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Published: January 27th 2008
Stace & Justin get friendly with King Puck.
Well welcome to our first blog! We have just arrived in London.....phew. We are currently living with JK & Rach (just for 3 weeks, as they are leaving for Australia!) until we get settled in.....but we are leaving agin - for our first trip! We thought we would take the opportunity to explore some of Southern Ireland with Justin and Rach as none of us had been.
Friday 23rd Feb 2007
We decided to avoid the cities and opted for more scenic and rural areas of Ireland. We flew into Shannon at 11pm which is a smaller town located towards the south-west corner of the country. After collecting our hire car we headed to our hotel to rest up before 3 days of hard-core exploration!
Saturday 24th Feb 2007
We decided to have breakfast in the hotel restaurant which turned out to be a Chinese restaurant that served a hearty Irish breakfast including black pudding (sausage made by cooking animal blood with a filler until it is thick enough to congeal when cooled)! Bellies full we hit the open road heading north to the Cliffs of Moher. These cliffs are quite spectacular
All of us at the Cliffs of Moher
30 knot winds, rain, 10 degrees...lovely!
- 220m high with a sheer drop into the ocean. After avoiding the parking attendant (the boys sweet talked her) we headed back south via Limerick and grabed some lunch in a local supermarket.
We drove on to Tralee where we had planned to stay overnight, however the National Ballroom Championships were on and the entire town was booked out! So we moved onto Killarney where we found a wonderful B&B. Killarney is located at the start of the Ring of Kerry so served as a good base for the next day's travel.
That night we headed into town to find a pub and watch the rugby (England V Ireland). We stumbled on a great pub where we drank Guinness and watched England get their asses whooped by Ireland in the 6 Nations comp. It was a match with alot of history and passion behind it and the 46 - 13 victory ensured a fantastic Guinness filled evening. We moved on from here to another pub where there was a traditional Irish band playing! We were so inspired we bought their CD and have had the songs in our heads ever since!
Sunday 25th Feb 2007
2 seconds after this was taken, it poured with rain.
A hearty home-cooked breakfast helped to clear the cobwebs from the night before. We then saddled up and started our drive around the Ring of Kerry. The 'ring' is essentially a 180 km ring road that takes in some of Irelands best scenery and small towns. The first town was Killogrin where Stacy decided to ride "King Puck" - a statue of a goat. The beautiful beach of Rossbeigh was next. We felt adventurous so we decided to climb a hill for a better view. Once we reached the top the wind was incredible - about 40 knots! But the view was breathtaking, so well worth it.
At the next town - Cahersiveen - we bought our own scones, cream and jam and had a little picnic within the Ballycarberry Castle ruins. The Castle was built in 1568 and you can see the condition it was in in the pics.
Waterville beach was the next stop. This is one of the best beaches in Ireland and the boys seemed suitably impressed as the surf was quite good. From here we wound our way up a small one-track road to Stague Fort which is 2,500yrs old and the
Guiness & Rugby in Killarney
Rach, Erin & Stace at the local pub. England was flogged by Ireland!
finest example of a stone fort in Ireland. Amazingly none of these historical sights were fenced or manned by attendants asking for entry fees. You simply wander in and have a look around while the sheep go about their business! From some of the photos we took you might think they should have security!! From here we stopped in the colourful village of Sneem for cheese, bickies and petrol. In this town the houses and shops have been brightly painted in different colours.
After a long day it was time to find a cosy B&B for the night, which we did in Kenmare. Food however was a little harder to find being the 'low' season. Most restaurants were closed so we ended up having a burger at the local take away before heading back to the B&B to play some cards and have a few drinks. Can I just add that Erin and Rach gave Stacy and Justin a whooping...... ("Whatever" - Justin).
Monday 26th Feb 2007
Today we drove down the Dingle Penninsula which has amazing roads and scenery along the coast. The only problem was visability - we were in the clouds most of the day; but this gave the little fishing villages and surronding scenery an eerie dramatic feeling. Heading back towards Shannon Airport, we stopped off for a pub dinner and warmed up next to the open fire. Before we knew it it was time to hit the airport for our flight back to London.
Whilst 3 days is never enough, we covered a lot of ground and saw some fantastic countryside - highly recommended as a short break from London. We had a fantastic time with JK & Rach! What a great first trip!
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