Ireland Trip Planning

I hope everyone had a great weekend and a Happy St. Patrick’s Day.  We went to a birthday party on Saturday and had a great time at Giggleberry Fair.  We had never been to Giggleberry’s before, but we had to drag both of our boys out against their will in order to enjoy pizza and cake with the birthday girl so they clearly had a good time.

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Speaking of all things Irish, our next big family trip is to Ireland in late May.  It is actually an extended family trip with Russ’s dad and brother tagging along.  Let’s just say that I keep reminding myself of the saying, ‘what doesn’t kill you, only makes you stronger.’  Russ’s grandparents grew up in Ireland, but Russ’s dad has never been there or even left the country for that matter.  To that end, I am happy that he finally decided to hop on a plane and meet some of his relatives.  I tried to convince Russ to make it a Curley family affair and graciously volunteered to stay home with the kids while he toured the Emerald Isle with his folks, but Russ wasn’t down with that option.  Because I have never been to Ireland, I reluctantly agreed and sketched out a rough itinerary for our trip.

The Curley’s are from County Galway and some of my father-in-law’s first cousins still live in the same town (and even the same house) where his dad grew up.  Since they live in western Ireland, it made more sense to fly into Shannon and focus on the west coast.  Our preliminary itinerary includes the following:

Day 1: Meet the Curley’s

Day 2: Spend the morning with the Curley’s, drive to Connemara at naptime

Day 3: Connemara, including a visit to Kylemore Abbey

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Days 4-5: Explore the Burren and visit the Cliffs of Moher, possibly take a day trip to Inisheer

cliffs of moher

Days 6 -9: Dingle

Dingle Harbour (2) Dingle2c

Day 10: fly home

It turns out that the in-laws are not down with this plan and want to go their own way after visiting the family in Kiltormer.  Since it is likely that neither one will go back to Ireland again, they want to see Dublin, Belfast, and Galway.  I would like to visit all three of those cities at some point as well, but I don’t think our kids would appreciate traveling large distances to go from city to city.  I also think part of the appeal of a trip to Ireland is driving around the scenic countryside and staying in B&Bs.  The good news about splitting up is the fact that we can rent a small car instead of an SUV, which would have been a challenge to drive on those small, winding country roads.  It also means less pressure to do things that wouldn’t interest our kids at all, like wait in line to see the Book of Kells or attend daily mass.  I have a feeling that our two little leprechauns will want to spend most of their time running around outside looking for rainbows and a pot of gold.

Since we’re still planning our itinerary, does anyone have any suggestions?

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6 thoughts on “Ireland Trip Planning

  1. Southern Ireland was a great place to visit! Plenty of open space for running around & chasing rainbows. 🙂 I would also allow extra time for driving, especially with 2 lil’ boys. You’re right- the roads are quite narrow in spots, particularly in the country-side. We drove much slower, than anticipated…

    Have fun!

      • Yes, I’m sure you will love it! For me, the biggest enjoyment came from just taking in the scenery. Places that stand out though, would be (in no particular order): Dunquin, The Blasket Islands, Kinsale, and driving along the country-side. Dublin is great for people watching, and picture-taking. Hope this helps! 🙂

  2. I would give anything to go to Ireland! It so beautiful there and sounds magical. I have family living there and sometimes I just want to jump on a plane and take full advantage of their household. Apparently you can see all of Ireland in a short amount of time. Beautiful pictures!

    • Hi Tiffany – you should definitely start planning a trip, especially if you have family in Ireland! It seems like a fairly inexpensive place to visit compared to a lot of European countries because there are a lot of very affordable B&Bs. In some places it’s actually hard to find B&Bs that have negative TripAdvisor reviews. Let us know if you do buy a plane ticket and need any suggestions. Just checked out your blog – love the fashion posts!

      • Thanks so much for checking out my blog! I will defnitely let you know if I am ever heading over to Ireland. I love your blog as well, evrytime I read a post, it makes me want to leave everything, pack a bag and jump on a jet plane to some breathtaking destination.

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