My Ireland/Wales/Scotland Itinerary- What do you think?
Replies: 9 - Last Post: Jun 5, 2012 9:03 AM Last Post By: soulfire
May 30, 2012 6:31 PM
My Ireland/Wales/Scotland Itinerary- What do you think?Hi Everyone, this is my first post :) I am starting to plan our trip to Ireland, Wales and Scotland and find myself without any friends (who have been) to run over my itinerary with. I like to plan things "to death" so I would like to know what people think.
We are going in May of 2014, partly because I want to save up lots of money (I hate vacationing on a budget, we are foodies and like the good stuff!!) because we like to splurge. And, partly because I'm pregnant and I would like this baby to be at least 18 months old when we go.
It will be me, my husband, 10 year old son and the "baby". We are going to rent a car for the whole trip and stay in B & B's part of the time and in hotels for the rest.
I used a Rick Steve's Itinerary for a basis and then modified it for us. We really don't want to spend a lot of time in the cities, we're looking for the scenic outdoorsy adventurous stuff :) So, here goes:
We are starting off slow to let the kids (and us) adjust to the jetlag and time schedule...
Day 1: Early arrival into Dublin, rent car, drive to Glendalough and explore, then on to Kilkenny for 3 nights.
Day 2: Visit Rock of Cashel, back to Kilkenny
Day 3: Visit Waterford, anything else nearby, back to Kilkenny
Day 4: Drive to Cobh, visit for a few hours; Then, on to Blarney Castle; stay the night
Day 5: Drive to Killarney, explore Muckross House and surrounding area, stay 2 nights
Day 6: Drive Ring of Kerry, explore surrounding area
Day 7: Drive to Dingle, explore, stay 2 nights
Day 8: Ferry to Great Blasket Island and back, explore area
Day 9: Drive to Galway, stopping at Cliffs of Moher; park the car, take last shuttle/ferry to Aran Islands, stay 2 nights
Day 10: Explore whatever island we are on
Day 11: Ferry back to Galway, drive to Dublin, explore, stay 1 night
Day 12: Ferry from Dublin to Holyhead, UK; Drive to Betws-y-Coed (Wales), stay 3 nights
Day 13: Explore Snowdonia National Park
Day 14: Drive to Conwy to see Castle, lunch, drive to Caernarfon to see Castle, back to Betws-y-Coed
Day 15: Drive to Scotland, stopping in Lockerbie, UK for the night
Day 16: Drive to Oban, ferry to Isle of Mull, explore, stay 2 nights
Day 17: Ferry to Iona, explore, back to Mull
Day 18: Ferry back to Oban, take distillery tour, drive to Inverness, stay 3 nights
Day 19: Explore Inverness
Day 20: Explore Inverness and area
Day 21: Drive to Stirling, stay 2 nights
Day 22: Explore Stirling
Day 23: Drive to Edinburgh, stay 1 night
Day 24: Fly home from Edinburgh
Day 25: COLLAPSE!!!
I know it's a lot, and a long trip, but there is just NO WAY I'm paying so much for airfare for 12 days in Ireland and then coming back (and paying all that airfare!) for Scotland, lol.
I tried to break it up so the driving wasn't overwhelming, for the kids, but also so we can make unplanned stops when we see something neat :)
So, what do you think? Advice, suggestions?
May 30, 2012 11:02 PM
1I can only comment on the Scottish section.
Unless you have personal reasons/interests for stopping in Lockerbie there are nicer places such as Moffat.
Day 18 is long. You won't have time to stop to see neat things such as Glencoe (slightly off route), Ben Nevis (best view slightly off route). Suggest you drop the distillery visit. They sound romantic but nothing moves! May be able to squeeze one in on day 17 -
Day 21 I suggest drive to Stirling (3 hrs), visit Stirling (4 hrs) , drive to Edinburgh ( 1hr)
Day 22/23 explore Edinburgh.
I know people will say 2 days in Inverness is too much. I disagree with them, especially if you
have a car.
Edited by: pedro555
May 31, 2012 3:49 AM
21) Waterford has the crystal factory maybe worth a visit - see http://www.waterfordvisitorcentre.com/
2) Rock of Cashel won't last you more than 1 hr
3) Stirling's not great, though at least they got rid of the ridiculous statue of William of Wallace that was a dead ringer for Mel Gibson. I'd chop your time there and stick it on Edinburgh. 1 night for Edinburgh is insufficient.
4) Hiring a car in Ireland and dehiring in Edinburgh will cost a small fortune, but consider dehiring it in Dublin, crossing to Wales as foot passengers (which would be a damn sight cheaper anyway), then hiring another car in Holyhead.
Personally I think you're way overdoing it with a 18 month in tow, but once he's born and you get to know him you may choose to tweak your trip accordingly. Also, I dunno why you don't go in May next year. Nothing wrong with having a 6month in tow. Refer to the travelling with kids branch for expert advice.
May 31, 2012 8:01 AM
3I would agree that one night in Edinburgh is not sufficient.
May 31, 2012 8:02 AM
May 31, 2012 12:48 PM
5I think you will get tired of Kilkenny pretty quickly, and you're missing Conamara and county Mayo, which are some of the most beautiful parts of Ireland. Why not overnight in Glendalough, overnight the next night in Kilkenny, see the Rock of Cashel on your way south, and give yourselves an extra night in Galway or somewhere west of there?
Or overnight in Kilkenny after visiting Glendalough, again see the Rock of Cashel on your way south, and then you could have two nights somewhere like Clifden, Westport or Cong, which would really be much nicer and more scenic than Kilkenny?
But horses for courses. That said, I think the west of Ireland is the best thing the country has to offer, so I would sacrifice Kilkenny and Waterford to get there without a moment's thought.
Jun 1, 2012 4:31 AM
Jun 2, 2012 6:29 PM
7Thank You all for the replies!! This is exactly what I was looking for :) I'm going to use the advice to tweak it a bit, especially concerning Kilkenny and the long day 18.
Does renting the car in Ireland and dropping it off in Scotland cost a lot more b/c it's two different countries? I had wondered about that, but haven't been able to look it up yet.
To whoever asked why we aren't going next year.... mostly because, we are tired, lol. We just got back (in March) from 2 weeks in California, then a few months before that 2 weeks in Disney World, then 2 months before that we were in Williamsburg (Great Wolf Lodge) and from there went straight to Georgia for my sisters wedding (stayed a week), 3 months before that was a 3 week road trip to visit family all over the South (United States), another Williamsburg trip before that, a couple 3-4 hr. trips to PA in there somewhere... and the year before was another trip to Georgia, several camping trips and a week in Niagara Falls. We. are. tired. And we need a break :) And in that break, we need to use travel funds on sprucing up the house ;) So, that's why we are waiting until 2014.
Is there another Stirling somewhere?? I do have one friend who has family from Scotland and she spent a month over there, visiting all over, and she told me I "just HAD to go to Stirling. She just LOVED Stirling... it was SO nice." But you guys don't seem so impressed with it, so I'm wondering if there is another Stirling, in England or something??
Jun 3, 2012 3:31 AM
Jun 5, 2012 9:03 AM
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