow in Ireland. The problem is no one can tell you which will happen on any given winter.

Also, you have to factor in very short days in December, the possibility of high winds, fog, frost and the dreaded black ice.

Maybe, base yourselves in Dublin and/or another city for the duration of your visit and take day trips.

Mid-December is a lovely time in Dublin - very Christmassy, already.

Some tourist attractions countrywide do close down over the winter.

england
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4. Re: Ireland Tour on December. Is it a bad idea?

Personally I would forget Cliffs of Moher in December, lack of daylight is the problem, if its dull, overcast or drizzly you will simply spend all day on a coach and see nothing.

Snow is unlikely in the city , even when it snows on the Wicklow hills the city is warmer, and if it did snow the city centre streets would soon be cleared.

Chicago
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5. Re: Ireland Tour on December. Is it a bad idea?

We traveled to Dublin in December. We did a day trip to Cork and even flew to Liverpool for a day on Ryan Air. We walked all around the city. It was a fabulous trip. We hail from Chicago so we were used to cold, windy weather but don't let that stop you.

Just throw on a pair of jeans, a sweater and jacket and something on your head and go for it, you won't regret it.

Cavan
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6. Re: Ireland Tour on December. Is it a bad idea?

My only concern is, to come so far to a country which offers so little during the month of December. If I were you I would go to New Zealand or Antarctica.

Saginaw, Michigan
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7. Re: Ireland Tour on December. Is it a bad idea?

Correction to my previous post:

'The winter of 2009 into 2011....'

This, of course, should read: The winter of 2009 into 2010...

Manila, Philippines
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8. Re: Ireland Tour on December. Is it a bad idea?

Hi Uasal, thanks for the informative post. Yes, high winds, fog, frost and black ice are also what I'm worried about. This might sound stupid, but is this common in Dublin city during the month or just in the countryside? Since you suggested that we base ourselves in the city, so I thought that it's less likely to happen there. But I could have understood wrong. And with the tourist attractions closing in winter, are they closed the whole winter season or do they just close like for a day or two depending on weather condition? Is it possible to know which are closed beforehand (like maybe if there's info online) so we know which places to go?

Thanks for the tip, fuchsiagirlEngland. I'll keep that in mind. We'd love to see the countryside, but if that's the case I guess we'll have to think twice about it.

Manila, Philippines
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9. Re: Ireland Tour on December. Is it a bad idea?

ChgoKid, were a lot of museums/attractions closed during that time of the year? We're coming from Asia and we'll go experience Ireland for just about a week, so we'd really like to see and experience the Irish culture as much as we can. I'm afraid the weather might stop us from doing that. Like we are considering seeing the countryside, but it might not be a good idea because of the weather. I feel like the opportunity is wasted since we'll just visit this once and we don't know when we'll be able to come back again. :(

Cavan007, I know. That's what I'm worried about that we won't be able to see and experience as much as we'd like because of the weather. :(

Saginaw, Michigan
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10. Re: Ireland Tour on December. Is it a bad idea?

@Catmare:

The reason I suggested Dublin is that there are so many other things to do that are not as weather-dependant as, say, going all the way to The Cliffs of Moher to find they are enclosed by fog.

If you did base yourselves in Dublin, you could take day trips as the weather allowed and you would not have to book in advance.

All the Dublin attractions will be open throughout the winter. The ones I referred to earlier tend to close end of September or October and not re-open till either St Patrick's Day, Easter or even the beginning of May.

Apart from a city in Ireland, you could also consider Killarney, a large town in Co Kerry (or, do a combination of both Dublin and Killarney).

Here's a Taste of their Christmas Markets:

www.christmasinkillarney.com/markets.php

Older post on Dublin in December:

tripadvisor.in/ShowTopic-g186605-i90-k388776…

And, one from the end of November 2011 which mentions some Christmas lights already switched on at that point:

tripadvisor.ie/ShowTopic-g186605-i90-k497623…