I'm a planner. I like to have things laid out so I know where I will be at night. For this trip, I made reservations at campgrounds (based on which ones were open during the off-season) except for the first night and the last 2 nights. I originally had a reservation for the first night but I thought we picked up the camper earlier in the day. With it being Robert's first day driving a strange vehicle on the wrong side of the road plus it being a manual (which he hasn't driven in a long time), we decided to cancel the first night at our first campground. As mentioned in the previous post, Mark was so helpful with finding us a place to park for our first night.
We're told that in Ireland if you find a place to pull over on the side of any road, it's fair game for staying overnight. As long as there are no signs stating that there's no overnight parking, you're good. In fact, if you want to stay in a field, as long as you get the farmer's permission, you can. The problem I see with that is that the farmers aren't in sight. I suppose you could drive up to their house (if you can find it) and ask, but that seems a little weird to me.
Mark (at Bunk Campers) found a lodge/marina halfway between Dublin and Galway that was just off the motorway. We were given permission to park overnight (in fact, there was another camper in the parking lot) as long as we came in and bought a pint or two. When we arrived, I went inside to see if we could order something to eat. We arrived just after the kitchen closed, so we weren't able to order. But Sean, the barman, called us a cab so we could go into town. After an hour, we were still waiting. Sean called the cab driver and let him know he wasn't happy that he didn't show up. It turned out to be no big deal; the town was just a couple of miles down the road so we ordered something online and drove in to pick it up. We ate in the camper and then went inside for a couple of drinks and some conversation. We ended up getting some great tips on places to go from Joe (a tour bus driver) and another tour bus driver. Sean and Joe provided great entertainment by way of the stereotypical Irish banter back and forth. When the clock turned to 2:00 a.m., we walked back out to the camper and settled in for an excellent sleep. We woke up the next morning to the sight of boats on the river.