drop you off again before dinner. (A few even make the drive all the way from Dublin!)
This is a quick and efficient way to take in the countryside, but of course it won't give you
the full experience that an extended stay can offer.
Once you're in Connemara, there are a few bus lines running between the major cities and
the National Park, but it's often easier just to hire a cab . Cab drivers are extremely know-
ledgeable about the area, and adept at navigating the narrow mountainside roads of this
region. Renting a car is not recommended, since these roads can often give foreign drivers
a bit of a panic attack - especially if they're accustomed to lanes, signage, and guardrails,
none of which are easily found in rural Connemara.
Connemara National Park
The heart of Connemara - and its most popular destination for hiking, biking, and walking
- is the National Park about 40 miles from Galway near the border of County Mayo. It of-
fers some of Ireland's most scenic hiking, and the mountains are generally a bit gentler than
those of Kerry or Donegal. You can get spectacular views without a backbreaking journey
along the way.
The National Park itself is short on accommodations, but there are several hotels in the
nearby town of Letterfrack , which is right on the edge of the park. There's also a youth
hostel right in the middle of the mountains that makes an ideal base for hikers and back-
The Twelve Bens