I am a USA-based spirits journalist planning a QUICK trip to Dublin at the end of this month. I managed to eke this trip out on the heels of a longer UK-trip. I have never been to Ireland before and so do not have a great idea of what is realistic to squeeze into my schedule. If someone there could help me determine if this is overly ambitious, please do so.
OPTION #1 Itinerary
We will arrive at the end of day on Tuesday 29 November 2011. My wife and I intend to go to the Guinness factory that evening (already booked) for the final tour of the day. Our current thinking is to drive down to Co. Cork that night and begin early Wednesday morning (30 November) at the Midleton Distillery. My thinking was that we would then make our way back north and visit the Kilbeggan Distillery in Co. Westmeath, and then head back to Dublin to catch the final tour of the Old Jameson Distillery in Dublin. The next morning (Thursday 1 December) we would drive north to the Cooley Distillery in Dundalk, Co. Louth for an early start, returning to Dublin directly afterwards, spending the rest of the day in Dublin. We fly out very early the next day (Friday 2 December).
I am in the process of organizing media visits for Midleton, Kilbeggan, Jameson (in Dublin), and Cooley. My only question: would this likely make for an overly ambitious itinerary?
OPTION #2 Itinerary
As itinerary #1 (above) except that we would skip one of the distillery visits (either Midleton or Kilbeggan or Cooley). If we skip Midleton, we will likley skip Co. Cork on this trip.
Obviously, we would like to see/do more than just whiskey if possible. So, given all of the above, and given the time of year and how early it gets dark, and given the roads/road conditions, which is the safer bet? Option #1 or option #2. We hope this will be the first of many visits to Ireland, but this is all we have to play with for now.
Any guidance or advice folks here might offer would be very greatly appreciated.
I hope you enjoy your visit to Ireland and I hope on your next visit you bring lots and lots of your friends with you. ;-)
In my opinion, while your first option is manageable Im not sure you would be able to spend long enough at your chosen sites to get the true value of each one.
If you do intend to return to Ireland in the future I would suggest on this occasion that you confine your visit to the Leinster area (Dublin, Westmeath, Louth ) and when you return make sure to give yourself plenty of time to visit the rest of Ireland.(especially the West)
Sorry I missed your questions on your Dublin trip - hope my website helps for next time - Dublin Visitors http://www.dublin1.webs.com
Your message, and all details you enter below, will be published to the message board for others to read and reply to.