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Post Info TOPIC: Just Back from 2 Weeks in Ireland! by bigmissy


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Just Back from 2 Weeks in Ireland! by bigmissy

Registered User
Posts: 4
(9/2/01 6:16 pm)

Just Back from 2 Weeks in Ireland!


My husband and I just returned from a 17 day trip to Ireland. We had a great time! It rained for most of the first 2 days and the last 2 days, but the remainder was hot and sunny! We landed in Dublin and stayed there for the first 2 nights. Saw "The Hunt for Red Willie" at the Peacock Theatre (basement level of Abbey Theatre). It was just hilarious. Go if you get a chance.

Couldn't wait to get out to the countryside. We headed down to Powerscourt and Glendalough - unfortunately it was pouring rain but we endured anyway. Stayed 2 nights in Arthurstown at Dunbrody House, a ferry ride away from Waterford. Wonderful place. Loved Kilkenny castle tour - very interesting. Loved Rock of Cashel! Really enjoyed the Waterford tour and the shopping there is great!

Spent 2 nights in Kinsale at the Old Bank - very nice. Had a 3rd floor room overlooking the harbor - fantastic! Wonderful food at the Vintage and Blue Haven restaurants. Strongly recommend both of them. Nice shops there - loved the Cozy Cottage (I think that's the name) for linens and lace tablecloths and such. Fun at the Lord Kinsale pub - 2 guys playing and singing American and Irish music, but most of the patrons were locals who each took a turn singing with the mike. Unreal!!

Next 2 nights on Carragh Lake at Ard na sidh. Very nice old tutor style mansion. Wonderful food! Did the Kerry Ring counterclockwise, but we left by 9:30 a.m. in order to beat most of the tour buses and it worked for most of the trip. The day tour buses leave Killarney at 10:30, so if you leave earlier, you're okay. The Ring of Kerry wasn't as great as we heard about. Maybe we missed something, but it seemed like it was just a lot of driving on narrow roads and most of the time you couldn't see over the walls. I do remember some roads that had great views, but not as many as we expected. One thing we liked was the Skellig fudge store. It's a small shop so keep your eyes peeled - the best chocolates we ever had!

Next spent 2 nights on Dingle at the Milltown House. Great guesthouse with wonderful hosts. Ask for a harbor view- it's fanstastic in the morning. The Slea Head drive is fantantastic. At every turn, there is a gorgeous sea cliff view! Bring tons of film! Also, if you have time, check out Blasket Island Heritage Center along the way. Very nice center with a film about the Blasket Islanders - the small group of people who lived there until 1953. Very touching and interesting stories. You can go over there and see all the remains of the stone homes and farms.

Don't miss the beach along the way also where they filmed Ryan's Daughter. Really large nice beach.

We skipped the Conor pass - heard it was really narrow etc. and we were really sick of the narrow roads by then. Had wonderful fish dinners at the Chart House and Doyles. Actually liked the food better at the Chart House - more gourmet style.

Next 2 nights in Ballyvaugh at Gregan's Castle Hotel - wonderful location on a hill overlooking the Burren and the Galway Bay. Dinner there was fair but everything else wonderful. Loved the Burren area. Try to catch a hike up one of the green roads. Great views. Lots of ruins, dolmans, etc. Yes, Monk's Pub a must for seafood chowder.

Next 2 nights at Cashel House Hotel near Clifden. Wonderful place - fantastic dinner. Clifden is a neat busy little town with lots of good pubs, restaurants and shops. You must make reservations for dinner!!! Everywhere we went to eat was booked until 9, except Mitchell's. A nice place on the main street - good food too. We really wanted to go to High Moors - we called all day to get a reservation with no answer. Finally drove over there and no one was there. It looked like a really neat place with a great view. Go there if you can.

Get the Heritage Card for sure - we used it all the time. The roads are really narrow and rough, but you will survive. Get an automatic for sure and take out all the insurance they offer. We dented the corner of our car and lost a hubcap because we got too close to the infamous stone walls.

Sorry this is so long. We really enjoyed ourselves and saw beautiful scenery and loved the history. The abbeys and castles are from another world. Loved the cemetaries.


Michele Erdvig
Posts: 240
(9/3/01 5:02 pm)
Welcome Home Ginny

Hello Ginny,

Welcome home and thanks so much for taking the time to post your trip report here. I really enjoyed reading it and it wasn't too long. The details made it come alive. Sorry to hear it rained in Glendalough. It really is a magical place.

The nice long beach on the Dingle Peninsula where parts of Ryan's Daughter was filmed is Inch Strand. It's over four miles long and is backed by huge sand dunes. It's great for walking. I've gone all the way out to the end and back. Quite a trek. You can also drive on the beach but I doubt if your car rental insurance will cover that. Local gliding clubs sometimes use Inch for a runway at certain times of the year. It's fascinating to watch the gliders take off and land.

What was your very favorite experience? Or were there too many to tell? Are you going back again?


Registered User
Posts: 5
(9/3/01 5:34 pm)

Re: Welcome Home Ginny

Hi Michele,

I can't really pinpoint one thing that was my favorite. In fact, a lot of it is still a blur in my mind. I hope my photos will help me sort it all out. But the history, the monasteries and old churches made a real impression on me and my husband. It's hard for us to realize how old some of the ruins were. And how important the monasteries were to the future of Christianity via the written word.

I definitely want to return to perhaps start in Dublin and head north into the Boyne Valley and then to Donegal, then back down the Connemara/Galway region again. Unfortunately it was pouring for the 2 days we had in Connemara which was a shame because we never got to really see the Twelve Bens or the beauty of the area. I'd also like to spend more time in the Shannon/Limerick area. We missed that this time. We were really glad we had time on the Dingle Peninsula - it was gorgeous.

I really miss it aleady. It's kind of depressing to think you spend all this time planning and anticipating and it's over before you know it. But we have a lot of great memories. But I am still jealous when I read about the people who are still planning their trips. I want to go along with them!!!

Thanks for your help with my plans before we left. And thanks for this website!!


Michele Erdvig
Posts: 242
(9/4/01 3:02 pm)

Antidote to Post Vacation Depression

Hi Ginny,

I'm so glad that I could help in a small way to make your trip to Ireland memorable. It's people like you who take the time to share and post about their trips that makes this forum worthwhile.

Yes, it can be a letdown after a vacation. The antidote is to immediately start planning another - even if it's a few years away. The anticipation and planning are half the fun of the whole process.

The ancientness of Ireland is amazing, especially when Americans realize that most of the history of their country is just a few hundred years old. It seems that every rock, field, hill and ruin has a story to tell in Ireland. The more you read about it the more you discover this is true.

Hope you got some good photos and have fun putting an album together.



"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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