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Post Info TOPIC: IC's Planned 2024 Do As I Say – Not As I Do Tour


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IC's Planned 2024 Do As I Say – Not As I Do Tour


I constantly advise others to Slow down, that Less is more and if visiting for two weeks or less, Draw a line twixt Dublin and Galway and choose EITHER above, or below that line. These are the advises that I give and I stand by the validity of them. However

Needs must when the devil drives!

MY visit has a three-part component. A favored 'Cousin' has invited us to a major gathering in celebration of their 60th birthday. The two travelers joining us are my two sisters-in-law that are frequent travel companions that have already visited Ireland with us on 6 previous occasions NONE of which included Donegal, or any of Ulster. Furthermore, as I rapidly approach the time when securing a rental car in Ireland becomes problematic, I am closing in on completing my 'bucket list' goal of visiting ALL of the remaining Irish Round Towers. This, then, is my attempt to accomplish those three conflicting goals.

Now, I just need to hope and pray that the fairies don't laugh and Lord willing and the creek don't rise everything works out to plan! Flights are booked, rental car and lodgings are reserved.

15 July (Monday): Depart SRQ on American Airlines to PHL. What was booked as a 2 hour layover is now 4, due to change to original flight! Depart PHL to LHR.

16 July (Tuesday): After a 2 hour layover, fly Aer Lingus from LHR to SNN. American Airlines Code share flight, so all on the same ticket.

Collect rental car (Manual Transmission, diesel, VW Tuareg or equivalent) from Europcar. Waiving insurances using my Credit Card coverage. Drive to Kilkee, where we are booked into the Stella Maris Hotel.

17 July (Wednesday): Visit Scattery Island Round Tower and then drive to Dublin where we are booked into the Clayton Hotel Dublin Airport for the night.

18 July (Thursday): Collect our two traveling companions from the airport and then drive to an Airbnb in Watergrasshill, County Cork where we will spend 4 nights.

20 July (Saturday): Massive Birthday Celebration. If it's anything like the last few we've attended, most of Sunday will be spent attempting to recover --- and neither my wife nor I drink!

22July (Monday): Drive to Sligo, where we are booked into The Address Hotel for the night,

23 July (Tuesday): Drive to Dunfanaghy, County Donegal. Stops along the way likely will include Donegal town, Sleive League and possibly, Glencolumbkille. In Dunfanaghy, we are booked into an Airbnb in town center for 3 nights.

Trips while here includes a ferry to Tory Island and a drive to Glenveagh Castle and National Park, Poisoned Glen and possibly, Murder Hole Beach.

26 July (Friday): Drive from Dunfanaghy to Ballycastle, County Antrim. Booked into a Penthouse apartment at the Ballycastle Marina through Airbnb for 3 nights. Stops along the way to include Grianan of Aileach, Derry (for the recently re-discovered Round Tower ruin!), Dunluce Castle, Giant's Causeway, Bushmills and, possibly, Mussenden.

27 July (Saturday): Drive to the Sandy Bay Marina on Lough Neagh for a trip out to visit the Ram's Island Round Tower. on the Island Warrior at 12:30. The boat only runs on Saturdays and Sundays. On the return to Ballycastle, stops will include the Dark Hedges and any sites missed on Friday.

28 July (Sunday): Coastal Dive Torr Head and around to Belfast, then back, to Ballycastle.

29 July (Monday): Drive to Dublin Airport area to overnight at the Clayton Hotel Dublin Airport and return rental car. Potential stops along the way Belfast, Carlingford, Monasterevin.

30 July (Tuesday): Depart Dublin Airport for flight to CLT. After 2 hour layover, continue on, to SRQ.



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Bob

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Roy


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Any information on 2024 tourism numbers? Since retiring, we have mostly been traveling in shoulder seasons, but this year we need to go late August into early September. Ive put together an itinerary on short notice even though I dislike having to. Flying into Dublin (which a hate, but from Dulles there are few options. Staying with my sister in law in Dublin first night, then off to stay in Geesala, Mayo for the nights, Keel, Achill Island for two nights, then to Mullingar. We decided to base ourselves at the Bloomfield House for five nights and visit with my wifes family from there. My wife went to boarding school at what is now the Bloomfield House hotel once upon a time. Then back to Dublin for one night, followed by three nights in Middlewich, England to visit more family, two nights back in Dublin before flying home.

Roy

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Roy


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Glad to hear you have plans in the works!

From what I'm hearing, tourist numbers are up.  Available accommodation options are also severely reduced.  Many closed during Covid and decided not to reopen and a major influx of refugees (mostly from Ukraine) and the government took over a number of hotel rooms and B&Bs to house them.  Dublin was severely impacted and there are even 'Tent Cities' there.  Consequently, prices have risen dramatically.  You're lucky to have your Dublin stays sorted.

If you have secured bookings already, you SHOULD be fine but I wouldn't recommend 'winging it'!



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Bob

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Roy


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Surprisingly I was able to work out accommodations. I found the past two years that weekends are often the trickiest. I suspect weddings are a large part of that. Maybe its old age, but I prefer the autonomy of visiting family and not staying with them preferable.

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Roy


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Given my age, I'm in no position to refute that!

We always try to book our own accommodations whenever the relatives allow -- but, in all fairness, whenever we are in the proximity of any of them, we invariably spend the majority of our time WITH them!

Glad you managed to find suitable accommodations.  I've been hearing LOTS of warnings concerning popular destinations and venues.  Luckily for you, you've chosen sites that are a bit off the traditional "tourist trail" -- so that may have helped.



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Bob

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Bob,

Looks like the stars have aligned for your trip. Glad you got the accommodations sorted early as they fill fast especially in prime season. The 60th sounds like a blast. And finishing off the round tower bucket list is fantastic.

Hope you have the best time ever.

Michele

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"Ireland Expert"  Michele Erdvig

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



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It really has been an 'Alignment of Stars'!

We're flying American Airlines -- so the first 'Bullet' dodged was the threatened strike by Flight Attendants.

The Second was the connecting flight from LHR to Shannon -- which is on Aer Lingus, as a 'Codeshare' -- who have apparently just settled their Pilot issues.

There's been a few personal issues, too -- but fortunately they've either proven to be surmountable, or no longer as pressingly immediate.

I've notified the appropriate Financial Institutions, secured the required CC "Letter" and prepaid for all the accommodations other than our first night, in Kilkee.

Packing has begun and airport transport is set.

Come Monday and we're on our way!!

 



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Bob

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Bon voyage. Let the fun begin!

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"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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