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9 days 8 nights first time in Ireland :) Need advice!

Berlin, Germany
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9 days 8 nights first time in Ireland :) Need advice!

Hi fellow travel bugs! I'm heading to Ireland in mid October and will be landing in Dublin. I have about 9 days to cover as much as I can and enjoy the sights and culture. I'm doing a solo trip this round and was planning to rent a car to road trip around. Here's my current itinerary:

Day 1: Arrive in Dublin around noon, spend day in Dublin

Day 2: Sight see around Dublin

Day 3: Drive to Glendalough, (spend 3-4 hours??) drive to Galway

Day 4: Day trip to The Connemara, Kylemore Abbey & Cong Village Tour/ Aran Island

Day 5: The Burren, Cliffs of Moher, stay in Doolin

Day 6: Drive to Dingle

Day 7: Stay in Dingle, Slea Head drive? Sight seeing

Day 8: Make my way to Shannon/Cork

Day 9: Fly out to London

So as you can see, its still a loose itinerary. I'm solo traveling and coming from Malaysia, definitely on a tight budget (Our currency is 1/5 of the euro *sob*) I suppose some day tours might be nice to meet people and spend some time socializing. Having said that, I do enjoy some days in solitude, doing some meditation and yoga in some of these amazing celtic locations. I'm open to any suggestions regarding trip planning, B&B, airbnb, restaurants, pubs, any offbeat path that allows me to experience Ireland in a unique way, I'm down for it.

Thank you so much in advance for your shares and input. I hope to connect with you guys. Namaste!!

12 replies to this topic
Venice, Florida
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1. Re: 9 days 8 nights first time in Ireland :) Need advice!

Glendalough is a bit out of the way between Dublin and Galway, and with the shorter daylight hours you'll be hard pressed to include 3-4 hours there.

Day 4 is a total, 'No Go'. You would likely need three nights in Galway to cover everything on your list. Connemara and Kylemore are a full day tour. Adding in Cong would be a MAJOR stretch. Visiting any one of the Aran Islands is also an all day trip that leaves NO time for any of the other locations on your list.

Hiroshima, Japan
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2. Re: 9 days 8 nights first time in Ireland :) Need advice!

As beautiful as the Aran Islands are... I might cut that first from day four, if you've limited time, unless the weather is spectacular. We lived in Clare when I was younger and the Islands were a FULL day trip. And we went on a July day that was particularly nice (for Clare) and it was freezing. Not wintertime in Canada freezing, but Ireland wet and windy and cold. It might be quite interesting compared to Malaysia, but it has the chance of being memorable mainly for the weather. On the other hand, as mentioned, Clare has so much. On our upcoming trip to Doolin, we will spend two nights (mainly because we want to walk to music) and drive and explore the rest of Clare during the day... and I know that two full days won't be nearly enough time.

Dingle, Ireland
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3. Re: 9 days 8 nights first time in Ireland :) Need advice!

Day 8, where are you flying out from, Shannon, or Cork?

Salt Lake City, Utah
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4. Re: 9 days 8 nights first time in Ireland :) Need advice!

Glendalough is 100% worth the visit - it is our absolute favorite place in all of Ireland - but I concur with how out of the way it is based on your itinerary. On day 6 you just have "drive to Dingle" - that will only take you about 3.5 hours.

If I were you, I'd enjoy the Wicklows and Glendalough all day on day 3, spend that night in Dublin, then get up super early on Day 4, drive west, do some of your day 4 activities late morning/afternoon and then end up in Galway at night on day 4. Adjust other activities accordingly on the next couple of days.

I also concur with day 4 being extremely difficult if not impossible. Aran Islands are great, but they are indeed time consuming. Cong Village is OK, but would not even crack my personal "Top 25 Things to Do in Ireland" list.

Berlin, Germany
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5. Re: 9 days 8 nights first time in Ireland :) Need advice!

Thank you for your feedback! Ok, someone suggested that I take day 3 for just Glendalough and Wicklows then return to Dublin after, head out to Galway on day 4. Would that make more sense? And then spend day 5 either at Connemara or Aran Island.

Berlin, Germany
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6. Re: 9 days 8 nights first time in Ireland :) Need advice!

So my updated itinerary:

Day 1: Arrive in Dublin around noon, spend day in Dublin

Day 2: Sight see around Dublin

Day 3: day trip to Glendalough

Day 4: Drive to The Connemara, (Any good stops along the way?? ) then to Galway

Day 5: The Burren, Cliffs of Moher, stay in Doolin

Day 6: Drive to Dingle

Day 7: Stay in Dingle, Slea Head drive? Sight seeing

Day 8: Make my way to Shannon/Cork (Suggestion for this day? I haven't fully decided yet)

Day 9: Fly out to London

Dingle, Ireland
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7. Re: 9 days 8 nights first time in Ireland :) Need advice!

You could have an extra day in Dingle and fly to London Stansted or Luton on day nine from Kerry airport, which is an hour down the road

Waterford, Ireland
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8. Re: 9 days 8 nights first time in Ireland :) Need advice!

https://www.connemara.net/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Connemara

p.s. there is no definite article in the name - just Connemara.

I'd suggest, go directly to Connemara, there is nothing much on the way from Dublin and Connemara is beautiful. Dublin to Spiddal will take you about three hours anyway.

While in Dingle, be sure to go over the Conor Pass, either arriving or leaving.

Enjoy.

Berlin, Germany
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9. Re: 9 days 8 nights first time in Ireland :) Need advice!

That sounds like a fantastic idea! I'll check flights from Kerry Airport :)

Also, staying an extra day in Dingle sounds like a great plan. Thank you!

Berlin, Germany
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10. Re: 9 days 8 nights first time in Ireland :) Need advice!

So my final itinerary:

Day 1: Arrive in Dublin around noon, spend day in Dublin

Day 2: Sight see around Dublin

Day 3: Explore more of Dublin

Day 4: Drive to Cong County, Mayo. Spend few hours there. Drive to galway in the evening and spend the night there.

Day 5: Drive to Connemara National Park in the morning. Afternoon, considering Kylemore Abbey or Glengowla mines, stay a night in Clifden

Day 6: Drive towards The Burren, Cliffs of Moher, stay in Doolin

Day 7: Drive to Dingle, Connor Pass

Day 8: Stay in Dingle, Slea Head drive? Sight seeing

Day 9: Fly out to London from Kerry airport

Your feedback is most appreciated! Thank you :)

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