The Best of Ireland: What to see, Where to stay & How to do it for CHEAP!

I had an absolute BLAST in Ireland! From Dublin to Kilarney, Ennis to Galway, Inis Mór to Derry and Belfast, I saw so many amazing sights and met so many great people! I wrapped up my trip with a week back in Dublin, and I officially want to live there!
(Seriously, I looked into it. If someone can find a way for me to get a working visa in Dublin, LET ME KNOW! I’d be there in a heartbeat!!!)

Here is a compilation of all my favorites of Ireland, including my top picks of where to stay and my overall final opinion of touring with Shamrocker Adventures!

Where to Stay:

Rowan Tree Hostel, Ennis
Best food, hands down! Every hostel with a restaurant claims to have the best food… but this one is the real deal! Check out this seafood tagliatelle I had! And the rooms?! Try to book one on the third floor… I had a huge bed, a balcony and an amazing view of the city and river below!

Kinlay House, Galway
Out of all the stops on my tour, the most fun, or craic, I had (besides Dublin) was in Galway. Think of Dublin’s little brother, and you’ve got Galway. Kinlay house was amazing, and the social area was one of the best we had on the whole trip. I got a little lost in the streets at night and in the rain trying to find my way back, but I blame the Guinness… this spot is in a great location and close to heaps of pubs!

Neptunes Hostel, Killarney
Killarney is a small town, and we were located very close to all the action including the Killarney national park. It’s an easy, accessible walk to Ross castle, which sits on a lake inside the park surrounded by wildlife (we did a little deer watching while we were there).

Finally, Shamrocker Adventures. I cannot say enough amazing things about my time traveling with them! My guide, Dave (Disco Dave, that is!), is by far one of the most amazing people I have ever met! He’s incredibly smart (he seems to know EVERYTHING about Ireland!) and he went out of his way to ensure each and every person on that tour was having a good time; something that other tour leaders at other companies don’t always do. We did not waste our days away on a bus or traveling from one point to another; we had numerous stops throughout the day and didn’t skip over anything along the way.

We visited Blarney castle and kissed the stone, then it was on to Killarney for a night of drinking and story telling form a local Irish man named Pa. Then, we went to my personal favorite, Dingle, and drove through the Dingle Peninsula. We spent two nights in Galway, which was phenomenal, including a day trip to Inis Mór, the largest of the Aran Islands. We took an award-winning walking tour through the medieval city of Derry, and stood in the very steps of the infamous Bloody Sunday massacre. A stop at the Cliffs of Moher was equally as amazing as our stop at Giant’s Causeway, which locals believe is the remnants of a bridge a giant built. From moon walking in the Burren region, to surviving a walk across Carrick-a-rede, a swaying rope bridge, Dave made sure we had fun but still took away knowledge of Ireland’s turbulent past through stories of the potato famine and visits to memorials. Also on the list, visits to cemeteries, the Pól na bron tomb and Monasterboice monastery to see some of the most sought after high crosses, along with searching for fairies in a fairy fort.

Price-wise, Shamrocker Adventures is totally affordable with 3, 5 and 7 day tour packages available. Note to the wise though: those who left our tour day 5 missed out on some of the best activities offered in the 7 day package, such as Giant’s Causeway, Carrick-a-Rede, the Derry walking tour and of course, our last night drinking in Dublin!

I cannot recommend Shamrocker enough!

While my tour and accommodations were all sponsored, all opinions, like always, are my own.

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About The Roaming Bean (109 Articles)
You're probably wondering what the heck is a "Roaming Bean"... Given that I am clearly not a Bean, and my name is Jen, what gives with this Bean thing, right? A friend of mine called me JenBean as a child, and it kinda stuck. Actually, it really stuck... even my license plate says Jenbean. And seeing as I have this grand lust to wander the world, The Roaming Bean seemed suitable. I've changed my career path more times than I have my underwear (minus all the times I've gone commando).... from animating, to forensic pathology, to international business, to fashion marketing and even to my wonderful and favorite of the bunch, degree in culinary arts, nothing kept my attention. Nothing was fun enough to do every day for the rest of my life. I mean, even though I cooked for celebrities in the heart of Hollywood, CA, why the hell would I want to sweat my ass off in a ridiculously HOT kitchen for most of the day and go home smelling like beef and onions? And the chef hat?? Do you know what that did to my hair?? Enter traveling.... The rainy day I descended down the tower of Notre Dame in Paris, gripping on to the railing for dear life so not to slip and tumble to an early death from the torrential down pour that was causing a small flood in the stairwell, my life changed. When I safely made it to the ground, legs shaky from an apparent lack of fitness it requires to walk up and down 387 steep stairs, I realized my hands were stained a delightful copper color from the rusted hand rail I had so dearly clung to. Desperate to get the icky stuff off my supple hands, and no running water in sight, I did what any other hopeless idiot would have done: I washed my hands in the nearest Parisian gutter. It was that moment that changed my life... I threw away my hair dryer, my rolling luggage and my dignity. I let my hair go natural, I bought a back pack and I CAMPED through Europe for a month and a half. Yes my friends, I crossed over into a savage traveling beast. Ok, a lot of people travel that way. But I didn't. And I'm so incredibly thankful for that rainy day in Paris that made me realize the world is a pretty sweet place. That realization led me on a quest; a quest to get out there, see things, soak up some local culture and eat my way around the world (with minimal food-related illnesses, such as but not limited to raging diarrhea).

4 Comments on The Best of Ireland: What to see, Where to stay & How to do it for CHEAP!

  1. Well as ‘Disco Dave’s’ mother I have to agree with you! Lol! Seriously though, sounds like ye all had a great time – I sometimes envy him his job of travelling round the country in the company of some lovely people and having, as he would say himself, ‘the craic’!

  2. great report and pictures from Ireland – Good to see that you enjoyed yourself. Its great when visitors to the country leave with such happy memories. Thanks Derek

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