LivingTravelIreland in a motorhome

Ireland in a motorhome

With stunning scenery and quiet country lanes, Emerald Isle is a destination that basically calls for a road trip. Some people argue that the best way to explore every corner of Ireland is by motorhome. Traveling in a motorhome in Ireland has become more affordable and popular, but the mode of transport still retains a certain mystique of driving into the unknown.

However, if you want to be sure of a smooth ride and hope to avoid serious problems (like running out of fuel, detailed below), driving a motorhome in Ireland requires a certain amount of planning. Camping in Ireland is certainly a pleasant experience, but also a challenging one. Get ready for the trip of a lifetime with these local tips:

Rent a motorhome in Ireland

First things first: if you live in Great Britain or Europe and already own a motorhome, you will most likely want to use your own vehicle in Ireland. This has several advantages, first of all, that you are already familiar with your own vehicle and know how it handles, what are its dimensions and what is the noise sound from the rear.

However, having your own motorhome in Great Britain or Europe means that you have to bring the vehicle to Ireland. It means that you will have to drive to one of the closest ports and take a ferry to Ireland. Taking the ferry to Ireland can be quite expensive compared to flying, but this depends on time and route.

Be sure to check the prices and do the math because sometimes it can be much cheaper to take a flight to Ireland and then rent a motorhome on the island. Companies like Celtic Campervans or Bunk Campers, to name just two, will help.

And speaking of costs, if you decide to take the ferry, you can pay to stock up on food and snacks before boarding. Prices for onboard meals can easily reach the dizzying heights of a fancy restaurant … minus the luxury, and occasionally less the taste.

In Ireland – restricted freedom

Having finally arrived in Ireland (or collected your rental), you will soon be faced with another challenge: where to stay. One of the reasons for opting for a motorhome is to have the freedom to stop and stay where you want, but this is not always possible in Ireland. In many places, you will find signs prohibiting overnight stays in parking lots or on the side of the road. Even more complicated, other places will have a front door that will only allow vehicles that are less than two meters (approximately 6 feet) tall.

This is applied with the help of a solid steel bar called a «tinker bar» on the road that will cause serious damage to the car if it is too high.

The restrictions have come to deter unsettled minorities from claiming these areas for semi-permanent residence. Laws have also been passed in recent years that severely penalize overnight or longer parking in restricted areas or without the explicit permission of the private land owner. In general, tourists will be warned to go ahead and behave in the future; repeat offenders can view the impounded offending vehicle.

Several guides take the hint simply to ignore the signs, but this is not recommended and could make it difficult for anyone hoping to travel by motorhome in Ireland in the future.

Staying in a trailer park

The totally legal way to spend the night anywhere in Ireland is in a designated camping area that allows motorhomes. While these may be popular in some parts of Europe, they are almost non-existent or at least very difficult to find in Ireland. That means so-called trailer parks, which are similar to trailer parks in the United States, are the best way to go.

As there is no central database for motorhome parks in Ireland, it requires a bit of research and information from the internet, from brochures or brochures you find while driving, on other sites or at tourist information offices. Asking to find out by word of mouth, among other caravan users, or through site management where you are currently staying, is another surefire way to find your next place to stay.

Prices vary from park to park and do not always reflect the level of facilities you can find. Generally speaking, the caravan parks in Northern Ireland were of a palpably better standard than in the Republic.

Time of year

Adding to the confusion is the variable “season” that can be found among approved RV parks. In Ireland, most trailer parks are open between March and October, usually between St. Patrick’s Day and the October bank holiday.

But, and this is a BIG BUT… many RV parks only run full service between mid-May and late August only. Outside of these times, you may still be able to stay there, but not all advertised services may be available. Call and ask by phone if you need something urgently!

The gas problem

When I personally traveled to Ireland by motorhome, we had three bottles of gasoline packed… or so I thought. I actually managed to avoid checking the bottles properly, only to find that one was half full and the others were empty. It was time for a recharge.

Now comes the crisis: the gas bottles you buy and refill on the continent are not compatible with those in Ireland. Gas is, but accessories are not. So your bottles cannot be exchanged for filled ones, nor can they be refilled without converting (and then reconverting). Which will lead to cold, dark nights and no hot food except takeout.

The only source we could find was through the Flogas network: you should check with them about possible recharging points before traveling, the contact email and phone numbers are on the Flogas website.

Further arrest after murder of young teacher in Ireland

Who is responsible for Ashling Murphy's untimely death? A 31-year-old was arrested on Tuesday as a suspected perpetrator. Another arrest was made.

Murder of young teacher upsets Ireland

In broad daylight, a 23-year-old elementary school teacher is killed while running. The act in Tullamore drives many compatriots. Ireland has a problem, the government makes clear.

Ronan Keating had himself sterilized

He is the father of five children. He feels blessed, says Ronan Keating, but "that's it, that's enough".

Storm "Barra" rages over the British Isles

At the end of November, storm "Arwen" caused chaos. Now “Barra” is sweeping the British Isles. Tens of thousands of people are without electricity.

Ireland allows corona vaccinations for 12 to 15 year olds

About half of the Irish are double vaccinated. Now the way is cleared for teenagers. But it doesn't work without the consent of the parents.