3 Ireland 01

This section is about places in the following 8 Counties of Ireland:
Cork, Kerry, Limerick, Clare, Galway, Mayo, Sligo and Donegal.

Bumming around Ireland, on a Bus Eireann Bus, it suddenly came to me:
It is a big part of Irish Culture. I give you; The Lake of Guinness!

The Biggest Pint of The Black Stuff!
When in Ireland, there is one, really, 100% «touristy» thing you should do. Go visit
The Guinness Museum\The Hop Store. See: http://www.guinness.com/ – If you live in Norway, when asked by the web site wich country you live in, say «Denmark».
Otherwise, kjell magne will appear on the screen, and say: YOU are not allowed to s e e what they have for sale @ Guinness.com! Not even a postcard!
– And for this reason, of course, you can’t buy anything. (- The silly, religious s..!).
Anyway, get some stuff at The Hop Store, learn all about Guinness at The Museum,
and make sure you get your complementary:

The Perfect Pint, at The Gravity Bar.Pint of The Black Stuff. One of the best pints you’ll ever have!
They say, of course, it tastes the same everywhere, but that is a load of…..
– There isn’t a brewery in the world, that can make that happen!
(I’ve enjoyed 16 of these, number 17 pending).

What to see in Ireland…?  – Where to go…?
An impossible question to answer. I’ve tried to make a list of some of the places I very much enjoyed visiting, either alone, or as part of The England Krokket Team. And most of these places are mentioned in all travel guides. A few years back I bought several different Guide Books on Ireland; Rough Guide, Footprint and Lonely Planet, among others. I settled for Lonely Planet, and have bought it ever since. It covers the essentials, and the people writing it, have actually been there, in the places they describe.
(Sadly, they removed the Perfect Pint List…!).
http://www.lonelyplanet.com/ireland

In County Cork : 01 Cork City

Cork is the financial centre of Ireland. (Don’t let the mrs. take off with the creditcard).
http://www.cork-guide.ie/corkcity.htm

Sightseeing in Cork.Walking around the town.

Le Chateau, Cork City.Get a decent meal at Le Chateau.

Mr. 301 outside The Hairy Lemon, on our Oliver Plunkett Street Pub Crawl, Cork City.

Mr. 301 outside The Hairy Lemon, on our Oliver Plunkett Street Pub Crawl.

When in Cork, take a day trip to either The Cobh or Blarney Castle, or both!

From The Cobh, with The Cathedral, The Cobh, Cork Harbour.From The Cobh, with The Cathedral.
http://www.cobhheritage.com/index2.html

The following 3 pictures are from Blarney Castle:

The Blarney Castle, County Cork.
The Blarney Castle, County Cork.
The Blarney Castle, County Cork.http://www.blarneycastle.ie/

County Cork: 02 Cape Clear Island
On the south coast of County Cork, there are many nice, small towns, and you can get to most of them on a Bus Eireann Bus. Perfect places to hide away for a couple of days. Go to Schull or Baltimore, stay a day or two, and pay a visit to Cape Clear Island.
Hike aroud the island, finish off with a nice pint in the pub.
http://www.schull.ie/
http://www.baltimore.ie/

 

Schull, Daytrip to Cape Clear Island, County Cork.

Schull, Daytrip to Cape Clear Island, County Cork.
Schull, Daytrip to Cape Clear Island, County Cork.
Schull, Daytrip to Cape Clear Island, O'Driscoll, County Cork.http://www.capeclearisland.com/

County Cork: 03 Midleton
For all whiskey-freaks, a visit to Midleton is compulsory! This is where most of the Irish Whiskeys are made nowadays.

Midleton, Old Midleton Distillery, County Cork.
Midleton, Old Midleton Distillery, County Cork.http://www.jamesonwhiskey.com/Heritage/Visitor-Centres/Midleton_experience_Tour_info.aspx
or http://www.jamesonwhiskey.com/age_verification.aspx
(The last link is a «kjell magne»-link, for Norwegians, say you live in Denmark).

 

In County Kerry: 01 Killarney
Known for narrow, nice streets, plenty of  shops, many great Bars and nice restaurants.
And the perfect startingpoint for exploring Killarney National Park, or The Kerry Way, a trip around The Kerry Peninsula. http://www.killarney.ie/

O'Connor's, Killarney.In Killarney’s many traditional bars, and hotel bars, they serve some of
The Best Irish Coffee in the country. (I’ve tried it about 50 different places on
The Green Island, and the only one that’s even close, is served at The Jameson Museum, Bow Street, Smithfield, Dublin).

County Kerry: 02 Killorglin
At the start of The Ring of Kerry, (on The Iveragh Peninsula), you find the small town of Killorglin. 2.5 small narrow streets, and every year, on August 10th, 11th, and 12th,
it goes CRAZY. At the festival:

Puck Fair, Killorglin, County Kerry.Puck Fair. King Puck, Killorglin, County Kerry.

Puck Fair. King Puck, Killorglin, County Kerry.They sell food, and a lot of other stuff you don’t need, in the streets. Big, free concerts in the town square, (in 2006 it was Frances Black), the pubs are open untill v e r y late,
and in general, the festival is just an excuse for going around the bend for three days.
I remember the last pub closing at 0600, and opening again at 0700.
Read all about The Puck Fair:  http://www.puckfair.ie/

County Kerry: 03 Caherciveen
Continuing from Killorglin, on The Ring of Kerry you’ll eventually get to Caherciveen.
(Both places, like in most of Ireland in July and August, you will have to book your beds
in advance). Book a bed for two nights at: The Sive Hostel: http://www.sivehostel.ie/
In order to be able to pay a visit to
The Skellig Islands. If you ask the people at the hostel, they will reserve a place for you on The Skellig Trip. (Bus from the hostel, then a small rocky boat…!). An unbeatable combination of raw nature, human spirit, and some strange part of humanity… See: http://www.sacred-destinations.com/ireland/skellig-michael.htm

Skellig Michael, County Kerry.
Skellig Michael, County Kerry.
Skellig Michael, County Kerry.
Skellig Michael, County Kerry.

County Kerry: 04 Dingle
A wonderful little spot, the town that gave the name to The Dingle Peninsula.
It’s a nice town, but packed with tourists. Good pubs and restaurants.

Dingle, from The Harbour, County, Kerry.

Dingle, from The Harbour, County, Kerry.

Dingle, from The Harbour, County, Kerry.http://www.dingle-peninsula.ie/
The two main attractions to me, were actually outside the town, And I really recommend:
1. A trip to The Blasket Islands. Ferry from Dingle Harbour, appr. € 40. Go see the local wildlife. The local guide on the ferry was excellent.
(I’m afraid I managed to «offend» the locals, answering a question about wether I’d seen the dolphin: I’m a Norwegian, it’s a fish).
From the boat trip:

 

Dingle, Trip to The Blasket Islands, County Kerry.

Dingle, Trip to The Blasket Islands, County Kerry.
Dingle, Trip to The Blasket Islands, County Kerry.

Dingle, Trip to The Blasket Islands, County Kerry.http://irishislands.info/blaskets.html
2. A bus tour around the western part of The Dingle Peninsula. At Appr. € 20.

Dingle, The Dingle Peninsula Bus Tour, County Kerry.
Dingle, The Dingle Peninsula Bus Tour, County Kerry.
Dingle, The Dingle Peninsula Bus Tour, County Kerry.
Dingle, The Dingle Peninsula Bus Tour, County Kerry.
Dingle, The Dingle Peninsula Bus Tour, County Kerry.
Dingle, The Dingle Peninsula Bus Tour, County Kerry.
Dingle, The Dingle Peninsula Bus Tour, County Kerry.

http://www.dingletourskerry.com/index.php

In County Limerick: Limerick City
http://www.limerick.com/
The town is not as bad as many people believe, at least not for tourists. Things you should do, while in Limerick; they are all very much tourist stuff: 1. Visit King John’s Castle.

Limerick, King John's Castle, County Limerick.2. Do The Frank McCourt Guided Walking Tour. I found it both educational and funny, and I haven’t even read this award winning book! (Google: Frank McCourt \ Angela’s Ashes).
3. Visit Dolan’s, on Dock Road, for a good pint and a great music session.
4. Don’t miss out on a visit to The Haven!

Limerick, The Haven, County Limerick.

25/26 Davis Street. They got a great pint.

5. Attend a medival banquet at The Bunratty Castle, in County Clare. You can do this as a halfday trip from Limerick, or from Ennis, (County Clare). A «must do». There’s nothing going on there, except the castle and the folk park. It’s just a bus stop on the way to\from Shannon Airport. Take the afternoon session, and make sure to book online well ahead. The music, the singing and the dancing was very good. The food was excellent. Could perhaps have had a better wine, but then again, you get as much of it as you want…
All in all, a very, very nice afternoon. (No, it’s not just the wine talking!).

Bunratty, The Castle, County Clare.
Bunratty, The Castle, County Clare.
Bunratty, The Castle, County Clare.

http://www.shannonheritage.com/Attractions/BunrattyCastleFolkPark/

In County Clare: 01 Ennis
Stay at The Abbey Tourist Hostel

Ennis, The Abbey Tourist Hostel, County Clare.
Ennis, County Clare.Visit The Abbey, the pubs, do some shopping. Do The Ennis Walking Tour, it’s a nice town. If you’ve been out hiking in The Sweet County Clare, Ennis is the place to relaxe.
http://www.visitennis.ie/contents/?PG=index.html&nav_id=1

County Clare: 02 Doolin
The last statement on Ennis, also very much applies to Doolin. I don’t quite know why, but I’m slightly obsessed with Doolin. Been there 15 times, number 16 pending. (Stayed 13 times @ Doolin Hostel?). I guess, it’s the «peace and quiet». You can go hiking somewhere, and be totally alone. Want some company again, find a pub. In the evenings they are packed.

Doolin, Fisherstreet, County Clare.Fisher Street, Doolin. http://www.doolinireland.net/

2014_07_13_0009392_Doolin_Doolin HostelWhen in Doolin, stay at Doolin Hostel. http://www.doolinhostel.com/
These days Paddy is retired, (it’s simply called Doolin Hostel), and it’s his son Anthony you’ll find behind the counter. It’s a nice Hostel, the staff is friendly,
and you can  n o t beat the location. (Book ahead).
Doolin Hostel has gone through a major renovation. The opening of the Cafe was a very good idea! The food and the cold stuff is served with a smile!
– And, for the returning guests: David’s back!
(Photo by Pope Gregory IX, 2014).
If you like hiking, there’s a new coastal hiking route, Doolin-Hag’s Head-Liscannor.
http://www.seaview-doolin.ie/burren/walking.php

The locals will know that you are a veteran, when you walk down from Doolin Hostel in t-shirt, shorts and  sandals, in the month of March, in the rain. It gets  v e r y  warm inside
Gus O’Connor’s at night. A good tip on what to do, if you got 4-5 days:
Make a round trip. One day and night in the city of Galway, cathc the ferry out to the Aran Island of Inismor, stay a couple of nights in Kilronan, exploring the island.
http://aranislandferries.com/

Aran Islands, Inishmor, Kilronan from the pier, County Galway.Kilronan, from the pier. http://aranislands.galway-ireland.ie/kilronan.htm
Then catch the ferry in to Doolin. http://www.doolinferries.com/
The Cliffs of Moher are a few km south of Doolin, visit them on land,
or catch a ferry from the pier, for the C. of M. Cruise.

The Cliffs of Moher, From The Pier, Doolin, County Clare.
The Cliffs of Moher Cruise, from the ferry The Jack B, County Clare.The Cliffs of Moher. http://www.cliffsofmoher.ie/
More on hiking: You can hike The Burren, from Ballyvaughan to Doolin. (Catch the northbound Galway bus to Ballyvaughan at 8 in the morning). http://www.burrennationalpark.ie/
Or you hike down south to Doolin along the R477, from Black Head. Very nice scenery.
Last, but not least, I strongly recommend that you make time for the 1 hour 15 minutes trip to The Doolin Cave. http://www.doolincave.ie/ It’s simply stunning.

From The Doolin Cave, Doolin, County Clare.
From The Doolin Cave, Doolin, County Clare.The Stalactite of The Doolin Cave. Only 270 000 years old.

It’s very easy to get out of Doolin. Bus Eireann has buses leaving from Paddy’s for Galway several times a day, and at least in the summer, (about 0800 in the morning), there are buses every day for Ennis, Limerick and Dublin. (Dublin is about 6 hours).

(More info on Doolin: See page 5 The Pubs).

County Clare 03: Kilrush

2014_07_10_0009373_Kilrush_The Dolphin TripComing back from The Dolphin Trip.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kilrush
http://www.county-clare-i.com/kilrush.html
A very nice town to hang uot in, for a couple of days!

County Galway: 01 Galway City

Galway, The Square, County Galway.http://www.galwaytourism.ie/
Sticking to the narrow medival streets, and the shopping area, it’s a nice town. I enjoy spending time there, but still, it hasn’t really «grown on me». As a city, it’s got everything. That said, one event you really should get to see at least once, is The Galway Races \ The Summer Festival. The Town really fills up with people, and there’s something going on for everyone. Book your bed in Galway, and buy your ticket for The Races well ahead.   I went on Ladies Day, and man, do they dress up! I had the perfect system for betting on the horses. Number 3 to win, in the first 3 races. In race number 1, my horse finished second. In race number 2, it finished last. In race number 3, it hit the woods…! I enjoyed a nice pint while watching, and it was a great day!

At The Galway Races, Galway, County Galway.http://www.galwayraces.com/

County Galway: 02 Connemara
There are many nice «hide away» spots in Connemara. I recommend Clifden and Roundstone. It’s a great area to do some hiking, otherwise a car is a good thing. (Not all that many buses). After a long day outdoors, relaxe in one of the great pubs, chatting with the locals. You’ll have a great time.

Roundstone, Malachy Kearns' Shop, Connemara, County Galway.
Roundstone, The Bay, Connnemara, County Galway.
Roundstone, Main Street, Ryan's, Connemara, County Galway.All pictures from Roundstone, Connemara.
http://www.connemara.ie/en/
http://www.clifdenchamber.ie/
http://www.roundstone.ie/index.php

County Galway: 03 Kinvara

A very nice little spot! Stay at:

Kinvara, Ashview B&BThe Ashview B&B, Main Street. A family run, friendly place. Clean, nice breafast,
and not to expensive. Give them a ring! (Paddy says Hello!).

Kinvara Town, from  Dunguaire Castle:

Kinvara, from Dunguaire CastleThe Castle:

Kinvara, Dunguaire Castlehttp://www.kinvara.com/dunc.html
http://www.discoverireland.com/us/ireland-things-to-see-and-do/listings/product/?fid=FI_16394

The main reason for visiting Kinvara, for Paddy and I, was The Boat Festival.
http://www.kinvara.com/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kinvara

Kinvara, Galway Hooker

Kinvara, Galway Hooker_01

Kinvara, Galway Hooker_02Kinvara, Galway Hooker_The Bog

The Connemara Bog

County Donegal: 01 Donegal Town
It’s a nice, small town, (appr. 2300 people), with a triangeled square in the middle. A perfect place for starting to exploring the rugged Donegal coast. Try a boat trip in The Donegal Bay. Book a bed at the very nice Donegal Town Independent Hostel.
Give our regards, (from Paddy & Pope Gregory IX), to The Lady of The House.
http://www.donegaltownhostel.com/

http://www.donegaltown.ie/ and http://www.irelandexpert.com/the_northwest_sightseeing_tours.htm
Catch a music session at The Reel Inn, Bridge Street.

County Donegal: 02 Glencolumbcille
If you ever go there, and you should, stay at The Dooey Hostel. (Book well ahead).
http://www.uniqueirishhostels.com/http:__www.uniqueirishhostels.com/Dooey_Hostel.html
(They don’t accept online bookings, give them a ring!) The Hostel is indeed unique. A bit old, and oldfashioned. The couple running it, are real characters. Especially The Lady of The House; I prefer the term «colourful». If you don’t have a sense of humour, don’t go. It’s way up in the hillside, and Glencolumcille is a small outpost, by The Atlantic. But still, there
is something going on. They got very popular coarses in Irish language and culture, there’s the museum The Folk Village, and everywhere in Donegal: The Donegal Fiddler’s Festival. http://www.donegalfiddlemusic.ie/musicallandscape.htm
The following pictures are taken from outside Dooey Hostel:

 

Glencolumbcille, from The Dooey Hostel, County Donegal.
Glencolumbcille, from The Dooey Hostel, County Donegal.

Glencolumbcille, from The Dooey Hostel, County Donegal.The Beach:

Glencolumbcille, Part of The Beach, County Donegal.

Glencolumbcille, Part of The Beach, County Donegal.

Glencolumbcille, Part of The Beach, County Donegal.

Glencolumbcille, Part of The Beach, County Donegal.And towards «The Town»:

Glencolumbcille, towards "TheTown", County Donegal.

It’s a great area for hiking, solitude and recreation, as well as being «cultural». And, when ready, hit a pub. Being Irish, this little place has three of them. Very good live music.

Biddy's, Glencolumbcille, County Donegal.Biddy’s, Glencolumbcille, County Donegal.
http://www.lonelyplanet.com/ireland/county-donegal/glencolumbcille-and-around

County Donegal: 03 Tory Island
Tory Island is rugged, and remote. 11 km north of the Donegal coast. It takes a special kind of people to live there. I think it’s a wonderful place. http://www.oileanthorai.com/
If you like remote places, the sea, cliffs, and «Islanders», do not hesitate. Only, you must have some time to spare. When part of The England Krokket Team went there, we had an adventure: We rode a local bus from Letterkenny to the pier, and on arrival, the last ferry to Tory was gone. Returning two days later, by the first ferry from Tory, the last bus was gone… We had two very nice nights on the beach, and two on Tory Island.
(Of Course, we came prepared). First night on the beach:

 

Magheraroarty, Camping at the Beach, County Donegal.
Magheraroarty, Camping at the Beach, County Donegal.
Magheraroarty, Camping at the Beach, County Donegal.
Magheraroarty, Camping at the Beach, Local Wildlife, County Donegal.The Local Wildlife.

Tory Island, The Hotel, by The Pier, County Donegal.Tory Island, The Hotel.

Tory Island, The Village, County Donegal.Tory Island, The Village. The next ones are from a hike around the island:

Tory Island, hike around the island, County Donegal.
Tory Island, hike around the island, County Donegal.

Tory Island, hike around the island, County Donegal.

Tory Island, hike around the island, County Donegal.Imagine what pictures you can get on this island, if the weather’s half bad. (Pray the weather calms down again, in order for the ferry to be able to go back to the main land!).

Magheraroarty, The Beach, Second Night, County Donegal.The Castle of The England Krokket Team, before moving in, second night on the beach.
– Ah, and yes. We did visit the one building close to the pier in Magheraroarty:

Magheraroarty, The Teac Coll, (The Local Bar), County Donegal.Magheraroarty, The Teac Coll, (The Local Bar).

 

 

—  —  —
I love a good Guinness. (An understatement). But, if you’re
not just all about the beer,
if you want to see a piece of real history and culture, and had to pick  o n e  place:
– Go see Skellig Michael.
—  —  —

Yes! – Here endeth the lesson! Any wrong information on this page? Anything missing? Any place crazy, or beautiful enough, that  h a v e  t o  be on this page? Please let me know!

🙂

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