Travelling to Ireland
As Ireland is an island nation, travelling to Ireland means arriving by either air or sea. This section intends to provide you with all the information required so as to make your journey here as pleasant as possible.
If you intend to arrive by air, you will enter the country through one of four airports. Your point of departure will largely determine the airport at which you will arrive.
For visitors arriving on flights directly from/through North America either Shannon or Dublin airports will be your destination. Shannon Airport due to its proximity to Cork & Kerry is the most ideal destination as it is only 2 hours away by car. Dublin Airport is Ireland's biggest airport, serving the North Atlantic routes, Middle and Far Eastern routes and European routes. Regular shuttle flights are available between Dublin and both Cork and Kerry Airports. Cork Airport which is
just outside Cork City is the best destination choice available. Cork Airport can be reached from many European destinations as well as from all over the world if you change flights at either London or Dublin. Cork Airport is, at the most, just two hours away from where you intend to stay in the Cork / Kerry region. Your final choice of arrival airport is Kerry Airport which is ideal for those who want short check-in/arrival times. Kerry Airport can be reached by flights from the U.K., or Dusseldorf. Many private companies such as offer very attractive alternatives for airport transfers and inland journeys.
TRAVELLING BY SEA
If you intend to arrive by sea, which is ideal for those who wish to use their own car, there is a choice of 3 ports of arrival. The closest port of arrival is Ringaskiddy which is just outside Cork City. Ringaskiddy serves Swansea in Wales and Le Havre, Cherbourg, Roscoff and St. Malo in France. Next Rosslare which is located in the south-east corner of Ireland is suitable for those who prefer a shorter sea journey. From here Fishguard in Wales is just 90 minutes away by Stena Sea Lynx. Standard Ferries (Irish Ferries) also serve Fishguard and Pembroke in Wales, and Cherbourg and Roscoff in France. Finally Dun Laoghaire just outside Dublin links with Holyhead in North Wales for visitors coming from the Midlands and Northern England.
TRAVELLING BY RAIL
If you have arrived in Ireland by air or sea at Dublin / Dun Laoghaire or by sea at Rosslare, a comfortable way to travel onward to Cork or Kerry is by train (Iarnród Éireann).
A taxi (cab) from Dublin Airport to Hueston Station will cost approx. € 15 (US $16) and from Dun Laoghaire Ferry port to Hueston station approx. € 20 (US $21). A regular bus service AIRLINK also runs from the airport which costs approx. € 5 (US $5). There is no direct bus link from Dun Laoghaire, so you take the DART (Suburban rail service) to Pearse St. Station in Dublin city centre and then the No. 90 bus to Hueston Station. This costs the same as the journey from the airport.
Trains leave Hueston station regularly for Cork Kent station all day. The travel time is approx. 3 hours and costs € 46 (US $50) return. NOTE: A single ticket costs the same as a return ticket. From Rosslare, one train leaves daily directly to Cork via Limerick Junction which costs € 33 (US $35) Time: 3 hours. Otherwise you will have to go via Dublin - changing from Pearse St. station to Houston Station (No. 90 bus) - which costs € 43 (US $45) and takes approx. 6 hours.
Kent station in Cork is less than 5 minutes walk from the city centre. It is also possible to change trains at Mallow to get to Millstreet, Killarney and Tralee. For Killarney and Tralee this will cost a small bit extra. Full timetables are posted at all stations.
TRAVELLING BY BUS & COACH
Travelling by bus (Bus Eireann) is a cheap way to get around Ireland and a great way to meet people. Often very lively conversations will develop during your journey, with plenty of advice given for you stay in Ireland. The Dublin Bus Navigator is useful for finding your way around our capital city.
The cheapest way to travel by bus is to get a RAMBLER TICKET available from most bus stations. These give unlimited travel on all Scheduled services - excluding Day Tours. They cost as follows:
3 days (out of 8 consecutive days) € 36 (US $38)
8 days out of 15 consecutive days) € 86 (US $90)
15 days out of 30 consecutive days) € 125 (US $130)
If you are travelling as a group of 10 people or more, then why not hire a coach for your stay in Ireland. This way you will be chauffeured day and night to you chosen destinations in safety and with no worries about who drinks and who does the driving!
TRAVELLING BY CAR
For complete travel independence a car is your best choice whether you bring your own or hire one. The roads in Ireland are uncluttered and once off the main National primary routes, roads are considered crowded if you see another car going in the same direction and one coming against you at the same time. For more details on driving in Ireland click here. For details on car hire companies and rates click here. Generally a small family car will average 40 miles per gallon (14Km / litre).
NOTE: A gallon here is larger than a US gallon. Petrol costs approx. € 0.84 (US 87 cents) per litre ---- € 3.85 (US $4) per gallon. All service stations supply fuel in litres. Diesel is slightly cheaper.
For those who want to travel at a leisurely pace and enjoy the fresh air, Ireland is ideal cycling country. Bicycles can be hired nationwide and will cost approx. € 10 (US $11) per day / € 40 (US $42) per week. Bikes are all top of the range mountain bikes and pannier bags can also be hired. Contacts are as follows:
Dublin.....C. Harding, O'Connell St. Bridge - Tel: +353-1-8732455
Shannon / limerick.....Emerald Cycles, 1 Patrick St. Limerick - Tel: +353-61-416983
Cork.....Kilgrew's Cycles, 6/7 Kyle Street, Cork - Tel: +353-21-4276255
Rothar Cycles.....11 Magazine Road, Cork - Tel: +353-21-4313133
Bikes can be returned to over 90 Dealer's Nationwide.
Bicycles can also be hired at most of the towns listed within the Cork / Kerry region.
Hitchiking is perfectly safe in Ireland, for those on a low budget this is an ideal way to get around and meet people. If you intend hitchhiking for the first time it is advisable to get as comfortable a pair of walking boots and backpack as you can afford before you come. It will pay in the long-term as who wants a sore back or feet when you are supposed to be enjoying yourself on holidays. Getting a lift is quite easy, especially if you have the flag of your country sewn onto the back of your backpack and displayed so drivers can see it easily. Many local people in Ireland hitchhike so you will often have competition at the best locations for a lift which is usually between the 30m.p.h. and 40m.p.h. signs on the road leaving town.
NOTE: Prices shown are approximate and are subject to change without notice