Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Ireland Trip Day 3 and 4

The problem isn't falling asleep, it's staying asleep.  My body is still 6 hours ahead so I was up at 4:40am because my mind thought it was 10:40am.  I wish it was 10:40am. 

Onto day 3 and 4....

Day 3 we took a 2 hour drive to a town called Killarney.  The town and it's surrounding area was rich with things to do.  If I were to come back to Ireland, I would definitely invest more time here. 

I loved this tree and it's low droopy branches
We visited the Killarney State Park and a home that was built in the 1800s.  It's called the Muckross House.
The main entrance to Muckross House
Chim-chimeny, chim chimeny, chim chim cheroo.
Really beautiful.  We spent much of the day wandering and hiking the grounds and finished with a tour of the house.  The tour guide was a stuffy Irish woman who even did the eye fluttering thing while talking.  It was funny.

This inlet led to the big lake.  I love the row boats in the water. 
Queen Victoria stayed in a bedroom on this side for two nights.  The west side of the house had the view of the lake...

and had this view too.  So pretty and so green!
Joe loved these moss covered trees.

We ate dinner at Murphy's Pub.  The snooty tour guide recommended it ;)  We walked around the town for 40 minutes then made the 2 hour trek back home.

Day 4...
We were told to head to the town of Galway by a few locals.  It is one of the bigger cities in the country.  It was a 90 minute drive. 
Side note...  Before I left for Ireland, a friend asked if I spoke Irish.  I said, "they speak English in Ireland".  I laughed at my ignorance when I heard many people still speak Gaelic in Ireland!  I really had no idea.  Everything is written in both Gaelic and English... Road signs, tourist info, etc.   Galway was a city where many people still spoke their native language.

We went to a church called St. Nicholas Cathedral.  It's the largest medieval church in Ireland still in use.   Christopher Columbus prayed there in 1477.  Pretty cool!
Pic from the Cathedral website.  We didn't get a good one of the outside.

The city streets were very crowded with people.  It's a college town so many youngin's were out and about.  Other than the church shopping a bit, there wasn't much else to do there. 
On our way home, we drove past this castle (called Dunguaire). Technically called a "tower house".

I'm not a drinker and for sure not a big beer fan.  I told the waitress at Durty Nellie's the first night that I did not like Guinness.  I expected to be thrown on the first plane back to the US.  She recommended I try a beer called "Smithwicks". They pronounce it "Smithex".  I actually liked Smithwicks.  But not a pint of it.  I don't even know that I could drink a pint of water with a big heavy meal.  Joe told me I had to finish it. 


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