This is Part 3 of the series “Ireland Road trip Itinerary”.
We are leaving The Ring of Kerry and head up to The Cliffs of Moher and Galway – the city I fell in love with.
A few years ago The Mr and I decided to move abroad to serve where the need is greater. Read more about it at “We’re moving to Ireland!” and “What is a Need Greater?” That’s why in 2017 we spent 2 weeks in Ireland, to see if we actually like the country we might call home soon. Here is a Recap of our Road trip through the country.
DAY 11 TRALEE
For the sake of completeness we need to talk about Tralee. We stayed in this little town on our way to the Cliffs of Moher and further to Galway. Although we didn’t have much time in this town it was amazing how many crazy and weird experiences we made.
First, the hostel we stayed in was the by far the worst. It smelled like feet in the entire house, the people staying with us were weird and we had the urge to sleep with one eye open.
Second, the city looked like and felt like a ghost town. There was absolutely nobody on the street except weird old guys and a group of 40+ girls on hens night.
Third, the food there was horrible. We had only one chance at all to get some food, which was a Chinese restaurant. The prices were far too high, probably because of the lack of other opportunities. And finally the food was just horrible, the consistency like cartilage and a taste like paper.
If you ever find yourselves in Tralee: Run, for God‘s sake, run!
DAY 12-13 GALWAY
Cliffs of Moher
When planning the various locations of our holiday, the “Ciffs of Moher” were a must to visit. The weather forecast initially promised rain, but until midday the clouds were gone and we had a beautiful sight of the Cliffs.
Throughout our holiday we actually even saw rain twice. Once on our first night in Ireland and on the second to last day for about 10 minutes. The rest of our 2 week road trip the temperature was about 25 degrees Celsius and sunshine. No wonder we all got sunburnt half way through.
For making pictures, the weather was perfect of course.
The Cliffs of Moher are a very popular tourist location, which we could really experience firsthand. It was really crowded and this once we really felt like actual tourists. At least we didn’t wear white socks and sandals, otherwise we would have confirmed all clichés.
Along the Cliffs there is a secured path nearly all the way. Although it wast really hard to recognize, since no one was walking there. You really feel weird being the only one walking on the way you should walk. Sounds familiar? 🙂
The Boys were already pretty exhausted and longed for a pint in the pub, while I was too exited to sit. So I wandered a little through the city, down along the river, across many bridges, visited the West End and back again. I immediately fell in love with the city. Surely the perfect weather helped, but what amazed me was the attitude of the people. The minute the sun was out, there were people everywhere. Sitting outside the cafés and pubs, alongside the river and in the public places. This really reminded us of the city we now live in.
At home, when the first spring days arrive, people cannot stay home. We have one square in town, on most days you cannot even find a place to sit on the ground in the evenings. We have a river and many bridges, even an island in the middle where people sit all evening. Our city has a lot of tourists and students due to our university, but it is still small enough to feel like home.
We are very curious to leave home behind and start an adventure in Ireland, but somehow it would comfort me to be in a place I recognize some traits.
DAY 13 ROAD TO DUBLIN
When visiting Ireland it was clear to us that we need to visit at least one whiskey distillery. We considered a few, but finally decided on taking a tour in Kilbeggan, since it is a relatively small one. We are not new to Whiskey and we do have some bottles of both Scotch and Irish Whiskey at home.
The tour was amazing. They told us about the history, the way of making whiskey, the different brands of Kilbeggan and how the Whiskey is stored on the grounds. When standing inside a Storehouse, they always tell you about “the Angel’s Share”.
Everyone knows Whiskey is stored in wood barrels, which absorb unpleasant aspects of distillery, for example sulfur, and give some of its own flavors back. However, due to the porousness of the barrel, some of the liquor will disappear during the aging process. That leads to a loss of about 2% of the total volume each year. Because that liquid would evaporate into heaven, it is called “the Angel’s Share”. An example: a twelve-year-old whiskey could loose about 24% of the initial volume.
All in all it was a wonderful time and I can recommend visiting.
The Wonderful Barn
The last stop on our round trip through Ireland led us to another remote location, where we found “The Wonderful Barn”. We were the only ones walking around the barn, just a few locals it’s their dogs were keeping us company.
The barn was built in 1743 and until now, no one really knows for which purpose. Several purposes were discussed including the use of a dovecote, for sport shooting or maybe even just a folly (a building primarily for decoration). The fact that the barn was build right after the big famine in 1740 and 1741 supports the use as a granary .
Whatever the purpose was, it is one of the great abandoned places in Ireland you can actually visit legally.
We did have some other abandoned places in mind we wanted to visit initially, but failed mostly at a gate or private road we weren’t allowed to enter.
In the end Ireland is definitely worth a visit. I enjoyed the weather (although pretty warm), the landscape, the amazing shades of green and the hospitality of the locals. If you ever want to know more or need advice for your own holiday, feel free to contact me. After all we are going to live there pretty soon (“We’re moving to Ireland!”)and will get to know a lot more than we do now.