Friday, October 26, 2012

Ireland - Day 5

This was probably my favorite day of the trip.  Soon you'll see why.

We woke up in Limerick and got on the road for our day trip to the Cliffs of Moher. Our number one "must-see" sight in Ireland and about an hour and a half from our hotel.  To make things easy, we snacked on cereal in car along route.

Cliffs of Moher is on the Atlantic coast. The Cliffs themselves are about 700 feet tall and home to many birds. The area on the edge of the cliffs is managed/maintained by the Heritage group, which operated the majority of tourist spots in Ireland (You can purchase a Heritage Card for discounts/free admission to sites.  We opted against this).  Admission for the Cliffs is $6eu per adult (and like Rock of Cashel and Blarney Castle, cash only). A solo artist greeted us with his fife as we arrived. It gave the full effect to "Holy crap, we're in Ireland!"
 
There is a visitor's center complete with museum, cafe, restrooms, 3D video and gift shop on the grounds as well; which was cleverly built into the hillside. 
 
That's cool right?  Well, wait until you see this.
  


Water sprayed up on us from below

Cement fences lined the perimeter to keep anyone from falling off

 
Obrien's Tower (you could climb this for $3eu)

Pictures cannot justify the beauty

 

Not only were the Cliffs and sea gorgeous, the surrounding landscape also caught my eye.
 
 
 
 
 
Could Ireland be any prettier?  Well maybe.  After spending our time at the Cliffs of Moher, we decided to check out the tiny town of Doolin just 10 minutes north of the Cliffs..  Originally we'd wanted to take a boat to the Aran Islands (just off the coast of the Cliffs) but due to on-again-off-again rain, we nixed that idea. However, along the way, we got detoured.
 
The landscape is just too pretty not to stop and admire.  
Driving down the rode above, we found a small parking lot near the water's edge and got out to explore.  This could have been the most fun of the day.  In the middle of a foreign country (well, technically on its coast), with no one to know where we are, exploring a beautiful landscape with some of our best friends.
Watching the rains approach the Cliffs


 






 

 
 
The guys exploring ahead
 Yet again, the landscape was just as mystifying as the sea.
 

 
After picking our jaws up off the ground, we proceeds to navigate to Doolin.  Supposedly, Doolin was once a musical Mecca. To us, it was very small. We stopped in O'Connors Pub, one of the oldest, for a drink and to warm up (the wind and rain took it's toll upon us).
 
Inside we were baffled to find this sticker, which represents our small hometown community.
 
 
After a pint and browsing the few stores (we found some delicious fudge and Ben bought a handmade leather bracelet), we got back on the road to Limerick.  Along the way we saw a rainbow. Actually, make that a double rainbow. 
 
 After making it back to Limerick, we decided we'd at least give the town a chance.  Lucky for us, Fodor's guide book recommended Locke Bar, which happened to be around the corner from our hotel and is rated as the #1 tourist bar in Limerick (which could be a good or bad thing, but we welcomed that as a good sign).  We asked concierge and she said she had lived in Limerick her whole life and the part of town we were in was fine for walking about at night. We camped up at Locke's pub for the rest of the evening for beer, food, and live music. 

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3 comments:

  1. Wow! You took some amazing photos at the Cliffs of Moher and the surrounding area.

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  2. Makes me want to visit them again!
    You were very lucky with the weather sometimes there can be very low visability due to the mist.
    Did you visit Lisdoonvarna (where the famous matchmaking festival takes place). It is quite close to the Cliffs.

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