Time traveling back to Summer 2018, I’m with Oldest in Ireland. After pretending to be part of a medieval adventure with Game of Thrones Tours, it was time for some real, 2018-style adventure: driving in Ireland. That’s right, I’m getting behind the wheel, on the “wrong” side of the road.
First up: I heeded the advice of the Tripadvisor forums, and rented the smallest car possible. I think a well-fed horse might have been bigger.
I hired Corporate Transfers to take us from our Dublin lodging to the Hertz Dublin City Centre South location on Circular road; their Transfer & Pilot Service includes a driver who we would follow out of Dublin city onto the main highways. I have had the pleasure of meeting Corporate Transfers’ proprietor, Fintan Murray, on previous Ireland visits.
The Hertz location was packed and although we had a reservation, we waited in line for a good hour, while Dave from Corporate Transfers waited very patiently outside. If you rent a car in Ireland, be prepared for long waits: many people do not do their research and do not understand the insurance options for driving in Ireland (hint: buy it all), which lengthens the process. Finally, off we went toward Killarney, following Dave around busy city streets (eek!) until we reached the M7, a major, divided highway where I felt very comfortable driving. If it’s your first time driving on the left, I highly recommend this service, as navigating tight one-way city streets is unlikely to be an easy baptism.
The drive from Dublin to Killarney takes a little over 3 hours. The drive was surprisingly uneventful, and we were thrilled to find a tiny parking spot, to fit our tiny car, right in front of our hotel, the International Hotel Killarney. This was our biggest lodging splurge of the trip; I figured that after 9 days of traveling, we were due for a full service hotel experience. The hotel is well-located in the center of town, and we found the beds to be extremely comfortable.
After checking in, we began to make our way into Killarney’s afternoon/night life. It was the weekend of the annual Ring of Kerry charity bike race, so Killarney, as the largest town on the Ring, was full of very fit revelers. We spent most of the evening in and out of O’Connor’s and Tatler Jack’s – the, uh, fuzzy/crooked nature of these photos hopefully assures my readers that I was having a GOOD time.
Killarney is an excellent base for touring beautiful southwestern Ireland: the Ring of Kerry, the Dingle Peninsula, and other beautiful landscapes. While not a large city, there are plenty of lodging and dining options from hostels and pubs to upscale resorts and 5 star dining. And look: other Cubs fans visit here too! Hi Dave & Alex! Go Cubs!