Thursday, October 25 - Another early morning, but we got to the bus pickup point with enough time! Ah-ha! We have time for Starbucks!..... and they were closed with a huge line-up outside waiting. Damn...Foiled again! We got on the bus, and it was much busier today. We fell asleep again awaiting our first rest stop, and what a rest stop! Between Dublin and Limerick is a magical place called Barack Obama Plaza. Upon entering we passed a bronze statue of Michelle and Obama waving us in. We got our coffee after walking through the entrance and viewing all the Obama Artwork. By this time the sun had finally risen and we could see our surroundings. The middle of Ireland is gorgeous; rolling hills, all the stone fences for the pastures.
We hit a little traffic jam when we were beside the River Shannon. Apparently a truck got stuck under a too low bridge. While sitting stationary, our tour guide (who was amazing by the way, Jennifer was her name I think) told us of Irish Folklores and provided us entertainment by playing music from artists who were from the area. At this point, around the river Shannon, we listened to the Cranberries and she told us how they were from the area.
To get a sense of how high the cliffs are, you could see two villages in the distance and this was the view of one of them. The sense of space from the views here are incredible. Such a huge expanse of land and in parts of it you can see for miles and miles, until the next rolling hill/mountain.
Continuing up the path was a look out tower. We headed in that direction. Once we got there we saw that it was an additional fee of 2 Euro's to go up to the top of it. Why not? So we climbed up the shallow spiral staircase to get the view from this point. Best 2 Euros spent!
Moving on from the tower we continued north up the coast. The nice, wide level stone pathways gave way to dirt paths worn down by who knows how many hundreds of thousands of foot prints? These paths were so incredibly close to the edge. I'm not afraid of heights but this made me feel quite jelly-legged. The rope bridge yesterday was nothing in comparison to this!
Continuing up North along the coast, our next stop on the way to Galway was a place called The Burren. It looked like a Lunar landscape. It's an immensely huge landscape of limestone. Sparse with vegetation, I felt like I was on another planet. Looking down in between all the rocks was a living maze of Ivy! We stayed here only 15 minutes. The bus ride from this point to Galway was so treacherous! Tiny roads literally right on the edge of a cliff drop into the Atlantic. Sarah had the window seat so she felt extremely uncomfortable most of the way.
Once we reached Galway we only had around an hour to explore, which is not a lot of time. We walked to the museum on the water to use the facilities and then went back up one of the main streets towards Murphy's Ice Cream shop. We had fun chatting in our 'Canadian Accent' to get a few laughs from the friendly servers. I got the 'Dingle Gin Ice-cream' and Sarah got 'Sea Salt and Coffee'. It was really good. We then passed a young fellow tap dancing for change and popped into the original Claddagh Jewellers.
When we got back and freshened up in our room, it was close to 9pm. Did you know the Bars in Ireland stop serving food around 8pm? We didn't find many places close to the hotel that were serving dinner but we went into the Lincoln Inn around the corner. The server said that he could make us a pizza, so we settled down and enjoyed our Guinness. There was a group of gentlemen playing music at their table. It was great entertainment - our first live music at a bar. After enjoying our low key relaxing evening we headed back to our room, where we were looking forward to sleeping in. Our first tour tomorrow isn't until later on in the morning.
- 31 weeks Smoke-free!
- 3 days until my hike with Team Diabetes at Wicklow Mountain !!!!!!
- We didn't fall off the Cliffs of Moher!
Thanks for checking in!
I will be posting 4 more blog posts.
Colleen lives in Arnprior and is working to control her Type 2 Diabetes by training and Fundraising for the 2018 SSE Airtricity Wicklow Mountain Hike in Ireland with Team Diabetes.