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Post Info TOPIC: planning a trip by Kami


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planning a trip by Kami
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Unregistered User
(4/1/04 9:57 am)

planning a trip

My husband and I are both teachers. We are planning a trip to Ireland, London, Paris this summer. We have approximatley 3 weeks to travel from mid June-July. We've looked at several books and your web site, but there seems to be so many options. We plan to rent a car for 7-10 days in Ireland and would like to stay in B&B's, possibly a castle or two. We would like to tour as much of Ireland as possible. What advice do you have? Thank you :)

Unregistered User
(4/1/04 12:17 pm)

Not long enough!

Wow! London, Paris, and Ireland all in three weeks? That's going to be quite a rushed trip. If it were me I would cut one of those places off the list. A person could easily spend two weeks just in London and not have enough time. It's a very big place with a lot to see.If you just want to see some of the major sights then you still need about six days. Paris, maybe four days. As for Ireland, I spent a whole three weeks just in Ireland and still didn't get to some places I wanted to, but I was travelling by train and bus. You will have to be very picky about what you see and what gets left off your list or you won't actually see much of Ireland other than a green blur. I would suggest picking two or three towns to stay in and doing day trips from there. If you have ever read any of Rick Steves books about travel he gives a very good piece of advice: plan you trip like you are coming back again. In other words, you don't have to see everything this time.

Unregistered User
(4/1/04 12:21 pm)

Find your places of interest

Wow - you were really broad with your questions. I think you need to narrow down what you want to see - a lot. Read over a few travel books and try to pick out the places/things that are of interest to you. Try to look at lots of pictures because that will help too. Once you have picked a list of things to see, then put them in priority order because more than likely you will not have time to see them all. Once you have done that, then try to put together a rough itenerary with a break down of what to see for each day (try to figure in slow drive times as well). Post your first draft of the itenerary on this board and trust me, people will give you excellent advice of what to cut out and how to re-arrange things better. How many days will you be in Ireland again? I was not sure if you meant you will be there for the full 3 weeks and only have a rental car for the 7 days, or if your total in Ireland will only be 7 days. I do know one thing for sure from my past experience... you will have a tendancy to try to cram too much in - DON'T! You will be exhausted and will not have taken the time to savor Ireland. Also if you are only going to be there for 7 days, you should try to confine yourself to one area of the country instead of crossing all over the place. If you spread out too much then you will spend too much time driving in the car and then you will really be missing out on sooo much! Here are a few areas that interested me - maybe this will give you some ideas to get started:

-Gallway City
-Kylemore Castle
-Cliffs of Moher - a must see in my opinion
-Killarney (my favorite town in Ireland - Lakes of Killarney, Muckross friary, Muckross house)
-Ring of Kerry
-Dingle Penninsula
-Aran Islands
-Blarney Castle
-Rock of Cashel
-New Grange
-Trim Castle
-Hill of Tara

Hope this helps to get you started!
- Carol

Unregistered User
(4/1/04 12:45 pm)

Lucky you!

Hi Kami,

You have been given some good advice! On our first trip to Ireland, we had ten days there with our teenage sons. We started in Dublin and came across the southern coast from Cork to Kinsale, then over to Dingle, up to Galway and back across to leave from Dublin. At the time we thought we had to do it all, but since we have been back twice since then, we are learning to pick an area and concentrate on it. Last April we stayed in the Northwest area and saw as much as we could in about a week. In October we hope to go back and spend a week in the Southwest. You are bound to do a lot of driving, which takes much longer than you would imagine.

Once you have an idea of what you would most like to see, map it out! You may find that it works better to fly into Dublin and out of Shannon instead of crossing back across the country. You may decide to leave out some things if they don't fit in with the flow of your directions on the map.

In Ireland you can easily base yourself in an area for 2 or 3 nights and see quite a bit once you have decided what it is you most want to see.

Having said all that, I would add that I personally wouldn't cut my time in Paris! We were there for 6 days in February, and while we saw many of the highlights, I hope to go back someday and try for the many things we didn't have time to see. It's a very different style of vacation, since in Paris you are most likely based in a hotel for the week or so and going out to different parts of the city or its environs each day without having to stray too far.

Whatever you decide, it will be a great trip!


Michele Erdvig
Posts: 2397
(4/2/04 1:38 am)

Re: planning a trip

Hi Kami,

Everyone has given you excellent advice already. There are always more things to see and do in any country than the time you will have. That is why it's important to plan such a trip carefully. As Carol has said you must get organized. The more homework you do now the smoother things will go in Ireland. And since you will be there at the height of the season it might be wise to make advance reservations for lodgings if you are particular about where you stay. Since the castle hotels are very popular, reservations there would be a definite and ASAP.

Besides getting your flights, passports and rental car these are some things to do:

1. Read and look at photo books of Ireland to see what appeals.

2. Make a list of what you want to see and do. Put the most important things first.

3. If some of the things are fairly far and divergent from most others, cross them off. You won't have time to see them.

4. Concentrate on one or two areas of Ireland because you can't ever see it all in the amount of time available.

5. Get out your map, list and calendar.

6. Plan an itinerary, hopefully breaking up the one-night stays with two-night stays.

7. Post your itinerary here and we will all give you our opinions.

8. Fine-tune!

The planning can be half the fun of a trip. However, if you feel you need help or don't have the time to do all of that you can send me an inquiry to see if I have openings for new clients. I do charge a fee for doing custom itineraries. But all the advice here on the forum is free. So you have many options open to you.

If you have more questions as your trip approaches, be sure to post and we will be delighted 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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