Now lets get to the meat of our Irish weekend.
If you haven’t read about our time in Dublin, that’s where the story starts and ends.
After one night in Dublin, we rented a car and set out toward the coast. In search of green fields, big skies, a bustling historic town and the edge of the earth.
We found all that and more.
David is the driver between us but driving on the left side of the road in a manual transmission car isn’t our idea of a relaxing holiday drive. We opted for an automatic and bee-lined for Galway.
Galway is a university town on the West coast of Ireland. We arrived on a sunny afternoon and were greeted with song and dance in the town square. What a welcome!
In fact, it looked like a shoot for a music video. A fun one actually. Otherwise I don’t think Galwanians are typically dressed like this.
The clouds rolled in and it poured. So we ducked into McDonaght’s for fish and chips and some Galway oysters.
In typical Irish weather fashion, it cleared up once again and we soaked up the sun with some delicious lattes at Coffeewerk + Press. We people watched. Laughed at quirky signs. Let the afternoon pass us by. Admiring the brightly colours buildings: a permanent rainbow after the rain.
Later that night, we strolled around in search for a pub for a pre-dinner beer. Most were packed as there was a rugby match going on. We tucked into one and found two cozy seats in a corner, underneath a TV screen. Hence why they were empty. We sat drinking our Guinness and Hooker beer watching the fans react to plays and missed chances. A friendly local started chatting with us: telling us about the game, sharing stories of his Irish experience and and the Galway area.
TripAdvisor pointed us to Oscar’s Seafood Bistro for one of the best seafood dinners we’ve ever had. We ended the night back in our B&B in Kinvarra after a long day but satisfying day.
The forecast was promising but clouds were on the way. We drove south to the Cliffs of Moher. A must-see. Even in bad weather. We bypassed the mega parking lot near the interpretation centre and found a 2 euro parking lot further south in Mullaghroe North. We started the 5km cliff side hike on the Burren Trail to get to the interpretation centre. It was a quieter start to the trek with uninterrupted views of the cliffs.
We were treated to sunny skies and little wind. And good thing about little wind… it’s a long way down from the edge of the cliffs. If someone told me that was the edge of the earth, I could have believed them.
The secure and well marked path brought us up to O’Briens Tower and the main visitor centre. By then we were just too tired to walk back so we hopped on the shuttle bus for 8 euros each which took us back to the car park.
After a long day we stayed in Kinvarra for the evening. It’s a small coastal town with a restaurant and a pub. We heard the live music Coming from the pub and it was busy for a Sunday afternoon. Families and friends gathered around beers and live traditional music. It felt like a truly authentic Irish experience. It was the moment my opinion changed of pubs. I can see the atmosphere and emotion others try to recreate in Irish pubs overseas. I became a pub convert … But only when in Ireland.
Dinner that night was simple and uninspiring. We were happy to have a low key Irish experience after the fantastic two days on the coast.
We zipped through the weekend, taking in and seeing as much as we could. Of course more time in Dublin and Galway would have been great but we do with what we have. And I’m happy we didn’t pass up the chance to go even after the blogging conference was canceled. There’s usually a silver lining when things don’t go as planned. For us it was the chance to explore Galway and the Cliffs of Moher. A place we would have never thought to visit. And now we’d gladly go back to the Emerald Isle one day to see what other treasures it holds. And perhaps find that pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.