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Europe » Ireland » County Cork » Blarney August 28th 2019

Woensdag 28/8/2019 – Om 8.30 staat er een grote bus voor 50 personen klaar voor ons groepje van 16. Geen discussie dus van 'ik wil aan 't raam zitten'. Plaats zat ! Eerste stop Blarney Castle, een middeleeuwse versterkte woontoren in een 60 acres groot park. Alla plantentuin van Meise. De eerste bouw van het kasteel gaat terug tot 1210. Vooral bekend om zijn 'Kissing the Blarney Stone' om diplomatieke eloquentie te verwerven. Vereist wel een klim tot helemaal boven op de toren, om na een lange wachtrij, in acrobatische ruglig, gedeeltelijk door het hoogste middeleeuwse schijtgat van de woontoren, een steen in de buitenmuur te kussen. Nou moe ! Ik bekijk het wel van beneden. Tweede stop Cork. Al eens culturele hoofdstad van Europa. Maar dat was Mons ook al eens. Wel met een prachtige ... read more
Blarney Castle
Blarney Castle
Blarney Castle

Europe » Ireland » County Kerry » Sneem August 28th 2019

Breakfast at the Sneem Hotel was pretty great and the view was even better! This village is situated in the Ring of Kerry, nestled between mountains and coastlines and is separated by the Sneem River. A bridge connects the village which is the hometown of Batt Burns our guide and storyteller. It is quite a find for quaint, flavorful Irish experiences. Jay, another storyteller in our group and the chief labyrinth builder, set out to build a labyrinth and took some of the group through the village near the river. D.J. and I set out to discover Sneem. We hiked to “The Way the Fairies Went”, a small Pyramid and other stone structure garden, a senses garden with flowers, a maze and an old church. Peter, also in our tour group, joined us at one point ... read more
Breakfast with a view
The View
Lawn Labrynth

Europe » Ireland » County Wexford » New Ross August 27th 2019

Dinsdag 27/8/2019 Verplaatsing van Rosslare naar Blarney, iets ten noorden van Cork, grote stad in het zuiden van Ierland, die we volgende dagen gaan verkennen. Mijn eerste 200 km links rijden zit er hiermee op. Als iedereen zoals verondersteld wordt, links blijft rijden, valt dat nogal mee. Ons eerste ronde punt langs links was wel even spannend. Voorrangsverkeer komt er hier van rechts ! Logisch toch. Onderweg in het stadje New Ross, bezoek gebracht aan de 'Dunbrody Famine Ship' replica van de historische driemaster, een van de vrachtzeilschepen waarmee 150 jaar geleden meer dan een miljoen Ieren massaal de hongersnood ontvluchtten door uit te wijken naar de nieuwe wereld. Overtochten duurden 5 tot 10 weken, met buiten de bemanning tot 300 passagiers aan boord in erbarmelijke toestanden. Velen overleefden die tochten niet. Economische vluchtelingen dus. Wel ... read more
Bovendek van de Dunbrody
Gids-actrice evoceert het verblijf 2de klaspassagiers.
Gids-actrice evoceert het leven van 1e klas passagiers

Europe » Ireland » County Galway » Connemara August 27th 2019

In a winding turn on a road in Connemara a majestic abbey raises her head: the Kylemore Abbey. A hunting lodge originally stood where the Abbey is today. We toured this castle that was created for Mitchell Henry’s wife, Margaret, after 1850. The Abbey currently is the home of Benedictine nuns who have been apart of Kylemore since 1920. It also was once an International Boarding School. Down a rather long path, we stepped into the Walled Gardens, a six-acre garden that uniquely uses plants and flowers introduced to Ireland before 1901. It’s a spectacular display of floral specimens including herbs. There was a big porker hanging on one side of the gardens and after we met her, Kathy who is on tour with us, meandered with me through the fairy garden, and then many of ... read more
Kylemore Abbey

Europe » Ireland » County Dublin » Malahide August 27th 2019

We start our trip on a bit of a kerfuffle. Checking in online the night before, we discover that the extra-leg-room seats on the Toronto-Dublin leg that we had reserved and paid for back in April have disappeared. A call to Air Canada reveals the we were side-swiped by the Boeing Max 8 debacle. The plane had been changed from a Max 8 to an Airbus, which caused the seat reservations to evaporate. Why Air Canada couldn't have alerted us to this problem so we could have reacted earlier is a mystery to me. Anyway, the agent on the phone is able to assign us some other seats with extra leg room, although they are inferior in our opinion to what we had originally reserved. Bummer. At the Ottawa airport, we relate our sad story to ... read more
Guinness Truck
Estuary

Europe » Ireland » County Kerry » Sneem August 27th 2019

It was a rainy morning as we began our day headed toward the Cliffs of Moher. We passed Dunleavy castle, and when we arrived at the Cliffs ... there was a steady, moderate rain - we had reached the picturesque, popular cliffs with a heavy cloud of fog settling in for the morning. That didn’t deter me though, because I was determined to get something from the experience. While many people were headed into the exhibit indoors, I was curious and so I journeyed out to the cliffs. As I got closer to the water, I was able to get a few photos; however, the visibility was almost nil. Walking from one side to the other for a clearer perspective, a cow’s look pretty much said it all ... “It’s not a good day for this ... read more
Are you guys serious? Clouds = No View

Europe » Ireland » County Mayo » Westport August 25th 2019

Our weekend began at a home named the Westport House, a beautiful home and gardens that was built upon the foundations of one of many castles that belonged to the famous Irish Pirate Queen of Connacht... Grace O’Malley. The original home was built by a great-great granddaughter of O’Malley. I immediately liked the tale of Grace, apparently she didn’t take any “umph“ from anybody and if they didn’t like what she thought she would just “take their head off” literally... LOL. In the home... the front hall was magnificent and included vaulted ceilings, a marble staircase and Waterford cut glass chandeliers. The welcome centerpiece was a marbled mythological Angel, where family tradition was to shake the angel’s hand for good luck upon returning from trips or visiting. What house would be complete without your typical dungeon, ... read more
Kerry and Laura at The Westport House
Grace O’Malley the Pirate Queen
Croagh Patrick mountain

Europe » Ireland » County Dublin » Dublin August 23rd 2019

August 19, 2019 – Dublin, Ireland – Weather: 62°F/17°C, mix of sun and cloud, chance of rain 60%, wind 16 mph, humidity 66° We arrived in Dublin early this morning as the Captain had announced last evening that he wanted to be able to do his maneuvering at the dock while there was a high tide. While this portion of the habour can accept deep draft ships he wanted to ensure that there was enough water under the keel to turn the ship around as he moved into the pier. Due to the fact that the River Liffey is crossed by many low level bridges cruise ships are forced to dock out in the container port area, which is also shared with the ferries that head over to England. Dublin is both the capital and most ... read more
2_Linen wall art
3_The Long Room
4_Books to the ceiling

Europe » Ireland » County Mayo » Westport August 23rd 2019

Early take off this morning - and when I came downstairs to catch our bus I found someone’s hiking boots parked by the exit. These were not your normal hiking boots, these boots had obviously seen some giant cliffs, some terrifying bogs... and/or they belonged to our co-host Tom McDermott who had experienced the blow out yesterday on the trail... but thanks to a clever duct-taping job, he had prevailed, conquered the crocs, beat the odds AND survived his first hike of this tour! Way to hang in their laddie 😘 Today’s journey is taking us across the country from Dublin to Westport. Batt, our Irish host storyteller is weaving a story about the potato famine as we make our first stop in Strokestown Park. This little burg is home to the Irish National Famine Museum. ... read more
Batt, our storyteller, tells a tale of the potato famine.
Garden entrance.

Europe » Ireland » County Wicklow » Glendalough August 22nd 2019

This morning we began with an Irish breakfast of eggs, heavy ham and sausage, or porridge and fruit... I had the latter. Once out the door of our hotel we walked with Father Michael through The Gateway into one of Ireland’s most important monastic sites right next to our Glendalough Hotel. This early Christian monastic settlement was founded by St. Kevin in the 6th century. The round tower. A bell tower was built almost 1,000 years ago by the monks of St. Kevin’s monastery, it was also used as a place for refuge for monks and as a lookout tower. We happened upon the remains of the Cathedral, several churches and a structure known as the Priest House, the name is derived from an 18th century of bringing priests to be readied for burial and also ... read more
The Round Tower
Close up of the Round Tower




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