With only five days to travel around I would be inclined to stay in the same region in the west and not try to cover too much ground. Imo you need to hire a car as travelling by bus will take a lot of strategic planning in order to link up with services from each town, also you will have luggage to haul around. I suggest you hire a car in Sligo, drive to Westport (visit Westport House, Matt Molloy’s pub; www.mattmolloy.com for trad music, climb Croagh Patrick or at least visit the base area! go to the beaches around nearby Louisburgh; www.louisburgh.com), stay at least one night in the town. www.westporttourism.com
Drive on the Leenane, stopping for lunch and to take in the lovely scenery. Drive on to Clifden, staying one night (take a drive on the Sky Road before you leave). Drive through Connemara, possibly via Roundstone (you could take various routes) then on to Galway city for a night or two. Return the car in Galway and take the Citylink bus directly to Dublin airport, saving you the trouble of driving across the country on motorways on your last day.
Try www.atlaschoice.com for car-hire in Sligo
Sligo airport is about 8 km (5 mi) west of the town, in Strandhill, but public transportation links are not great. Bus Éireann run buses (route 472) seven times a day (five times on Sa, not at all on Su) starting across the road from the bus station, picking-up and setting-down at the airport only on request. A taxi will cost you between €10 to €15, depending on number of passengers, time of day/night, etc.
Sligo is an increasingly busy town and as a result the traffic has multiplied by a huge degree. Driving around Sligo is frustrating and sometimes confusing, courtesy of the one way system they put in to alleviate traffic. Car parking is also at a premium in the town. You will need parking discs that can be bought at any shop displaying the disc symbol, and then you will have to scrape off time and date information and put it in a prominent part of your car. The largest car park is behind Tesco's and there are others at Dunnes Store's and as you follow the one way system there is another at the top of the hill. There is some on street parking but this is limited. Try to stock up on a supply of discs so that you can park without having to then go hunting for them.
We drove with several taxi drivers when getting around in Sligo, and found that although the rates were a little bit steep, the taxi drivers themselves were very friendly and helpful with things. One taxi driver didn't even charge us for a journey because a campsite we had reached was closed, and took us to the other campsite free of charge!
There is an airport in Sligo, but it isnt very big! Has flights from/to Dublin with Aer Arann. AFAIK, it does not provide to flights to any other city apart from Dublin.
It is 15 km from the town in a place called Strandhill.
Take the N4 road from Dublin to take you directly to Sligo. The drive will take you approximately 3 hours. Between Sligo and Longford, some of the scenery is breathtakingly beautiful. There are a number of viewing bays where you can pull in and admire the views of the lakes and mountains.
We Drove from Dublin - 3 hours.
You can fly from airports all over Ireland but check for outside of Ireland.
We had our cars with us but getting into the town you could walk, 20 mins or get a taxi, £4., from the hotel where they will book one at any time.
a view of the road side which goes to enniskilen, a very nice little town on the north east of sligo!!
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