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1st time Ireland itinerary by Betsy
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Betsy
Unregistered User
(8/27/05 5:25 pm)

1st time Ireland itinerary


Hi Michelle!

I just found your site, and it's wonderful. It's nice that Ireland has an unofficial ambassador who can help travellers fully enjoy that beautiful country.

Below is my final (I think) itinerary. I've had to tweak it several times, finally removing the Kinsale/Cobh area. I just wanted more time in Connemara. What do you think?


Day 1(arrival at Shannon): stay at Ballynahinch for 3 nights

Day 2 - explore Connemara area (National Park, Leenane, Clifden, etc...)

Day 3 - Aran islands

Day 4 - Burren, Cliffs of Moher...driving to Dingle. stay overnight at Berry Lodge, Milltown Malbay.

Day 5- drive to Dingle Peninsula. Explore Dingle town. stay at The Shores for 2 nights

Day 6 -Sciurid Archaelogical tours/Dingle Peninsula

Day 7 - to Kenmare. Stay 3 nights at Shelburne Lodge.

Day 8 - Beara Peninsula **possibly do part of Beara and part of Mizen (someone on another board had said this was possible -he's a huge fan of Mizen. I think it might be better just to do the whole of Beara rather than only part of both, but......I'm open)

Day 9- Killarney National Park

Day 10 overnight Echo Lodge Ballingarry, relax on grounds

Day 11 - Leave from Shannon

I will be using Discover Ireland tours (car and driver) for my stay in Connemara, possibly for the whole trip. Initially, I was thinking of using local car companies from Kenmare and Dingle so that I could just pay the driver per day, rather than have to pay his expenses (meals, lodging), but DI (and they have been absolutely wonderful; Eric is a doll) has suggested that if I rely on local companies for getting around, I may be inconvenienced. That is to say, they may be late or they could say they are fully booked.......I hadn't considered that possibility. What do you think?


Thanks so much!

Betsy



Michele Erdvig
Administrator
Posts: 3365
(8/28/05 1:53 am)

Re: 1st time Ireland itinerary


Betsy,

I'm glad you found my site. Loved the comments about being Ireland's unofficial ambassador. ;)

What time of year will you be visiting Ireland? If it is during the high season you might want to consider hiring the driver for the whole time. Off-season you might get away with doing it piecemeal. You will want to check on doing it both ways to see what will best meet your needs and is most economical. You should also consider getting quotes from more than one company if you have time.

I think your itinerary looks excellent. You have chosen some lovely places to stay with multiple-night stays at most.

Whether you do Mizen & Beara probably depends on time of year. But it is most likely stretching it to do both in one day. They are both lovely but as you know, you can't see it all.

Let me know if I can help in any other way or if you have any more questions.

Michele



Betsy
Unregistered User
(8/28/05 9:56 am)

First Time - October


Hi Michelle!

Oh boy - I can't believe I forgot to mention when I'm going. I will be leaving NY at the end of September and return on October 9. So, I will avoid the hordes of tourists that descend in the summer, which I'm always happy to do.

I know that I could probably put something together for a day trip to Killarney National Park; there are tour companies that handle that kind of thing, and from what I can tell reading other message boards, most people do that (the Gap of Dunloe tour sounds great - especially the boat trip part). I'd read a lot about Sciurid Archaelogical tours in Dingle - that's definitely something I would want to do.

What I'm most concerned about now is the 3% that Citibank and Chase tack on to foreign transactions. I may try to get another card with a bank that does not do that, or I could just use cash for many of my transactions. What do you think?

Thanks!



Michele Erdvig
Administrator
Posts: 3366
(8/29/05 10:24 pm)

Re: First Time - October


Betsy,

Thanks for the additional info. You have chosen a good time of year to visit Ireland. I was there last year around the same time and the autumn colors were setting in. You will not have to contend with tons of tourists though a few (like you) will still be around.

Since you have reservations at the various places you mentioned (or do you?) the owners and management will be an excellent resource for you. I suggest contacting them for names, phone numbers, email addresses of taxi drivers and tour operators that they would recommend in each location. That will enable you to check with each of them to see what they can offer, rates and whether reservations for certain things will be a problem at that time of year. Unless there is something special going on like a big wedding or something similar, I don't think they will be booked up.

With the shorter days you should probably think of dropping Mizen from your itinerary and just concentrate on Beara. With an early start you might fit in a trip to Ilnacullin Gardens on Garinish Island (near Glengarriff).

The Gap of Dunloe and the Sciurid Tour sound fun, weather permitting. You will also want to have plans for "Rainy Day Activities".

If you have time, getting another credit card that does not charge the 3% makes sense. I just got another one myself since the cc I usually use just changed their rules. Using cash that you get from an ATM will generally give you a good rate too. But check with your bank in advance. They have been adding on extras lately. Take a look at my "Money" & "Tips & Tricks" pages for more info.

Michele


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