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Itinerary

Birmingham...
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Itinerary

Hi all,

My fiance and I are getting married in April, and we are planning a celebratory trip to Ireland in August when we both have more time off. Neither of us have ever been, and our bucket list (we actually made one) is so long that this may be the only time we go for the next 20 years or so lol. We haven't gotten to the point of hotels or anything, but we were wondering how this itinerary would look?

Thurs morning: Land in Dublin, check-in, Dublin in the afternoon

Fri: Dublin

Sat: Newgrange (morning), Malahide/Howth (afternoon) - spend night in Dublin

Sun: Kilkenny, Cashel - spend night in Kilkenny

Mon: Wexford/Tintern Abbey - spend night in Waterford

Tues: Waterford factory (morning), Lismore castle (afternoon) - spend night in Cork

Wed: Blarney Castle (morning), Kilarney Muckross area (afternoon) - spend night in Kilarney

Thurs: Day trip to Dingle/Dingle peninsula - spend night in Kilarney

Fri: Cliffs of Moher - spend night in Galway

Sat: Galway

Sun: Back to Dublin, spend night near Dublin airport

Mon: Back to US

Too ambitious? We also aren't sure about the Cliffs of Moher & Galway. Neither of us can really see a reason to go to those places other than the fact that they seem to be on every tour itinerary out there. If we took Galway off we could spend another night in Cork (not sure what there is to see in Cork) and another night in Kilarney (Ring of Kerry). We both like sightseeing/history and don't care about nightlife. We are early birds (like 5:30 am early) and plan on driving early to be at most of these places soon after they open. That said, we both tend to push ourselves to cram as much as possible in a very small amount of time - so any thoughts are appreciated!

Thanks, Sarah from Alabama

england
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1. Re: Itinerary

Thursday -

makes no sense to drive down to Dingle, then backtrack to Killarney just to go out again the next day to Galway, you will do the same bit of road three times, drive to Dingle via Killorglin and Inch, stay the night, then next day on to Galway via the Connor Pass.

Dublin, Ireland
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for Sligo, Dublin
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2. Re: Itinerary

Congratulations on your upcoming wedding, you just be up to your eyes with all the preparations!

My advice would be not to overpack your itinerary....for a number of reasons. The first one being that it is your honeymoon.......take the time to enjoy this special holiday. You both may well be early birds, but in general, Ireland is not! You can be on the road at 5.30 am if you like but very few hotels or B&B's will be serving breakfast that early. Most visitors enjoy Irish breakfasts and find that they sustain them well for the days touring...they are also an opportunity to socialise with your hosts if in a B&B or with other travellers. The other thing is that most pubs with music etc are really only getting going after 9pm, so if you're heading off to bed early in anticipation of an early start the next morning you will miss out on this. I know you say you are not into nightlife, but this is not the sort of nightlife that you might expect!

I will leave others to comment on your actual day to day itinerary. Once again, congratulations and enjoy this very special time.

Arlington, Virginia
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3. Re: Itinerary

Just a few thoughts from someone who's been to Ireland a couple times and, like you, enjoys sightseeing and history and doesn't care a bit for nightlife. Also, I don't believe in "must sees" and think you should choose your destinations based on what interests you--not on what"s on "every tour itinerary out there".. We skipped the Cliffs of Moher, even though we were right there and we drove through Galway on our way someplace else and didn't stop. Those places were not of interest to us.

Here's another itinerary you might want to consider that incorporates some of the things you have already listed and some things I think you'd enjoy (Glendalough, Ring of Beara, Ring of Kerry).

Thurs: Arrive, check in, tour Dublin

Fri: Tour Dublin

Sat: Pick up rental car, drive to Newgrange and Malahide/Howth. Overnight Malahide or Howth. (We've stayed in Malahide on both our trips and enjoyed it very much.)

Sun: Day trip to Glendalough. Continue on to Kilkenny for night

Monday: Visit Cashel, Kilkenny and Cahir, if time permits. Overnight Kilkenny.

Tues: Wexford/Tintern Abbey - spend night in Waterford

Wed: Waterford factory (morning), Lismore castle (afternoon) - spend night in Cork

Thurs. Blarney Castle (morning), Killarney Muckross area (afternoon) - spend night in Killarney (or Kenmare, which we really enjoyed)

Fri: Day trip driving the Ring of Beara (spectacular scenery!) Perhaps take cable car to Dursey Island. Overnight Kenmare

Sat and Sun: Drive Ring of Kerry over two days with an overnight near Valentia Island. (We stayed in Ballinskelligs). See ring forts in Sneem and Cahirciveen, Valentia Island, Derrynane NP, etc. You might even get in a trip to Skellig Michael. Drive back to Malahide/Howth (near the airport) on Sunday evening.

Mon: Return to U.S.

Edited: 10:50 am, January 18, 2013
Saginaw, Michigan
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for Western Ireland
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4. Re: Itinerary

These might help with the history and heritage aspect of your trip:

http://www.heritageireland.ie/en/

If your visit coincides with the dates of Heritage Week (17th - 25th August), this will help:

http://www.heritageweek.ie

On the other hand, if your visit is at the beginning of August, be aware that Monday 5th is a bank holiday - the busiest one of the year.

The whole weekend from Friday 2nd will be particularly busy on the roads and likely a bit more expensive in terms of accommodation.

Huntsville, Alabama
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5. Re: Itinerary

Hi neighbor!!! Congrats on the upcoming wedding! You have already gotten some great advice on here and to further longhorn's suggested itinerary, I would even go so far as to say to stay in Malahide for your first 2 nights. It is easy to get into Dublin from Malahide (train station right in town) and easy to get to Malahide from the airport. It is also very easy to get to Howth on the train from Malahide with one change at Howth Junction. We have stayed at the Grand Hotel in Malahide and already have it on our plans for our next (third) trip to Ireland.

Information on the train stations can be found here: http://www.irishrail.ie/travelandstation

One thing that I would recommend is that you use every opportunity to stay multiple nights in one place because it is pretty tiring packing up each day and moving to a new location and get settled again...just to rinse and repeat the next day - especially on your honeymoon!

We have yet to 'do' the southern bits of Ireland (though we have spent over 30 nights there in two trips so far) so I will defer to others on your itinerary.

Good luck with the planning and enjoy! :-)

Saginaw, Michigan
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for Western Ireland
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6. Re: Itinerary

A random selection of opening hours here, following dubfam's theme of Ireland not being an early-morning country:

If you want to visit the Book of Kells in Trinity College:

www.tcd.ie/Library/bookofkells/opening-hours/

Newgrange (Bru na Boinne):

heritageireland.ie/en/…

Rock of Cashel:

heritageireland.ie/en/…

The English Market in Cork city opens earlier than average at 8am:

englishmarket.ie/operations/…

I join with the good wishes of others for your wedding in April. Congratulations!

england
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7. Re: Itinerary

I am an early morning person too, and I must agree with the others, Ireland is NOT an early place. You will struggle to get breakfast before 9am.

Breakfast is late, evening meals are late, everything is late.

We love traditional Irish music, the first time we went to Ireland we sat in a pub advertising 'music tonight' but got fed up by 10pm when nothing had started , and went back to our lodgings.

The only way I have found to stay up for the music is to get a sleep in the afternoon!!!

Birmingham...
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8. Re: Itinerary

Thanks for the advice! Lol I know we won't be at sites at 5:30 in the morning but my FI and I typically pack snacks, granola bars, etc. in our luggage so we can eat early and get on the roads while they are empty. Some of the sites are a couple hours away from the hotel we will be at the night before, but it should be no trouble for us to essentially arrive when they open The added benefit is that we save money on snacks and once the food is gone we have space for souveniers... otherwise I would overpack :)

We are hoping to stay at several of the same places for multiple nights, and we are willing to drive a little further during the day if necessary to make that happen (day trips instead of point to point trips ie: Dingle). Hopefully we will get to experience a full Irish breakfast on a couple of the mornings at these hotels.

Interesting to hear the comments about the Cliffs of Moher and Galway - that was sort of my thought as well. We are now talking about adding a day in Kilarney (doing Beara like PP suggested instead of Ring of Kerry) and then taking a day trip up to Belfast while we are in Dublin. That would be more appealing to us and would let us stay in the same hotel for a couple extra nights. As long as we aren't missing anything by cutting out the cliffs & Galway, I think that's a good plan! It would also let us end the trip in Kilarney, so we could hit the Rock of Cashel on the way back to Dublin on Sunday rather than trying to add it in with Kilkenny. It would be a nice mid-point break, and everything I hear says that Limerick isn't worth the time (which would be our other mid-point option from Kilarney).

Arlington, Virginia
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9. Re: Itinerary

If your goal is to stay in one place for several days, I would agree with Akandal and stay in Malahide rather than Dublin. We have done this on both of our trips to Ireland and found it very easy to get to/from Dublin by DART or bus. We even stayed a bit late in Dublin to do the Traditional Musical Pub Crawl and had no trouble getting back to Malahide. Malahide is a lovely coastal town and you should enjoy the evenings walking along the water or strolling through the parkland of Mahahide Castle, which has just re-opened after renovation. It's also easy to get on the highway from Malahide to anywhere, e.g. Glendalough, Kilkenny or Belfast.

I think your idea of a day trip to Belfast is excellent. We enjoyed our time there very much. We took the City Sightseeing HO/HO bus, and by sitting on the upper deck, I got some great photos, particularly of the murals on Shankill and Falls Roads. I'd also recommend a stop at the Crown Bar. (We booked a 'snug" in advance of our visit for a memorable pub lunch.) If you think you can squeeze in a day for a trip along the Antrim Coast to the Giant's Causeway, you'd see some spectacular scenery. If you should decide to overnight in Belfast for an extra day in Northern Ireland, I can highly recommend the Avenue House B&B where we stayed for 2 nights.

10. Re: Itinerary

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