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4.5 days - What to do, where to go?!!

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Saint Paul...
posts: 6
reviews: 1
4.5 days - What to do, where to go?!!

My husband and I will be taking a trip in May and starting in London then flying from London to Ireland. We will arrive in Ireland on the morning of 17th May and will hire a car. Our return flight is out of Dublin on the morning of the 22nd, so we'll have about 4.5 days. We know it's not nearly enough time, but we are not taking our children on this trip so 11 days of sitters is all we can manage at this time ;)

We know our last full day (21st May) will need to be in Dublin. We were thinking of flying RyanAir from London into Cork and hiring a car there. Then, perhaps a half circle from Cork, up and around the West Coast and then across to Dublin and retuning the car in Dublin City centre as soon as we arrive. But, we're open to flying in somewhere else if it makes more sense.

We like the idea of staying at B&Bs instead of hotels for the most part.

Any suggestions?

Cork, Ireland
Destination Expert
for Ireland
posts: 12,487
reviews: 241
1. Re: 4.5 days - What to do, where to go?!!

If you fly into cork you will have to really concentrate on the southwestern half of the country - and nothing wrong with that as it is absolutely beautiful there. This is because 4.5 days is quiet short as you said.

If you fly into dublin you could do a quick scoot over west to County Clare and Galway and then back to dublin. Both counties are also very beautiful. Alternatively when in Dublin you could just stay around dublin for two days and then tour County wicklow for 2 also.

If you fly into Shannon, you can travel north towards Clare and Galway (as above) or Clare and then head south towards County Kerry. You will not be disappointed whichever you choose,.

The important decision to make now is where you fly into. I of course being biased suggest you fly into Cork airport - a lovely small (and New airport) with no congestion issues and with about 6 car rental companies to choose from. You will be in West Cork 2 hours after picking up your car as the airport is on the road to the West.

I then suggest that you drive stunning West Cork staying on one of three peninsulas there (Mizen Head, Sheeps Head or the largest of the Three - Beara Peninsula) for 2days/nights, then drive on to Killarney for the same amount of time. From there you can spend 2 days exploring beautiful county Kerry. 2 days hardly enough of course, but you will see plenty and probably want to come back for more.

You would then use your half day to drive back to dublin, a very pleasant journey of about 5 hours from Killarney. The majority of this journey is on the fantastic M8 motorway which is a joy to drive on in terms of comfort and safety.

My understanding is that there is no extra charge for picking your car up at one airport and dropping off at another. (I am open to correction on this, but I have not heard of it)

If you are interested in the Cork/Kerry itinerary, let me know and I can expand on it.

Edited: 7:24 pm, February 20, 2011
Saint Paul...
posts: 6
reviews: 1
2. Re: 4.5 days - What to do, where to go?!!

Bryno, thank you! Input like yours is exactly what I'm looking for!

We are certainly open to a Cork/Kerry itinerary. I really do think I'd prefer to fly into Cork. The southwest region seems lovely, and I'm sure it would be great. If you could give suggestions on concentrating our stay to those areas, with the last full day in Dublin, that would be fabulous.

Alternately, if we flew to Cork, would it be reasonable to spend a day or so in the SW (1st day and 1 night) and then up to the West and spend 2 days in Co Galway (Aran Islands, Connemara...) before heading to Dublin?

I'm just so unsure of what is best to see in such a short amount of time. Next time we'll stay much longer (and bring the kiddlets!).

Loughrea, Ireland
Destination Expert
for Loughrea, Southport, Clifden
posts: 14,593
reviews: 33
3. Re: 4.5 days - What to do, where to go?!!

You would not see much of the South West in a day and night so if you are considering Clare and Galway you might be better to fly into Shannon and concentrate on these area's north of the Shannon. I know the temptation is to try and fit everything in but with your limited time concentrating on one area would let you get the feel rather than the sight of the place.

As a road trip then 17-18th Cork and south west corner round Beara to Kenmare (possible base) or Killarney (don't try to fit the ring). 19th Dingle for Slea Head and Connor Pass with an overnight in Adare. 20th Clare coast and Burren up to Galway for the night. 21st early start across to Dublin (2 1/2 hours) naturally you can play with this route but remember you will be averaging 35-40 mph plus stops.

4. Re: 4.5 days - What to do, where to go?!!

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