On June 7th we arrived really late in the evening in Dublin and didn’t get off the bus and checked into our hostel (Oliver St. John Gogarty’s in Temple Bar) until almost 2 am. Seems to be a trend so far!
We literally just went to sleep and when we woke up we went right back to the bus stop to take it back to the airport to grab our car rental… From the airport we headed for Waterford. It was really strange driving on the other side of the road!!! Even as a passenger, sitting in the other seat was a mind spinning experience. I felt like I was supposed to be driving yet I had no control! We adjusted quick enough though, and realized quickly how many roundabouts they use! They were kind of insane in quantity, but it did eliminate lights and stop signs so I guess there are advantages! We both agreed that Hawaiʻi drivers wouldn’t stand a chance tho!
During our week in Ireland, we stayed one night in Waterford, where we stayed with Tom at his hostel. He was the nicest guy who really cared that we had a pleasant stay and also gave us lots of local tips (I just emailed him again as I re-read this to proof read it!)! While in Waterford we visited the Viking museum, walked around the museum triangle, went into the cathedral and also got groceries for that evenings meal.
We drove back in the late afternoon and Hoapili made dinner while I read on my tablet and we shared a bottle of wine. Later that night we talked for a few hours with a guy (Adam is his name I think?) who lives in Florida. I planned to blog that night, but we were really enjoying his company! In the morning we drove to Killarney, checked into our hostel, made some lunch and then drove into the National Park. We saw a castle there from the 1400’s and took a nature trail nearby,saw a pretty waterfall, and some really lovely gardens and an arbetoreum.
We had dinner in town that night and had a traditional irish lamb stew and a beef and mash potato meal before going out that evening.
Killarney was really cute with lots of pubs and local music. In the morning we drove to Dingle and stopped at Inch beach along the way. We saw a RV pull right up to the ocean on the sand!!
We were pretty jealous but also happy you can’t do that in Hawaiʻi.
Driving the Dingle Peninsula is so amazing! Every corner you make is a new beautiful landscape of a big hill or mountain or fields full of sheep or cows or horses and everything is so green!!
We started on the Atlantic Way ring that is on Dingle peninsula and we pulled over somewhere to see something (honestly can’t remember) and Hoapili noticed the front left tire was leaking. Turns out there was a small screw in the tire!!! There weren’t any gas stations along the ring road we were planning on driving and we were closer to Dingle town verse continue driving around so we turned back to find a gas station… Surprisingly, none of the stations sold repair kits to do yourself, and we were directed to go to this car repair shop. We arrived at 1:10pm and they took a break during that hour! So we walked along dingle town for a while and made it back around 2:30 and they told us it would be another 30 minute wait. By the time it is done (plus 10 euro later), we are so exhausted and had about a 20 minute drive to the hostel so we went to check in and then also found out that the only grocery store was back in Dingle!! So tiredly, we drove back again and got some stuff to make for dinner. We mingled with a group from Ohio while we all made our dinners and hung out drinking beers around the fire until we all went to sleep. The next morning we slowly made our way to Cliffs of Moher, and walked along the cliffs admiring and taking photos for almost 3 hours and we had a packed lunch on the side of the cliff! We really enjoyed the walk and were in awe for most of it!! Plus! We finally saw some PUFFINS in the cliffs side!!! (with binoculars)
It was about 7pm or so when we left and headed to Doolin, a town Tom told us to check out for live music and good pubs. We found out on the drive into town that were was a music festival going on there that weekend and the streets were packed with people!! We made it into one very busy pub and grabbed dinner (fish and chips and a lamb burger)
and were told where to go to learn more about the festival, which was 35 euro each! We knew we had to drive to Galway that evening (1.5 hours away) to check into our hostel there and we didn’t want to pay that much for a couple hours at the most, so we just checked out another pub who had music going on and then headed out. We didn’t make it to the Galway hostel until almost mid-night I think, and we dropped our bags in the room (a 12 bed dorm which no other beds were filled yet, although we could tell all of them were occupied) and went out in search of a pint. When we made it back a little past 1am, there were still no other people back in the room!! (I love Galway). We slept in the next day and then walked around the city seeing the Spanish Arch, a ton of geese, a poster of an anti- trump rally, a rose garden next to a cathedral which I remember from the first trip I made there, the Galway Cathedral, and Salthill.
That night we went out with two people traveling together who had been doing a lot of wolfing (staying from farm to farm for free accommodation by working on the farm) and began traveling together. One from Germany and one from France. Lots of beer was drank and we definitely felt it in the morning when we had to be back in Dublin by 10am to drop the car off!! That was a really crappy car drive to say the least… After we dropped the car off and took the bus to the hostel to check in, we went out to grab some pizza, walked around a bit before returning to our rooms to take a nap. In the early evening we walked around the streets and caught most of the football (that’s soccer (;) game Ireland was playing against Sweden in the Euro 2016!!! It was really fun to be in the streets with everyone watching, screaming and singing!
We grabbed some groceries after as well as some whiskey and ginger ale (an ireland favorite) and returned to the hostel to cook dinner and get ready to go out to a few pubs where we caught some good live music (in Tempe Bar mostly). In the morning we went on the free walking tour with CJ, our cool tour guide who just graduated from Trinity College in Dublin (it was apart of the tour too!). After the tour we took the bus to the Guinness Storehouse where we spent a few hours on the self guided tour, got to do some tastings, get our perfect guinness pour certificate, and drank our complimentary pint on the gravity bar overlooking the city!
It was a really, really cool experience. And Cameron, you were right about it tasting better there than in the pubs!! We went on a pub crawl that night with the same tour company that the walking tour was with and it was really fabulous! We meet a lot of people, went to 5 different really fun bars, and got good deals with the tour for drinks and free shots in each place! The next day we left for Amsterdam!! We really loved Ireland and all the nice people, beautiful scenery, and staying in the hostels is always an experience! On the plane over to Amsterdam I sat next to and talked with a really nice guy from Galway who was starting his one month summer holiday across Europe with three of his friends. He was desperately afraid of flying (although he’s apparently flown a lot his whole life and even flew on a 13 hour flight to China before!) and told me repeatedly how thankful he was for my company and chatty-ness. Apparently I was his “rock”. Hi Cillian! Glad I could have been of assistance and hopefully we meet again!
Anyway, that was a lot of info to catch you all up on. I will try and be better at updating more periodically. We just finished our first two full days in the Netherlands and I can’t wait to tell you guys about it! Tomorrow we are going to do a hop on hop off bus and boat tour and we are excited to be off of our feet a little bit! 😉
He hoʻi mai koe!