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Day trip from Dublin - December

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New York, New York...
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Day trip from Dublin - December

Hi, I will be traveling with my family to Dublin from December 28th - January 2nd. We will be spending most of our time in Dublin, however I would like to take a day trip outside the city. We have some first time travelers to Ireland, so I would really love for them to walk through one of the many castles here. Would a day trip to Cork/Blarney be the best option? I've heard wonderful things about Wicklow & Glendalough, however I'm not sure if that is a better place to visit in warmer months? I would love any suggestions. Thank you!

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1. Re: Day trip from Dublin - December

Will you have a car or not?

Cork/Blarney is certainly a doable option whether by public transport or car, although the train journey is quite long

Other options could be Cashel/Cahir or maybe Kilkenny.

There are castles substantially closer to Dublin (e.g. Trim Castle) that could be done as a half day trip.

Cavan
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2. Re: Day trip from Dublin - December

Kilkenny might be a better location, take the train.

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3. Re: Day trip from Dublin - December

Because your travel dates coincide with the Christmas/New Year holiday time here, you might be limited in your choice of castles that you can visit. Also bear in mind that darkness will fall around 4.30PM at that time of year.

Trim Castle was suggested, with which I would concur, but unfortunately it only opens at the weekends during the winter months and it will be closed the weekend that you are here, due to the New Year holiday.

Kilkenny Castle has also been suggested, and according to the website (www.heritageireland.ie) that will be open when you are here. However, I would say to you that it is not a castle in the accepted sense - it is more a stately home in the style of a french chateau.

However, Cahir Castle, also suggested, is more in keeping with the accepted idea of a castle, and according to the website it reopens on 31 Dec - although I would not be sure that it will be open on 1st January, as that is aholiday here, but it should be on the 2nd. If you do visit it, make sure you watch the 20 minute audio/visual as it will give you a good history on castles and do take the guided tour of the castle which is included in the entrance fee. This is a typical defensive style castle and the guide gives an excellent explanation of the various defensive features of the castle. You can even see a canon ball, that was fired during a siege of the castle centuries ago, still embedded in the castle wall. Having visited all these places, I would recommend Cahir Castle.

The Rock of Cashel would be on your route to Cahir and would be interesing to visit also, if you have the time. It will be open on your dates here. It is not a castle, as many visitors assume, but ecclesiastical ruins on a rocky outcrop with an interesting history. Again, if you do visit, make sure you take the guided tour.

County Dublin...
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4. Re: Day trip from Dublin - December

You'll have a ball.

Come and enjoy.

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5. Re: Day trip from Dublin - December

Thank you everyone for the responses! This information is very helpful.

We would only have a choice between two days for our day trip, Dec 30th or Dec 31st. I see that some places may be closed.

We planned on joining an organized tour, we wouldn't rent a car. There are a few companies that pick you up via coach/shuttle bus in Dublin, take you on the tour, then return to the city. I was going to narrow down which place I wanted to visit, then research the companies from there.

I've never been to Rock of Cashel or Cahir Castle, I'm leaning towards these choices.

Thanks again!

6. Re: Day trip from Dublin - December

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