Friday, August 29, 2008

Ireland In Two Days or Less

I already posted a brief notice of Amanda and myself in Ireland. Little did I know, Amanda brought the little cord for our cameras, so I actually have some pictures to post this time around. =) First, let's examine the view out of our hotel window. We're on the sixth floors (or rather, the seventh, if you count floors American style), overlooking the Shannon River (or "the River Shannon" as locals like to call it). We also have an incredible view of a huge pile of scrap metal. =)

Since this photo was taken, a ship has since arrived and they've been moving the scrap metal onto the ship. It's still an impressive little pile, however.

Then we headed off to see a little of town. The castle below is King John's Castle in Limerick. It was built about 800 years ago and had been attacked numerous times over the years, both above ground and below it through the use of tunnel warfare.

This next photo is from inside the castle. It has a nice museum in a building (not visible in this photo) and an underground area they've been excavating that us tourists can visit (again, not visible in this photo). That's Amanda in the foreground. You can recognize her from all the patches on her pack. =)

And that was pretty much it for us. We crashed particularly early, absolutely exhausted from the long flight from Seattle. The next photo is of our hotel the next morning (which is today, actually). It's the tallest hotel in Ireland if their claims are to be believed. *nodding* Our room is on the other side of the building. These people have the "pretty views" rather than the junkyard views we got.

We headed off to the bus and rail station for a bus tour of the area. We met up with a small group of people, piled into a small bus, and headed out to Bunratty Castle.
I always like to take pictures of flags when I'm in foreign countries, and Ireland is no exception. This particular flag flies over Bunratty Castle. =)

I saw Amanda taking a picture of this window--part of a "village" recreated next to the castle--and thought it looked particularly scenic and followed suit. Then she admitted--she saw it used on postcards! The cheat! It is a nice photo, however. =)

There was even some wildlife sightings.

They were in an enclosure, however, which makes spotting them particularly easy. =) Then Amanda decided to become friends with one of the donkeys.

From there, we headed out towards the Cliffs of Mohar, but the weather, alas, was not cooperating. You may recognize these cliffs as those used in the movie The Princess Bride. Upon our arrival, however, I can't say I recognized anything.

A peek of the Atlantic Ocean was there, but the cliffs were infuriatingly surrounded in fog. But alas! It started to clear!

And by the time we left, it was almost entirely clear! The weather, my friends, can change in an instant! So we were rather delighted to see the cliffs in all their glory, towering hundreds of feet out of the ocean.

The last major stop was to a desolate rocky area known as the Burren.

In case you're wondering what any of this has to do with letterboxing, I planted a letterbox there under that rock in that last photo where Amanda is standing. Amanda also planted one at Bunratty Castle. Look for the clues soon!

And once again, we are back in the hotel room at Limerick, waiting for daylight to head back to the Shannon airport and the end of our two-day whirl-wind adventure.

Carpe diem!


AD said...

The west coast of Ireland is one of my favorite places. You need to travel down the coast from the Cliffs next time. The shoreline is completely natural with rainbows appearing several times a day.

Anonymous said...

I have a friend that owns a house on the road to Bunratty Castle... hope to visit some day!


Anonymous said...

Oh the cliffs were beautiful!! I love the castles too. Now I realy need to go to Ireland! I'm dying to go!! :) Hopefully someday... Thank you for sharing your trip with us Ryan. I loved it!!

♥ Lady Lilac

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

I'm glad you're having a great adventure.
And I love the photos of the "Cliffs of Insanity!"


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