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Post Info TOPIC: Our trip was a success!


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Our trip was a success!

Heres the scoop from my trip to Ireland with my mother: (for those of you that didn't know about this, my mom said last year that Ireland was a place she's always wanted to go to so my husband and I decided I should take her while she can still get around albeit with a walker).  She decided what she wanted to see and we tried to fit it on all 9 days! 

We arrived in gloomy Dublin on May 22 in the morning. Couldnt check into our hotel (Clifton Court) but they held our bags and we went for a walk and a drink.  The hotel was in a great location, close to everything but it was a disaster in that although it was supposed to have a lift it didnt and since mom uses a walker, stairs are a huge issue.  Since Bruce Springsteen was in town and there were two huge sporting matches on, we couldnt find another place, so we had to deal.  It was not pleasant.    I would not recommend.  We got into our rooms around 12:30 and took a nap until 5 as mom did not sleep on the plane at all.  Then we went out into the city and walked to the Temple Bar area and perused the shops and chose a place for dinner.  The waiter recommended a place to go to enjoy Irish music (Arlington Hotel) and we went there and it was very good.  The next day I went for an early morning run along the River Liffie and after breakfast we bought tickets for the hop-on hop-off city tour bus and took in Trinity College which was very interesting and then toured the library and saw the Book of Kells.

We then hopped back on the bus to St. Patrick's Cathedral and toured that.  Then it was on to St. Stephens Green (reminded me of Boston Common) and then we just stayed on the bus and listened to the commentary the rest of the way.  Mom did not want to go to the Guinness factory nor the Jameson Whiskey tour so we called it a day.  Went out for fish and chips for dinner.  

Saturday morning we checked out and caught a cab to the car rental place (Irish Car Rental - got an automatic for 260 euros for a week) and picked up an Opel Zafir a wagon type car.  Had booked an automatic mid sized car but they did not have any and tried to get me to take a manual small car!  Yeah right!  I cant drive a stick let alone on the left side of the road.  I had bought a portable GPS after Christmas cause Im not great at maps and I would be driving and Mom cannot do maps and she (we called her Eliza) was a godsend.  I would highly recommend using one.  She took us on roads that we would not otherwise have gone it and in most cases they were worth it. 

We drove southwest from Dublin to Kilkenny.  It was finally nice weather that day and we enjoyed walking the streets and checking out the castle.  We attended mass that night at the Dominican Black Abbey and then went for a dinner in town.  We stayed in a lovely B&B (Bregagh House). 

Sunday I went for an early morning walk and took in St. Marys and St. Canice's  cathedrals.    We then hit the road again and went south to Waterford to check out the crystal factory; the tour was very good; beautiful but very pricey stuff.  We then went west through some mountains (that seemed like hills to us) and had lunch at a pub in the town of Lismore.   We then went southwest to Kinsale for the night and stayed at Kilcaw House - very nice.  It was Moms birthday so we went to The White House Restaurant for dinner and had a lovely dinner with dessert and Baileys.  

Monday saw us driving to Blarney to see the Castle but we did not climb up of course to kiss the stone.  We also checked out the famous Blarney Woolen Mills.  Got to Killarney that day; weather not great but not pouring and the sun came out in the afternoon. 

We had a very nice hotel (Fairview) for the next two nights right in town with plenty of room and a Jacuzzi tub.  We went for a walk and had some lunch at McSweeneys Pub.  I found myself an internet café while Mom had a rest as she was feeling funny.  That night we had dinner at the Failte Pub.   We had a movie channel and stayed in that  night. 

Tuesday we drove the Ring of Kerry and although it was cloudy it did not rain.  It was lovely and driving it was fun.  Had dinner back in Killarney at Squires Pub. 

Wednesday we headed up to the Shannon River and took the ferrty and saw the awesome Cliffs of Moher and it was a beautiful day.  They were just amazing.  Steep, sheer and the view points are well maintained.  Checked into our hotel in Liscannor and had dinner in the musical town of Doolin at Fitzpatricks Pub.

On Thursday we drove through the southern part of the Burren and stopped in the town of Kilfenora to see St. Fachnans catherdral which had 12th century celtic crosses.  Then it was on to Bunratty where were had rest and a shower at the Bunratty Lodge B&B and then went to a Traditional Irish  Evening at the castle/corn barn which included dinner, drinks and a musical show of songs, stories, jokes and Irish dancing.  Most enjoyable. 

May 30th we were up early and headed to the airport for our 9 am flight. 

The country has very friendly people no matter what nationality and it is very, very green with wonderful fields partitioned by hedges or rock walls; many cows and sheep.  It was light until after 10 this time of year with the sun up by 4!    I think Mom saw all that she wanted to see in the 1000 km we did and driving on the road was a bit stressful the first afternoon but fine after that.  Met a few people driving towards me but did not drive towards anyone else.  I would love to go back again with my husband to do the many things that Mom was unable to do or didnt want to do.  Its very expensive though with gas running about $8 a gallon but renting a car gave us more flexibility that taking a bus toure.  I am glad we did it.  It is something we'll both never forget. 



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Thanks for reporting back.  Glad you had such an enjoyable trip.  No doubt that you found it a bit pricey with the Zafira.  They are known to be, um -- shall we say -- a bit, "THIRSTY" hmm hmm   The good news is, that the usually charge closer to 700 Euro for that model -- can you imagine that little gem is considered to be a SEVEN passenger People Mover????  confused confused confused confused

I'm so glad you got to share those special, memory making moments with your mother.

Our FIRST trip was in 1999.  We all but FORCED my wife's father to join us -- It's not that he didn't want to go -- it had always been his dream --but he was worried that at 81, with VERY poor eye-sight, that he would be too much  of a burden on us ..... cry cry

He was wrong, of course.  We took him and my Mother-in-law BACK, in 2000.
That was a BIT tough, but ...

  ----   It's probably THE ONE, GOOD DEED that I have done in my life.


-- Edited by Itallian Chauffeur at 22:36, 2008-06-10



Help Us to Help You.  The more you tell us about your plans (dates, interests, budget), the better we can tailor our advice to suit!


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Welcome back from Ireland. I'm glad you and your mother had a good time and were able to see so much. We really appreciate your taking the time to tell us about it. I'm glad you stood firm and got your automatic car. It's funny how they "found" the automatic when they told you they didn't have any! Ah, the tricks the car rental people play.

Out of it all what was:

Your favorite B&B or hotel

Your favorite meal

Your favorite town or area

I hope you and your husband get to go on a trip to Ireland together in the future. When you do we will be here to help.



"Ireland Expert"  Michele Erdvig

Click links for Michele's Book or Custom Ireland Itinerary

Visit Michele's Irish Shop for unique Irish gifts and beautiful photos of Ireland.


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Hi Fran,
Your Mom sounds like quiet a trooper!
Shame you didn't get a chance to check here first cause Michele would have told you that B&Bs and Guesthouses are best for early check-ins especially if requested in advance. Some allow check-ins from 7.45 for luggage drop off and 11.15 for room allocation.
Seems like you did all you intended to do within the 9 days!

A.A.D. = Almara Accommodations Dublin a free accommodation finding / booking service for all parts of Dublin


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Appreciate the report, as we are thinking of taking my 81 year-old father-in-law on a trip to Ireland, so many of the things you spoke about probably are things we would see as well. I dislike flying in and out of Dublin, however, so that is something we will take out of the mix, and I note that appears to be the one part of your trip that didn't go well for obvious reasons.

Go back yourselves for sure and enjoy the other sites -- staying away from Dublin's mess when you can.  To me that is not the Irish experience, althought there are many wonderful things to see there.  I enjoy the countryside and small villages much more than the urban grind.

Best regards and glad the trip came off -- your Mother no doubt was thrilled to be there.

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