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gkrnjlr Sep 13, 16 5:40 am

Edinburgh and Dublin 2 days each?
 
My sister and I are going to be traveling to London and the Lake District next year. We are talking about adding on Edinburgh and Dublin at the end of the trip. I know 2 days is not much - but is it do-able to do a fast tour of these cities (guided tour, possibly?)?

We have a few extra days in the trip that we have to play with and we've toyed with the idea of 1) day trip from London to Stonehenge, Bath, etc.; 2) Day trip from London to Paris.

Any input is appreciated.

Thank you.

London_traveller Sep 13, 16 6:02 am

Both cities are doable for two days each. That's enough time to get a good feel for the city and do a tour. I would personally say two days for Dublin is plenty, while two days in Edinburgh will feel a bit squeezed but is perfectly fine.

You will be doing a fair bit of travel though, by the looks of it!

If you're travelling to the Lake District then carrying on from there by train to Edinburgh is straightforward. Flights from Edinburgh to Dublin (and then Dublin back to London) are also easy and not that expensive.

As for other day trips from London, I'd firstly ask if you've factored enough time in London itself? I know I'm somewhat biased as it's my home and I love it, but it is a big city with a lot to see. I would give London a few days to get the best from it. Bath is very easy as a day trip from London - about 1.5 hours on a direct train to get there (and Bath city centre is fairly compact and easy to get around). As for stonehenge, I've never seen the attraction myself. It would be more difficult to do, i.e. a longer journey to get there, but there are oodles of day trip options by coach from London. If it was me I'd forego stonehenge to get another day in London.

Paris is a fab city but I would save it for another trip if you can. Just going there for the day doesn't do it justice. You can see several sights but you'll need to pack them in, and forget places that typically have long queues (e.g. the Louvre) as you won't want to spend a chunk of your day queuing.

That all said, if you do really want to go then the Eurostar train is a cool way to travel between London and Paris, and even if you only get a day in Paris you'll enjoy it. My main advice would be, firstly, book the Eurostar well in advance for best prices, head out early and back late, and book somewhere nice for lunch somewhere fairly central, e.g. in the Marais district, so you have a special 'pivot' on the day.

gkrnjlr Sep 13, 16 6:10 am

We have plans to be in London for about a week. It's probably not enough time to see/do everything, but most of the highlights?

The thought of day trips would be instead of going to Dublin. Would you opt for Dublin? We also planned on flying back home from DUB instead of LHR. Oddly enough, it's a lower price to return home from DUB than LHR.

Thank you for the help on Edinburgh and Dublin!

TravelingNomads Sep 13, 16 8:05 am

Sounds like we have similar plans except most of our vacation will be in Ireland.

We were able to book flights on RyanAir from Dublin to Edinburgh for only $14 or $17 each which was cheaper than the other options. We figured that we'd rent a car in Edinburgh and then drive down to London and be there for a week.

I'll have to keep an eye on this thread to see what everyone suggests! Hope you have a great trip.

gkrnjlr Sep 13, 16 8:53 am


Originally Posted by flwrlover1 (Post 27205462)
Sounds like we have similar plans except most of our vacation will be in Ireland.

We were able to book flights on RyanAir from Dublin to Edinburgh for only $14 or $17 each which was cheaper than the other options. We figured that we'd rent a car in Edinburgh and then drive down to London and be there for a week.

I'll have to keep an eye on this thread to see what everyone suggests! Hope you have a great trip.

We do sound like we have similar plans - just opposite itinerary.

With flights on RyanAir I have heard that the weight of our luggage will be the catch. I've not looking into RyanAir yet, but if we have carry-on luggage is that also subject to weight restrictions? That's a deal for a flight! Wow! I was finding Aer Lingus from EDI to DUB for about $98. That is reasonable, too...I thought.

These boards are so helpful! If you learn more will you please share it here, too?

Thanks!

TravelingNomads Sep 13, 16 9:45 am

Yeah, we are traveling lighter than normal. If I remember correctly, the bigger carryon can weigh 22 lbs, the smaller carryon doesn't have a weight limit. We're trying to book hotels where we'll have access to a washing machine once a week.

stut Sep 13, 16 9:57 am

All you wanted to know about Ryanair luggage allowance but were afraid to ask:

https://www.ryanair.com/gb/en/useful...erview/Baggage

Personally, if you can find a decent fare (particularly if there's a Business Plus sale on), I find premium front row seats (which comes with pre-boarding) make the whole process a little more civilised. Not that it's a particularly long flight.

lwildernorva Sep 13, 16 7:00 pm

Agree with the analysis that two days will allow a decent overview of Dublin but will feel squeezed in Edinburgh. A hop on/off bus in each city is worthwhile. Although perhaps an unfair comparison, measuring Dublin Castle versus Edinburgh Castle illustrates the issue between the two cities: Dublin Castle can be done in two hours while Edinburgh Castle could take much longer. And the views of the city and surrounding countryside from Edinburgh Castle are worth the price while Dublin Castle is in the middle of Dublin but without elevation--in fact, going to the rooftop bar at the Guinness Brewery is the best view of Dublin and should be done.

If you're of a literary or music bent, however, Dublin matches up against Edinburgh and might justify a longer stay of a day or two. I've had the luxury of multiple trips to both areas, but I definitely understand that if you didn't know whether you would return, you'd like to slip in no more than a couple of days in both cities.

gkrnjlr Sep 14, 16 6:15 am

Should we consider taking Dublin out of the itinerary and spend more time in Edinburgh? The two days we have "extra" spend 1 extra day in Edinburgh (making it a total of 3 days there) and then take a day trip from Edinburgh to Loch Ness? (Or what other day trips would you recommend?)

In the alternative....the two "extra days"..... Spend 1 extra day in London and do a day trip from there? And then an extra day in Edinburgh?

London_traveller Sep 15, 16 6:22 am

Interesting dilemma. If you were to asking whether to choose either Edinburgh or Dublin, I'd say Edinburgh without a doubt. If you have time for both then do both, but there is less to see in Dublin, as nice a city as it is.

Three nights in Edinburgh does open up more options, both to see more of the city and for trips out. Either out to see the countryside or to Glasgow - an easy trip on the train. Loch Ness would be doable in a day but only do it if you like long coach trips. It's not close. There are plenty of options for day trips out of Edinburgh, typically to see mountains, castles and whiskey distilleries. My best advice is take a look online and work out if there are any specific others that appeal. I'd personally go for something closer so you're not spending so many hours on a coach.

Thinking about it, three nights in Edinburgh with a flight to Dublin on the morning of the fourth, so you have most of the day (and evening) in Dublin, before your flight home the next day, is a pretty good use of time.

A week in London is plenty. You could also be thinking of day trips out of London to, say, Oxford, Cambridge or Bath. Or even Paris as per other threads on here, but that would be a very full day (although a cool thing to say you visited Paris for the day, from London :cool:).

Arctic Troll Sep 15, 16 8:52 am

I'd say go for both Dublin and Edinburgh if you can afford both. Two days in Edinburgh may be a bit squeezed but you'd have enough time to do Edinburgh Castle, souvenir shopping and even take a train ride out over the Forth Rail Bridge if that's your thing. There'd be stuff you'd not get to see, but I don't think the extra day in Edinburgh would be worth missing out on Dublin for.

Dublin is a different city but there's plenty to see, Trinity College quad is beautiful, the post office, the Guinness museum is worth a visit, so is the Jameson's whiskey distillery if you have time. Definitely make time for cake from Queen of Tarts though. And try and catch an Irish music session in one of the pubs in Temple Bar if you can.

gkrnjlr Sep 17, 16 8:30 pm


Originally Posted by Arctic Troll (Post 27215549)
I'd say go for both Dublin and Edinburgh if you can afford both. Two days in Edinburgh may be a bit squeezed but you'd have enough time to do Edinburgh Castle, souvenir shopping and even take a train ride out over the Forth Rail Bridge if that's your thing. There'd be stuff you'd not get to see, but I don't think the extra day in Edinburgh would be worth missing out on Dublin for.

Dublin is a different city but there's plenty to see, Trinity College quad is beautiful, the post office, the Guinness museum is worth a visit, so is the Jameson's whiskey distillery if you have time. Definitely make time for cake from Queen of Tarts though. And try and catch an Irish music session in one of the pubs in Temple Bar if you can.

Excellent information! And cake from Queen of Tarts sounds good! (I am a foodie!)

I think this is the plan we're leaning towards.
Are there any hotels that are close to the airport and offer airport transportation, but also have transportation options from the hotel to the city center OR an organized tour that would pick us up at an airport hotel?

I really appreciate everyone's help! Thank you!

lwildernorva Sep 18, 16 8:59 am


Originally Posted by gkrnjlr (Post 27226988)
Excellent information! And cake from Queen of Tarts sounds good! (I am a foodie!)

I think this is the plan we're leaning towards.
Are there any hotels that are close to the airport and offer airport transportation, but also have transportation options from the hotel to the city center OR an organized tour that would pick us up at an airport hotel?

I really appreciate everyone's help! Thank you!

I wouldn't bother with an airport hotel in Dublin. The airport is relatively close to the center of Dublin, maybe 15 minutes with no traffic, and is easily accessed by using the Airlink bus: http://www.dublinbus.ie/Your-Journey...port-Services/. There are a couple of hotels on or around the airport property, but most of the hotels that advertise themselves as "airport" hotels are a decent distance from the airport--not much closer than central Dublin by the Airlink.

If you really don't want to stay in the city, I'd consider Malahide, a small, seaside town north of Dublin and northeast of the airport. There are several nice restaurants in town, a seaside walking path, and the DART into Dublin, which will take about 30 minutes or so and put you in the heart of O'Connell Street several blocks north of the Liffey.

Once in the city, I'd consider one of the hop-on/hop-off bus tours--which would also be a good option in Edinburgh. There are also literary and pub music tours: http://www.dublinpubcrawl.com/.

I can't give you a comprehensive survey of the Dublin food scene, but I have had two excellent meals at the Winding Stair.

Arctic Troll Sep 19, 16 4:13 am


Originally Posted by gkrnjlr (Post 27226988)
Are there any hotels that are close to the airport and offer airport transportation, but also have transportation options from the hotel to the city center

Most of the "airport hotels" are a 10 minute cab ride away from the terminal, if you're going to do that you may as well be in a hotel in the city centre. As lwildernorva says, depending on time of day you can be in the city centre on the Airlink bus or the Aircoach coach service within 20 minutes, and you wouldn't have the faff on of getting into town from the hotel.

I can't give you many tips on food, except to say Cornucopia (veggie) is a nice spot for lunch. But that lots of other people agree, so it's normally packed.

MissJoeyDFW Sep 21, 16 9:39 pm


Originally Posted by gkrnjlr (Post 27204885)
My sister and I are going to be traveling to London and the Lake District next year. We are talking about adding on Edinburgh and Dublin at the end of the trip. I know 2 days is not much - but is it do-able to do a fast tour of these cities (guided tour, possibly?)?

We have a few extra days in the trip that we have to play with and we've toyed with the idea of 1) day trip from London to Stonehenge, Bath, etc.; 2) Day trip from London to Paris.

Any input is appreciated.

Thank you.

My recommendation, pick one, not both. There is more to Scotland than just Edinburgh and there is more to Ireland than just Dublin. There are so many things to do and see in both cities and the surrounding area I would say pick one and tour it well instead of spending additional time traveling.

As far as day trips from London, Bath is beautiful and the bus trip down to Bath covers a lot of pretty area too. Another day trip I went on last year was Becky's Secret Cottage tour in the Cotswold. This was a fantastic tour. You take the train to Moreton-in-Marsh. They pick you up in Mercedes vans and take you back to a private cottage where the explain the tour, give you a cup of tea and a snack and away you go. They take you where the larger tour buses can't go and Cotswolds countryside is gobsmacking beautiful. You go back to the cottage two more times, once for lunch and another time for traditional cream tea. Everyone on the tour (there were 14 of us) raved about the food and the cottage coziness. http://www.cotswoldtourismtours.co.uk
https://www.facebook.com/CottageTour/

So for day trips I would consider the following.
Becky's Secret Cottage
Bath tour, there are several out there.

I love Scotland, I also love the Rabbies day tours. Take the high speed train from London to Edinburgh and stay 3 or 4 nights there. The hop on hop off buses are a nice way to get a snap shot of the city and history but the Rabbies tours are a great way to see the outlying areas. Here are their day tours from Edinburgh. https://www.rabbies.com/en/tour-scot...from-edinburgh I have taken the Highlands tour and the Stirling Castle tour. I have also taken the 3 day Isle of Skye tour which was wonderful.

If you decide Rosslyn Chapel is a must do because you like the Da Vinci Code you don't need to sign up for a tour you can just take the bus from Edinburgh city centre and it lets you off right at the end of the drive to Rosslyn Chapel.

While I have been to Dublin and loved it there are probably people better qualified than I to give you Dublin and Ireland details.


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