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Old 01-01-06, 07:36 PM   #1
KDB
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Prepackaged cycling tours of Ireland

Does anyone have any experience with any of the companies that offer complete cycling tour packages of Ireland? My wife and I are thinking of it as a possible 25th anniversary trip (summer 2007). A google search turns up a fair number of companies and options vs. doing it all on your own.

Direct experience and recommnedations would be very helpful.

Thanks,
KDB
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Old 01-02-06, 03:08 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by KDB
Does anyone have any experience with any of the companies that offer complete cycling tour packages of Ireland?
I've not been to Ireland, but had a tremendous bike trip in Scotland with Bike Vermont (www.bikevermont.com); they also offer an Ireland cycling package described at www.bikeireland.com (a walking tour is another option). Their standards for accommodations, routing (away from busy traffic, in the beautiful areas), and just generally being encouraging and having a friendly attitude (even in downpours) are quite good.
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Old 01-05-06, 03:06 AM   #3
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You need to learn how to show your wife a good time on her anniversay.

Scenery is nice in Ireland, but if you're travelling all the way from the States to ride you should go somewhere with more dependable weather in Southern Europe.
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Old 01-05-06, 04:22 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pauld
You need to learn how to show your wife a good time on her anniversay.

Scenery is nice in Ireland, but if you're travelling all the way from the States to ride you should go somewhere with more dependable weather in Southern Europe.
Well, that's kinda bunk. KDB is asking about Ireland, not So.Europe or "dependable" weather, or "learning to show your wife a good time".WTF? They WANT TO GO TO IRELAND.

That aside, I've been to Ireland a half dozen times, never by bike so I can't say anything about the tour companies or cycling there. However, having walked/hitchhiked the roads from Cork to Mullingar, and Dublin to Connemara, I can say this, bring rain gear. if you're after schedules, itineraries and "a plan", I'm sure the packages will be great. My own experience is that Ireland is best taken by simply going where the road takes you. I've always felt welcome and comfortable where ever I ended the day, be it a hotel or camping in someones pasture-land.If you're willing for the adventure, I'd say just lay out a rough sketch of what you want to see(remember, it's a fairly small island)and wing it. I've been considering Ireland for a tour myself and picked up a book called 100 road tours of Ireland(or something close to that) it lays out several "must see" sights, distances, and terrain. PM me, I can give you exact title, author, etc.
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Old 01-05-06, 01:06 PM   #5
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I used www.irondonkey.com in 2004 and was very happy. We did the self guided tour of Northern Ireland where our luggage was transported for us to the next B&B.

Hope that helps.

Thanks
Kevin
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Old 01-06-06, 10:22 AM   #6
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I would suggest going in the fall if that's a possibility, even early winter. The weather in ireland is totally unpredictable year round. When I went a couple years ago in December the weather was gorgeous while my friends that went in July had terrible rain, sleet, and cold. The main reason I suggest this is that there are far fewer tourbusses on the road that time of year and fewer tourists at the various destinations. If you work off of the voucher program for your b&b's (this program is excellent) you'll have your pick of the places to stay in the off season as well. Just an idea. I'm envious of your trip because Ireland is one of the nicest places I've ever been (and I say this after having all of my belongings stolen the last day in Dublin).
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