April 2nd, 2009- Ring of Kerry

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April 2nd 2009
Published: April 4th 2009
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Today we woke up in our tiny little room in our Georgian House Hostel. The accomodations were adequate and we each showered and enjoyed the complimentary breakfast before hitting the road to see the Ring of Kerry. We were close to the start of the loop and it only took us a short car ride to start seeing the hills of Kerry. Our first stop of the day was in Cahersiveen where we found some ancient ring forts. We were all amazed by the contstruction of these forts. The forts are said to be 1000 years old and constructed without any mortar. We enjoyed walking on the top of the ring and then we heade back up the road to some castle ruins we had seen on the way to the forts. Tara was very excited to explore the castle, and Jessica and I stayed back to take some photographs from afar. Soon, we could hear Tara calling for us and we were glad that she did. She was actually able to climb up to the second level of the castle and she was sitting in a window waving to us. Jessica and I took some pictures of here and then spent some time climbing up the ruins and taking more pictures. We all agreed that this was the best castle we had seen to date. We hoped back in the car and winded our way around the ring stoping at several spots to take photographs and take in the lovely views. We were in Kenmare around 1:30 and took some time to do some retail therapy. We each found some items to take home with us and enjoyed some time outside of the car. We then made a decision to finish the loop by driving from Kenmare to Killarney thru the Killarney national park. Our first stop was the Kissane Sheep farm, where we pulled in despite the sign saying they were not open. We were not disappointed. Sean stepped out of the house to inform us that they were not open, but then offered to show us some lambs. As soon as we walked into the barn, we realized that there were a few lambs that were less than an hour old. We had a good time talking to Sean and asking lots of questions. One question I specifically asked was about the lack of sheep crossing the road on the Ring of Kerry. Sean told me that in the last five years a lot had changed. The ring of kerry roads were widened and fences were constructed to keep the sheep out of the road... which is a double edged sword. It protects the sheep from being hit, but it also limits their movement and they are not able to move away from predators and to other fields. I was disappointed to here that the farm had been facing trouble with people actually hitting the sheep. We enjoyed our stop and chat with Sean and soon we were off to see some of the beautiful views in the national park. We made several photo stops and found ourselves in Killarney about an hour later. Once in Killarney we took a gawk at Muckross house and tried to find the magical island that Kristin had described to Tara. We finally found the place to rent the boats but it was closed. The girls agreed that Killarney was very touristy, so we got ourselves back in the car and took the road back to Kenmare. We checked ourselves into the Kermare lodge hostel and we were all surprised by the spacious room and what we called luxury accomodations (in comparision). We quickly unloaded the car and headed to the Horseshoe restuarant for dinner. We splurged tonight and we were all happy that we did. The food was delicious. After dinner we headed back across the street to the P.F. McCarthy pub and restaurant. We each grabbed our beverage of choice and started an intense game of scrabble. Jessica ended up befriending a French Sommelier who was working in the town. We will call him Marcus(because we could not understand his real name due to his thick accent). Marcus was trying to help Jessica with some words. Marcus was joined by a group from France and they were living vicariously thru our game. At one point, for lack of any other word opportunties, Tara laid down a American slang curse word... this sent the French folks into a tizy...they could not understand the word and we did not want to explain it in mixed company. As the board filled and the clock ticked away, we decided to end the game just before last call at the pub. Emily walked away victorious (Ed would be so proud). We stopped at one other pub on our way back to the hostel before turning in for the night.

Additional photos below
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5th April 2009

Thanks for sharing - looks like you ladies are having a great time and I can't wait to see the rest of your photos when you get back!
6th April 2009

COOL Castle!
Wow! I dont remember seeing this castle!! you guys are seeing prime stuff! I dont think I can adhere to my "every 5 years Ill go back to Ireland" rule...I want to go again now! :) glad you checked out Kenmare...that's where I want to stay next time. and i love Killarney National Park..too bad too many tourists discovered Killarney though...oh well...they have good taste I guess. way to go on the pub hopping :)
8th April 2009

hello from london
hey emily, i'm very jealous of your trip especially after reading & seeing all the photos! i did the ring of kerry tour with mum over easter break a few years ago and we loved it!! hope the weather stays nice for you, here in London it's not so great at the moment, xx

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