Derek Ray

Derek Ray is a Reader contributor. See staff page for published articles.

Western Ireland: Don’t Drive

Having recently returned from a trip to Ireland, I can empathize with your feelings on this topic. Driving was nerve wracking at times on those narrow roads, especially the first few hours when I was just getting adjusted. I had heard so many tales of cars scraped up against hedges and stone walls that I got the Super CDW coverage for (at least some) peace of mind. I would recommend this for anyone renting a car over there. Your regular car insurance will most likely not cover you. Watch out for blind intersections and stop signs obstructed by trees or hedges. I nearly had a collision coming out of Kilkenny on a detour. The intersection was blocked by a hedge and a car speeding by almost hit me. When I told this story to a friend he said the same thing happened to him. Once I got used to it, though, driving wasn't so bad, especially out in the countryside where there's hardly any traffic. I actually came to prefer the roundabouts to our intersections here. I found the GPS to be extremely helpful (although the "recalculating" became annoying when I took a different route than what my GPS friend desired). I would have become hopelessly lost without it. Ultimately, I'm glad I rented a car because I saw amazing stretches of scenery I would have missed had I opted for the bus or train. Slea Head Drive in Dingle was especially spectacular. I think it's an individual decision whether to drive or not to drive, but anyone heading over there should be aware of the challenges.
— June 22, 2012 3:33 p.m.

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