Driving In Clare...
Driving is a great way to tour County Clare, many roads are relatively quiet and compared with many countries Irish motorists are uncompetitive, and have an easy driving style. Driving gives you great freedom, out on the open road you can stop when its convenient to you; to walk down a country lane, to explore a picturesque shoreline or to take a picture.
Drive on the left-hand side of the road and pay particular attention when driving again after a stop for food, petrol etc. Also there are oodles of roundabouts in County Clare especially in Ennis Town and on the road from Shannon Airport. So brush up on how to use a roundabout, remember traffic coming from the right-hand side always has precedence on roundabouts.
When you drive you rented car for the first time, take it around the block at the airport a few times to get used to the controls and driving on the left-hand side of the road.
Get a good road map, and have someone other than the driver to navigate
Be careful where and when you pull in to take picture, Clare is truly breathtaking and turning a corner you might be awe struck but keep in mind other drivers and find a suitable place to park. Many of the popular sites have parking have gravelled areas to pull in.
Book your car hire in advance, to avoid any unforeseen problems arising.
Some of the road signs in County Clare
and rural Ireland are quite small and difficult to read. Many are also bilingual with the placename in both English and Irish. Road signs changed to kilometres in 2005 and the speed limits are marked as km there is still an odd rouge mile sign. Brown coloured signs indicate facilities and amenities of particular interest to tourists.
The direction signs are coloured differently for road types;
1. Freeways/Motorways = Blue
2. National Primary & Secondary Routes = Green
3. Regional and Local Routes = White
During summer months there is a lot of farm activity on rural roads, so watch out for trackers and pulling large machinery, these farmers often only travel short distances on the roads so dont be overly eager to try and overtake them. You may also meet farmers out herding, County Clare
has many dairy farmers early in the morning and evening are milking times so be on alert. If you meet a heard coming towards you pull in and let them pass do not try to drive through them!
If you are a visitor to Ireland it is important that you are aware of the national speed limits. Driving in excess of the speed limit may result in an on-the-spot fine of 80.
It is illegal to drive and use a handheld mobile phone while driving in Ireland. If you receive a call find a safe place to stop before answering or get a passenger to take the call.
Passengers in the front and back seats are required to wear seat belts at all times and children under twelve are not allowed to travel in the front seat.
In Ireland you can not turn left on a red light.