Friday, June 27, 2008

Sally Gap, Wicklow, Ireland

On our way from Waterford to Dublin, we stopped at the Wicklow Mountains National Park visitor's center and asked them for the "senic route" to Dublin. We got what we asked for. They send us through Sally Gap. Perhaps we should have included "wide roads" in our request.

When we were stopped at the waterfall in the photos below, a British couple stopped as well. They asked us if we were heading North or South. When we replied that we were going North to Dublin they exclaimed how thick the fog was. The fog in front of us was so thick that the Brits were amazed!

At one point we met a logging truck on a road not more than 10 feet wide. We sat there and waved our arms at each other for at least 5 minutes. Finally, I gave in and started backing up. Whew!

Slide show

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Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Waterford Marina, Waterford, Ireland

In Waterford, we stayed at the Waterford Marina. Its name fits it well as it was directly on the water.

There were swans in the quay just outside the hotel.

There was free parking and we just walked to dinner at The Wine Vault on High Street. There are reports that it is no longer a restaurant. That's a shame because we really enjoyed it.

Their web site is here.

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Saturday, June 21, 2008

Waterford Crystal Factory, Waterford, Ireland

When we arrived in Waterford, we went directly to the Waterford Crystal Factory. They have a nice visitor center with a shop at the end of the tour. While there isn't a real discount, there are pieces there that you can't get in the store and you save the VAT if you ship it back to the US. We did some real damage there and had it shipped home.

Their web site is here.

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Saturday, June 14, 2008

Tomasin's Bar, Stradbally, Kerry, Ireland

Annette at Shores Country House wasn't serving dinner the night we were there so we asked her for a recommendation. She sent us down the road to Tomasin's Bar in nearby Stradbally.

Tomasin's is just a little neighborhood (not much of a neighborhood by the way) pub. There weren't many people in there that evening. Except for us they were locals.

The food was great and the service was like your mother was serving you in her kitchen.

Here's their website.

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Tuesday, June 10, 2008

McDonalds, Cork, Ireland

After a soggy morning at Blarney Castle, we were ready for some American hamburgers. On the way out to the castle, we had passed a McDonalds.

We spotted it on the way back and opted for burgers and fries.

If you look closely at the satellite image, you may be able to see the blue BMW going the wrong way through the drive-through. That's us.

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Friday, June 06, 2008

Blarney Castle, Blarney, Cork, Ireland

Blarney Castle is just outside Cork. Everybody has heard the story of kissing the Blarney Stone. While most of our crowd kissed it, I passed on the opportunity choosing to take the pictures instead.

There is a fascinating legend regarding the actual Blarney Stone. A wikipedia article suggests that Robert the Bruce of Scotland gave a portion of the Stone of Scone to the king of Ireland who then put it into Blarney Castle.
Another tradition holds that, in gratitude for Irish support at the battle of Bannockburn (1314), Robert the Bruce gave a portion of the stone to Cormac McCarthy, king of Munster. Installed at McCarthy's stronghold, Blarney Castle, it became the Blarney Stone.
The wikipedia article is here and their web site is here.

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