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Published: April 14th 2015
The Wicklow Mountains are considered the garden of Ireland and for good reason. When people think of Ireland, everyone thinks of going to the west coast and seeing the Cliffs of Moher and Ring of Kerry, but I would say that missing out on the Wicklow Mountains and Glendalough is a big mistake. The mountains are one of the most beautiful places in Ireland. I would rank it my number 2 favorite behind the most impressive Dingle Peninsula. That's right, I think it is better than the famous Ring of Kerry. My tour through the Wicklow Mountains and onto Glendalough was great and made even better by the fabulous tour guide. On the tour, I saw the tallest waterfall in Ireland. We also saw were scenes for P.S. I love You were shot and Braveheart. Yes, Braveheart, the movie all about the famous William Wallace trying to gain independence for Scotland was actually shot in Ireland. Some scenes of Braveheart were shot by a private lough called Lough Tay. We were able to look out over the lough and see all down the valley that the lough sits in. The lough is currently owned by a member of the Guinness family and the lake actually looks like an upside down pint of Guinness. Even in nature, one can find alcohol here in Ireland. It was here, looking over the lake that we enjoyed, as a group, a shot of the famous Jameson Irish Whiskey that was included in the tour. No that was not the only reason I used this tour company, but it may have played a role. After Lough Tay we continued around the area and I felt like I was back in Scotland, understanding why they shot Braveheart here. Our last stop and the greatest stop was Glendalough, the valley of two lakes. The ruins of the old monastery still stand for those made of stone, but it is the scenery that attracts so many people. It is no wonder that St. Kevin chose to live here as a hermit back in the early 500s. We were able to walk around the lower and upper lake and take in all the views the earth had to give us. It was the highlight of the tour. We even saw a deer and you would have thought these people were looking at Jesus himself. The deer in the scene and at the time was exciting, but they look the same as the ones we have in Illinois. Nonetheless, it was a nice way to end the tour. The Wild Wicklow Mountains get two thumbs up from me and is highly recommended to visit. It would be hard not to fall in love!
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