Monday, March 28, 2011

Beautiful SUNNY Ireland

I finally have good internet in my room and don't have to sit in the lobby to type!!

We have had the most beautiful weather in Ireland ever since we have been here.  We haven't seen one drop of rain and the skys have been "Carolina Blue" every day.  I'm afraid we are due for a change tomorrow though but we are not complaining.  I have only had my jacket on a few times - mostly just sweaters and long sleeve tees.

We have seen and done so much that I am keeping a travel journal and trying to jot things down.  (It's hell getting old and not remembering what you did yesterday!!)  I think my last blog post, we had finished our days in Kilkenny and were headed to Kilarney.  On our way we stopped and toured the Rock of Cashel which is a 12-13th century cathedral.  It is just amazing to me how old these buildings are and to think the residents of America were living in tee pees!!  While in Cashel, we visited a (very) local pub there - Pat Fox's.  We had met an Irelander on the road and he told us to stop in and tell his brother hi so we did!  From there, we headed to Cahir where Ashley and I toured a medieval castle.  Sonny had seen his fill of castles and cathedrals so he sat in a park and read his novel.  Afterwards, we met him in a local pub (surprise!!) and had a pint.  When we were leaving, there was a funeral procession going by.  It was very interesting to us - instead of everyone following in their cars, they were walking and flanking the car carrying the casket. 

From there we drove on to Killarney.  Our hotel was ultra modern.  I was not so impressed with Killarney - it was more of a party town and of course, us being there on a Saturday night didn't help.  We had dinner in a small pub (great fish & chips!) and watched a soccer match against Ireland and Macedonia.  Everyone in the pub was glued to the tv just like us watching the Steelers play!  When Ireland won, there was a jovial atmosphere.  We left there and went to another pub thinking we would listen to some good Irish music.  Instead, we could have been in a bar in America with all the young people shoulder to shoulder and the rock music playing.  We did not stay there long!!  Unfortunately, at our hotel there was a bar with live music playing in the courtyard downstairs that was also really crowded and our window overlooked the courtyard.  They partied until about 2:30 AM!  I was not happy!!

On Sunday we managed to book a tour bus (all day) to see the Ring of Kerry which is a 100+ mile horseshoe around the Iveragh Peninsula. The route goes along the peninsula with views of Kells Bay and the beautiful Dingle Bay.  There are lovely mountain range views along the Iveragh Peninsula also.  I got some great pictures!  We made several stops to take photos.  We went through one little village that only has 90 people living in it!  (Molls Gap)  The downside of the tour was our tour driver.  He had a very heavy accent and no one on the bus could understand him.  We tried to slow him down which worked for about 5 minutes!  But it was much better than Sonny having to navigate those narrow coastal roads!  Their roads here (not the major highway) are about as wide as one lane of our highway - with no shoulder and stone fences on the passenger side.   Last night we had dinner (and a few pints) at Danny Manns Bar.  It was quite large but there was a good singer in there singing many Clancy Brothers songs that we enjoyed.

Today we drove to Doolin.  Our first stop was a beautiful little town, Adare in the county of Limerick.  It is  regarded as being Ireland's prettiest and most picturesque village.  Adare's streets are lined with original thatched cottages which have survived for hundreds of years. Some of the cottages are kept by local restaurants and Arts & Crafts shops, but many are still privately owned. We just strolled around town and the Visitors Center.  Our next stop was in Bunratty where the original Durty Nellie's Pub is located.  We had lunch there and took a lot of pictures.  Durty Nellie's is a favorite bar of ours in San Antonio when we visit there so it was fun to find the original.  After lunch, we toured the 15th century Bunratty Castle, the 19th century Bunratty Folk Park and the Village Street. The Castle is the most complete and authentic medieval fortress in Ireland.  Built in 1425, the castle was restored in 1954 to its former medieval splendour and now contains mainly 15th and 16th century furnishings.

Here are some pictures - in no particular order!





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JHerederoS said...
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