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Ireland Honeymoon--What Must We See/Eat/Do?

Discussion in 'Bride World Wide & Grooms Grooves' started by Haven, Feb 20, 2008.

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  1. Haven
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    by Haven » Feb 20, 2008

    I think I''ve posted this topic before but I can''t find it when I search my past threads.


    ANYWAY, we''re back to planning a honeymoon in Ireland. I''m so excited!!!! We''ll probably stay in Dublin because Starwood has two hotels there and my best friend has so graciously offered to save her employee rates for us to use. That being said--what should we do? Where should we go? Suggestions, recommendations, warnings? Day trips? Weekend trips?


    We''re planning on going for about two weeks. If I can convince FI that we need three, though, we''ll be there a bit longer.


    Thanks in advance for your help!

     
  2. TravelingGal
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    by TravelingGal » Feb 20, 2008
    Fantastic choice!

    Deco went to Ireland on her honeymoon and posted this thread asking for help. Lots of us put our 2 cents on that thread. She also posted her thoughts upon her return and some great pics.
     
  3. brazen_irish_hussy
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    by brazen_irish_hussy » Feb 20, 2008
    I was living in Ireland with my FI when he proposed. It is such a diverse country so having you describe what kinds of things you like to do and see might help. The shopping is best on Grafton St, but some of the most important history took place on O''conell street, etc. There are ancient monuments and beautiful mansions and exceptional scenery.
    For food, seafood is always good because it is just so fresh.
    If you ever need an escape while you are in Dublin, go to the Iveagh gardens. They are next to St Stephens Green so they are central, they are so beautiful and tourists don''t know it exists so it is always so peaceful.
    Tell us what you like and we will all help.
    The picture is of when we got engaged at the rock of Cashel in Tipperary. I would be happy to share pictures with you, we were there for almost 6 months.

    Tipperary.jpg
     
  4. zoebartlett
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    by zoebartlett » Feb 20, 2008
    We were there three years ago (or was it 4?) and we divided our time between the east coast and the west coast. We did spend most of our time on the west coast though. We were gone for 11 days.

    I know you''re going to be in Dublin but if you get a chance, definitely go to Galway. It took us 3 hours to there (although everyone said it would take us 1.5 -- it doesn''t). It''s the best small city! If you do go, make sure and go to Siamsa http://homepage.eircom.net/~siamsa/ -- it''s fabulous! My FI loved a restaurant called Lemongrass so much we went a few times. I think it''s thai but I''m not positive. I can''t remember.

    One day we took a drive through Connemara (sp?) and went to Kylemore Abbey, which is beautiful. We went to the Cliffs of Mohr and while it''s nice, it didn''t impress me as much as I was expecting. The Ballyvara House is a great little hotel near there -- it was a nice change from the B&Bs we stayed at. While the B&Bs were fine, there''s not much privacy (which we knew before going but still...).

    We wanted to see the Aran Islands as well, so we went to Inish Moore (I know I''m not spelling that correctly). We saw a great show there called Ragus (with an accent over the U, I think, if that helps with pronunciation).

    On the eastern part of Ireland, we did all the typcially touristy things in and near Dublin. We also drove through Wicklow but the roads made my stomach queasy.

    We had wanted to go to the Ring of Kerry and the Kinsale area but it would have been too much.

    Are you flying in and out of Dublin? We flew into Dublin and out of Shannon. That was nice because we could slowly make our way across Ireland and stop wherever we wanted. We weren''t back-tracking -- we kept moving forward, if that makes sense.

    On our last night there we went to Bunratty Castle. It''s super touristy and I would have skipped it had I known how hokey is would be. We toured the castle and the grounds and then stayed for the feast. I thought it was really overrated but my FI enjoyed himself.

    I love Ireland -- it''s one of our favorite places and we plan on going back some day.
     
  5. Haven
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    by Haven » Feb 20, 2008
    Thank you for the tips! I really appreciate the thread link, TGal.

    Brazen--what a great photo, it captures such a special moment.

    Okay, we like:
    - History
    - Culture
    - Meeting people when we travel
    - Nature
    - Animals
    - Food
    - Hiking/biking/physical activity

    Thanks again!
     
  6. zoebartlett
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    by zoebartlett » Feb 20, 2008
    Okay, so I know I posted a bunch of stuff about the western part of Ireland and you''re staying in the Dublin area. You had mentioned day trips and although those places would be hard to experience in just a day trip, I thought I''d mention them. I wasn''t sure if you have any plans to stay elsewhere in the country.
     
  7. brazen_irish_hussy
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    by brazen_irish_hussy » Feb 20, 2008
    My personal favorite place for natural beauty is Sligo. In particular, the area around Lough Gill. Some of my favorite poems, "the stolen child" and "the isle of Inishfree" by Yeats was written about the area and it was just as magical as the poems.

    My favorite for culture and "refined" beauty is Castletown house outside of Dublin. If you go, read the "aristocrats" book first. It is written about the four sisters tied to the house and is truely facinating. http://www.castletown.ie/

    Not to snub other parts of Ireland since the people are so friendly, but the best place we found to met people was in county cork.
    You mentioned animals. I didn''t get there, but our friends told us Fota Island in Cork was great. There is an old mansion on the island and a wild animal park with antelope and kangaroos running around.

    If you are going to see a lot of historic attractions, you should consider this card, http://www.heritageireland.ie/. It saved us a lot of money.

    If you don''t mind braving time with tourists, Newgrange is a truely amazing monument from the stone age.

    I didn''t spend as much time on the wonderful western coast, so some other fine ladies will have to help with that.


    There is so much to do in Dublin I can''t begin to make recommendations.
     
  8. thekinglives
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    by thekinglives » Feb 20, 2008
    Hello Haven. Great choice for a honeymoon (I''m a bit biased though [​IMG])

    Some ideas:

    TCD for the Book of Kells, Brian Boru''s harp (national emblem) and
    the Samuel Beckett theatre for a play or three (other theatres: the Abbey,
    the Gate). Kilmainham Gaol and the GPO for 1916-related history. The Irish
    Writer''s museum on Parnell Square. Joyce''s tower out in Sandycove (setting
    of first chapter of Ulysses). Oscar Wilde''s house on Merrion Square (now
    housing the American college). Shaw''s house on Synge street.

    Pub culture is a big part of the culture [​IMG], look for the old-faceted, non-trendy
    types and you''ll have a bigger chance to meet the locals (although Dublin is
    awash with recent immigrants this weather). There are more than 900 scattered
    in all directions, as prevalent as churches.

    As Brazen Irish Hussy (lol!) says , it''s impossible to get the real deal across. I''d
    recommend spending a week in Dublin though, and maybe heading out to
    Glendalough in Wickow for a day trip and then onto the West. The most
    gentlepeople of Ireland are to be found outside of Dublin. Best scenery
    imho: West Cork, Kerry, Galway, Mayo, Sligo and Donegal.

    Also, this website might be useful:
    http://www.visitdublin.com/seeanddo/historicsites/listing.aspx?id=247&Page=1&pp=10&offset=2

    HTH [​IMG]
     
  9. bee*
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    by bee* » Feb 21, 2008
    woohoo!! You won''t regret coming over here. If you''re spending two weeks though I would probably travel around a bit rather than spend the whole time in Dublin. I live in Dublin and there are tons of things to do however to get a full feel of the country I''d travel outside the city a bit also.

    In Dublin:
    Grafton Street and surrounding areas
    Christ Church Cathedral.
    Take in the ringing of the bells at St Patricks Cathedral.
    Kilmainham Gaol (this is my favourite tourist attraction in the whole of Dublin-it''s excellent).
    Phoenix Park-either go here for a walk and see all the deer or you can visit Dublin Zoo. Our second baby elephant was born over the weekend.
    After having a drink or two, do the Viking Splash Tours. My friends and I went on this one afternoon and it was brilliant.
    Go to Trinity Collge and see the Book of Cells.
    The Guinness Storehouse is a fun place to spend an afternoon and you get your free pint at the end of it (can''t remember if it''s one or two that you get-it''s been a while since I''ve been there). There''s the Jameson Distillery if you don''t like Guinness.
    Have a walk around Temple bar. There are a few decent restaurants there however I wouldn''t drink in the pubs there as the prices are a lot higher than outside Templebar and if it''s a weekend it can get rowdy with hens and stags.
    My mother used to take us to this place every couple of months when we were young-number 29 Fitzwilliam Street-it''s an old period house done up as it was in it''s heyday. I always enjoyed visiting here and the cafe at the end has the most amazing cakes.

    Go to Glendalough for the day-it''s amazing to just wander around and walk over to the round tower. I adore Glendalough. It takes about an hour to get there and there are plenty of buses leaving from the city centre.
    I would also recommend taking a dart (our trains) out to Dun Laoghaire. I work out here and it''s the most beautiful little town on the seafront. You can walk the pier, get a Teddys icecream (they''re called a 99 and they''re delicious-the nicest I''ve ever had). There''s always a queue for them. Also if you like burgers, there''s a new restaurant there called Real Gourmet Burger and they really are delicious and worth the wait for a seat. While out there, you can get the dart a little bit further and get out at Dalkey Village or Killiney Beach. Dalkey is one of the most picturesque villages. Bono''s house is a couple of minute walk from Killiney beach also so you might be lucky and see him [​IMG]


    If you''re going outside Dublin, definitely visit Galway. It''s a great city and the actually city centre is really compact so you wouldn''t need a car. You could go out to Salthill for the day also.
    Kerry is the most beautiful county ever-the views are to die for. Tralee is great however I adore Dingle and we go there for a week every summer. It''s a bit touristy but so beautiful that it doesn''t matter that there''s quite a few other people admiring them with you. Mayo is also a beautiful county also.

    For nightlife-I hate nightclubs so can''t give you any advice on which ones to go to but I think that the dandelion club seems to be very popular these days. It''s right beside St Stephens Green Shopping centre. There''s the smallest Pub in Dublin on Dawson Street which serves the most amazing Guinness. There are also plenty more bars and restaurants on Dawson Street. One of my fave restaurants is Yamamori-the most delicious food is served here-mmmmm. Also Fallon & Byrnes have a beautiful restaurant above their food market and it''s a very romantic place to spend an evening without totally breaking the budget. For an uber pricey night out, Shanahans on the Green is the main one or you can go down to the Merrion hotel (about a 5 minute walk from St Stephens Green) and eat at their restaurant there-it''s delicious.
    The Mint bar at the Westin hotel have a great Swing band playing there every Saturday night which are great to listen to and if you want to go outside the main city centre a bit, the Ice Bar at the Four Seasons is also a great place to spend an evening. Your FI will probably like the PorterHouse for all it''s beer that it has, and also the Bull and Castle Pub opposite Christ Church Cathedral has a new beer garden upstairs that''s done up like a German Beer Hall which has lot of different beers served in Steins.
    That''s all I can think of at the moment but if you need to know anything else just give me a shout.
     
  10. ktkakes
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    by ktkakes » Feb 21, 2008
    im so exicted to hear that someone else is planning a honeymoon in ireland.. we are going for two weeks spending t he first three days in dublin then going on a tour.. t he company we are using is cietours they have a website. we are going on the pub/folk tour.. i cant freakin wait..
    actually i cant wait to just be away.... 5 weeks and counting.....

    when is your wedding date? if you have plenty of time after we go i can give you all the details!!!

    [​IMG]
     
  11. Haven
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    by Haven » Feb 25, 2008
    Thank you so much for all of this wonderful information! I am so very grateful.

    Now, here''s another concern--upon hearing that we''re planning an Ireland honeymoon, one of FI''s good friends responded with shock and said that he couldn''t think of a more boring place to go. I would generally ignore such a response, but the friend is European, extremely well traveled (as in, he''s been nearly everywhere I can think of) and he knows us quite well.

    Am I off my rocker to worry about this? I''ve never heard such a thing about Ireland.
     
  12. brazen_irish_hussy
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    by brazen_irish_hussy » Feb 25, 2008
    It depends on what you are looking for. My single friends told me the scene in Dublin was not as good as other major European cities so if he is single, that would do it.
    There are a lot of fun pubs but not as many trendy "clubs" like the continent but I liked singing Celtic Symphony off key with 50 of my new closest friends a lot better than rubbing against sweaty bodies in a more standard club.

    Outside of Dublin, much of the charm is the natural beauty so if he doesn''t find that interesting, he may find that boring. I have friends from NY who think Colorado is boring because there aren''t shows and stuff each night. Many Coloradans I know think NY is boring because there is such a limit on physical activies that are so previlent here.

    I lived there for 5 months and never got bored.
     
  13. Haven
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    by Haven » Feb 25, 2008
    Thank you, brazen. We really enjoy nature, and we live in a big city so we definitely don''t need to fly hours away to go to clubs at night.
     
  14. bee*
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    by bee* » Feb 26, 2008
    I agree with Brazen in that it depends on what you''re looking for. There is plenty to see and do in Dublin but outside of the capital, a lot of it is quieter but beautiful. I''ve just booked my two weeks in Kerry over the weekend and I cannot wait. It will be mainly walking, fishing (for D), lunching and drinking in the pubs etc. It''s beautiful.

    If you are after trendy clubs, we do have quite a few of them: the main ones are Lilli Bordellos, Kylies, Raynards, Cafe en Seine and pretty much most of Dawson Street have lovely bars and restaurants. Pubs would be more of the scene though in Ireland.
     
  15. julabean
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    by julabean » Feb 26, 2008
    I totally concur with Bee about Dingle. The Ring of Kerry is GORGEOUS. I was only in Ireland for 10 days a few years ago and let me tell you, there is not a prettier place ... like anywhere. We stayed outside of Dingle and it was just so lovely. Good music, good pubs, good scenery. To me, it didn''t get any more Irish than the 3 days I spent there.

    For some fascinating history, go to Newgrange. It''s...north of Dublin, I believe. Think Stonehenge, only with burial mounds instead of standing stones and one of the BEST museums I''ve seen at an archaeological site. Website is here.

    If you''re into castles, getting an Irish Heritage card at the first Heritage site you stop at is well worth the money. We got such a deal on those and averaged only a couple Euros admission for each castle we stopped at.
     
  16. GolfGirl2008
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    by GolfGirl2008 » Feb 28, 2008
    I was born and raised for half my childhood in Ireland (Dublin) and second everything said above except what people have left out is the amazing Northern Ireland. Belfast is one of the most beautiful cities in Europe and shouldn''t be missed. Belfast can be done in a day from Dublin if time is pressed. Other places not mentioned are the National Gallery of Ireland, Powerscourt House & Gardens, walk the Dun Laoghaire pier (I totally agree that Teddy''s icecreams are just yum!!), and also Howth and Malahide are lovely boating towns on the northside. Go to Johnny Foxes pub in the mountains for some good fun, but the roads can be treacherous to get there. Other places outside Dublin are the rock of Cashel, Giants Causeway, Killarney, The Burren, Doolin, Dingle, Cobh (the port of emigration at time of famine). Enjoy your time, it''s a magical place.
     
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