Created by KeefH Web Designs, June 9th, 2023, 8.49 AM
A Travel Blog by KeefH Web Designs Motorhome trip No54: May 10th - 31st 2023
NOTTS-> Beeston Castle, Holyhead, Dublin, Then traverse the whole of the outside of Ireland, both Northern Ireland and Eire, finishing back in Dublin port, ferry to Holyhead (again) then Home, A Mixture of Camping Europe sites, Caravan and Motorhome Club Sites (M&CC site), Brit stops and ACSI affiliated -> NOTTS 2158 miles
Prefer to listen than read a blog, click HERE for the audiobook.
A Travel Blog of our trip to Ireland between 10th and 31st of May 2023. 3 lovely weeks, 22 Days in the Wendy House motorhome, travelling right the way around the Irish "continent". So many fabulous views, almost too many to chose from but our highlight I guess overall was achieving finishing the Wild Atlantic Way. Our detailed diary of exploits is included under each of the 3 weeks travels and each day is accompanied by a slideshow with U2 music, well how could I not. It was interesting that in Dungarven town there was a picture of U2 on a visit to their favourite barber who looked more like Billy Gibbons of ZZ Top. #smile We travelled in all just over 2000 miles and loved every moment of it. However having traversed the whole of the Wild Atlantic Way and been all the way around it is unlikely we will sadly ever return, too many other places in the world to "discover" but you can never say never! On reflection once again it surprised us that there is no evidence or checks for border crossing between Eire and Northern Ireland and vice versa. Only an indicator on the Sat nav we have crossed over on the way up (DAY3) showing miles instead of kilometers and nothing as we crossed Lough Foyle by ferry , extremely weird when one considers Stormont parliament won't sit until Brexit issues are sorted, but what do I know? #justsayin Must say May is a great month to chose for all the lovely flowering gorse, azaleas and rhododendrons.
The day by day calendar to help give an overview of the detailed given under weeks 1 to 3. One thing I can say is pre trip i estimated the travel distance just under 1000 miles, the reality was more like double, mostly because of the 3 peninsulas, Dingle, Ring of Kerry and béara but also because the Wild Atlantic Way really is the longest coastal route in the world (allegedly) although I dont know how that compares to Australia's coastal route which in fairness in many places you can't get to the edge of so maybe the boast is true! #tobeproved
Created using AI by KeefH Web Designs, see what fun Annie and I had!
And now a reel / short created using AI #geek
THE WILD ATLANTIC WAY
Stretching from Malin Head in county Donegal, (our favourite county for many reasons, namely lack of people and so much more wild scenery and fab sandy empty beaches) all the way to old Kinsale Head in County Cork (one of the largest counties in Eire). It is 2500 kilometers in total and therefore the longest coastal route in the world. It has been lovely to travel its full length. Its taken us two trips to do it basically either side of the COVID pandemic , you can see the first bit back in 2018 under Blog 129. The rest i.e. Malin head to Fanad lighthouse in the North and Tarbert on the Shannon River , county Kerry, to Kinsale Head, county Cork in the south. Just so so pleased to have been given the chance to do it, what scenery, what geography , what people, what food, what Guinness. This video shows all the Wild Atlantic Way (WWW) signs we stopped at, they are constructed at what they consider to be the key viewing points.
Here is the complete route we travelled in a graphic, what a joy!
If you feel like learning a lot more about the wonderful Wild Atlantic Way feel free to click HERE
MAPS AND TRAVEL ROUTE
This shows a map of Ireland (northern Ireland and Eire combined) which you can use to locate the places I am talking about along with a full scale map of the Wild Atlantic Way (WAW) and mini WAW maps I took photos of along the way alongside a humorous small video of our route created by KeefH Web Designs using a clever app I found. #enjoy #humour If you feel like learning a lot more about the wonderful Wild Atlantic Way feel free to click HERE
Taken on our travels in Downing's village Donegal by the beach and Bantry Bay town centre co Kerry but covers our route through both Kerry and Cork to the end of the Wild Atlantic Way at Old Kinsale head.
Here are some of the highlights of our trip recorded as panoramas or from within the van to show off some of the spectacular scenery that is available, especially along the Wild Atlantic Way, maybe give it a visit sometime, if we have wet your appetite #hintsandtips Click on each to expand the panorama, the Powerscourt estate one will take you to their website as will the Glenveagh National Park. #enjoy
HIGHLIGHTS / LOWLIGHTS
I'll list them here, probably can't include every highlight there were just so many of them, for lowlights really the stand outs were all to do with the van , an accident (now sorted) and a system malfunction (fix scheduled in). So... Highlights: browns bay, gyles quay walk, glenvagh, powerscourt, finishing the WAW, mickey finns pub redcross, malin head, ballymastocker strand, ice cream at old kinsale head, huge ice cream at redcross, ring of kerry, valentia island, inch strand, connor pass on dingle, mount (slieve) brandon, seaborne ovation cruise ship, bantry bay views and bantry town , lunch at south pole inn, chat with master brewer married to tom crean's grand daughter, the Giant's Causeway, clever audio app for Powerscourt, bushmills whiskeys, causeway coastal route, magheracross viewpoint, Tom Crean history via south pole pub and brewery in Kenmare, stone circle Kenmare, roy island view and the Harry Blaney bridge, revisiting the apple farm, cahir
Lowlights: accident, oil noise, spiddal midges, caseys rip off attempts at downings, many of the very narrow roads, parking at inch strand , endless stories about Finn McColl joining Ireland and Scotland (grr!) , headphones failing for Giant's causeway audio, Cork - what a nightmare to drive thru, barrier at the river bann marina campsite, rude german at spiddal campsite, 6amp electrics at Eagle point site, really caught us out as no one said, thought our electrics issue was to do with our accident, cold showers at the apple farm.
Here is a video showing all the wonderful, and not so wonderful campsites we stayed at. Fridge, cooker and all #haha
WEEK 1 10th-16th June 2023
Here are the slideshows of pictures we took using 2 phones and a camera.
DAY 1 - Home to English Heritage's Beeston Castle in Cheshire, then via Conway Castle in North Wales to Holyhead, a brief windy look out on the harbour front and then to our Brit stop in the carpark of the Holland Hotel. Very convenient for early morning ferry plus nice food and ale.
DAY 2 - Up early at the Holland Hotel car park, short drive to Holyhead port, ferry to Dublin, it left early, quite empty, then thru the toll Dublin tunnel (3 euros) and on up the M1 by Balbriggan, difficult to get to the beach, Bettystown and onto the wonderful Gyles Quay near Dundalk which apart from a lovely American couple from the mid west who were tenting, she used to work for United Airlines so they got cheap flights and it was hugely cold in their home state, good move. Really interesting chatting to them. Her favourite band was YES so that got us off on a great footing. We had views on the bay and went for a walk down to it and its beach. Saw lads swimming off the boat launch after work. What a great place, our second fave view / site / pitch of the whole trip after Bantry Bay.
DAY 3 - showered and packed up the van and rejoined the M1 pulling off again to visit the Slieve (mountain) Gullion area, before joining a coastal road to take us around the outskirts of Belfast, where we took a rest at the very nice Jordanstown Loughshore park overlooking Belfast lough. Here we went for a lovely sunny walk with great views. Even the historic Belfast shipyards , the scene of the construction of its most famous yet most unreliable Titanic. Saw the Stena ferry Belfast - Liverpool. Wonder how busy that was? We then visited the wonderful Brown's Bay on the Larne peninsular, so unspoilt, had a lovely walk on the strand (beach) even watching the young horse being trained. She had drawn up with a horse box and parked just behind us in the car park. Brown's bay was once a smugglers paradise and you could see why #haha Fab weather again, truly loving going away in May. After Browns bay we re-traversed our steps to get off the peninsular as no other way off, and headed north to the the campsite at Drumhegalis near Ballymoney, the home of the famous motorcyclist Joey Dunlop OBE. We had wondered why so many motorcyclist were on our ferry and we were to find out over the next few days. The Causeway coastal motorcycle race was on starting in Portrush. Loads camping at our campsite as well. Nice campsite on the River Bann.
DAY 4 - as we had 2 days at the campsite we set off for our prebooked visit to the Giant's Causeway, tip get your tickets online in advance , it gives you free parking in the car park and boy was it busy. More tourists (us included) than you could shake a stick at #hintsandtips You get an audio, exhibition and a chance to walk down (bit steep for us oldies) and back up (easier) to the basalt outcrop that is a world heritage site for obvious reasons. Amazing views, amazingly sunny, there are 3 walking routes or if you really don't want to there is a bus at a reasonable price, but wouldn't advice it as the queue for the way back reminded me of Oxford street in the crush at Xmas #teehee After a lovely time we had lunch in the van in the car park, visited Bushmills distillery, one of the oldest in the world , got its royal charter in 1608 to buy expensive whiskey for our son Doug who is bit of a collector. Then visited the viewing point at Magheracross which gives fabulous sea views as well as views of Duncluce castle, a destroyed relic of the MacDonnell clan. I discovered that (and we are into Genealogy) my Great Grandmother who was from Galway had the surname O'Donnell which in gaelic means of Doneghal which I am extremely proud of because it is our fave county, so wild, remote, and quiet with birdlife and flowers to die for. A great day out before returning to the site for one last walk along the river Bann, even more bikers today. PS loved the Led Zep 4 inspired inner sleeve of the nymphs crawling over the causeway, what a great album that is (reminded by memorabilia in their exhibition.
DAY 5 - left the campsite at Drumaheglis, under the usual barrier which required a key code for motorhomes, bit annoying and drove up to port rush and port stewart, very crowded with both motorhomes parked everywhere and bikers, it was the Joey Dunlop memorial North West 200 bike race. Lovely beaches however. Then it was off to Magillan point on the Northern Irish side of Lough Foyle (a huge prison here as well) to catch the Lough Foyle ferry across to Greencastle on the M V Stratford ferry into Eire and what seemed to be the start of the Wild Atlantic Way (WAW). Weather not great at this point but it did get better as we headed up to Malin head, the most northerly point in Ireland. We had lunch here with great views. Pretty windy makes you wonder what it would be like here in the heights of winter. The van was rocking whilst we ate. We then headed back down the Malin peninsular and around the next peninsular down to our campsite at Downing's village, a true golfing village, 3 courses, various golfing hotels and an induced upmarket feel and cost which meant when I paid old man Casey for the campsite he had inflated the price by 10 euros a night, bless him NOT!!! On the way there we passed Doe castle a WAW sign we had seen before back in 2018. It is the tragic Romeo and Juliet story where Aileen Mac Sweeney's father murdered her lover as he was from the rival clan , so she threw herself out of the castles tower in despair, not quite the Rapunzel story we know and love.
DAY 6 - decided we would have a day out in the Glenveagh national park. Not too far away from Downing's village. Packed up at caseys, no need to leave our "in residence" sign as site completely empty bar us. Arrived in national park car park, visited exhibition / visitors centre and watched the film of the history of the house and gardens and owners throughout time. Quite some juicy stories here, to read the gossip click HERE. If you would like to know more about the Glenveagh national park click HERE, thanks. We loved the house and its stories, murder, homosexuality, rich Americans, and a host of visiting celebrities that had slept there especially the media shy Greta Garbo, our pal Kev's book "Greta and the Labrador" is well worth a read. Other celebs included Errol Flynn, Charlie Chaplin, Marilyn Monroe. We also loved walking around the garden, just so wonderfully laid out and a world variety of plants. The blue Himalayan poppies a big plus, have tried growing myself and germinating in the bottom drawer of a fridge, all to no avail. We had a snack and wonderful coffee in the cafe before catching the bus down to the house and gardens, a 4km walk we decided to pass on as quite undulating terrain. Bus fare return was cheap and they ran often. #hintsandtips Drove back again passed Doe Castle. In the evening went out for our booked meal at the Downing's Bay Hotel, golf clubs and golfers everywhere #teehee It was also my first pint of Guinness in Ireland, what a joy!
DAY 7 - Packed up after having what was in fact a luxury shower. Old man Casey had tried to rip us off saying 2 euros for a token for a shower (£1.71) , we whinged and he gave us both one for free. We then took the van down next to the Downing's Bay hotel and went for a walk on the beach, amazing sands. We then drove around the rather narrow but spectacular Rosguill peninsular stopping to get great views down onto both the campsite and the amazingly deserted yet long curved sandy strand. It was a lovely route all the way around this peninsular ending up back in downing's village. We then headed off across the Harry Blaney bridge, which we had done back in 2018. This time we actually got a view of Roy Island across the mulroy bay. We then headed up to Fanad lighthouse, we stopped short of it in 2018 because the weather was so so bad, but this time we could read the history bards and even went down to the WWW sign by the lighthouse. Great views over the cliffs from there. We then came back down through the other side of the Fanad peninsular, through Letterkenny and on down to Rossnowlagh beach and our campsite, near Ballyshannon home of Rory Gallagher (a hero of mine) stopping briefly to take in views of potentially the best beach (strand) in the whole of Ireland in our humble opinion, Ballymastocker strand. Even better than Inch on the dingle peninsular.
It was an extremely hard life , back breaking work, at the turn of the century on the bleak and remote Fanad peninsular.
Here is the talkies video we took. That is it for week 1.
WEEK 2 17th-23rd June 2023
Here are the slideshows of pictures we took using 2 phones and a camera.
DAY 8 - A relaxing day at the Boortree campsite here in Rossnowlagh. It should be noted that when we tried to find the site yesterday there is only one signpost to it and that is obscured by the warning sign that says road is liable to flooding at high tide, anyhow we eventually found it. No reception, you have to ring the lady who gave us the entry code for the amenities block and assigned us a pitch. The first night there were French, German and Yorkshire folks staying, the second day, i.e. today we basically had it to ourselves. A lovely walk on the mostly deserted beach. Nearly all holiday cottages empty, lovely butterflies, saw surf school and the empty life saver station. We then returned to the site to chill in the sun, sadly because of the wind that was literally true, so we ate inside. A very relaxing day. The lady hd told us , beyond her control, that the electricity was off 9-4. I pestered her at the end of the day since it was not back eventually it returned about 5p/m so not too bad.
DAY 9 - Left our relaxing site reasonably early as had quite a distance to travel today from Donegal to Galway. On route kit started raining quite heavily and lasted for a good bit of the day, our only really bad day weather-wise. We tried to have lunch in Ballyhaunis. Much of Eire's towns stary with Bally meaning "place of" in Gaelic. I actually learnt 2 words of gaelic at our campsite in Spiddal tonight, every road sign in Spiddal is only in Gaelic. So my proud words are Mna and Fir (ladies and Gentlemen) #teehee Just outside Ballyhaunis we did stop at a picnic area that doubled as a memorial to Michael Coen. A bit of history for you. Michael Coen was an IRA volunteer from Lecarrow, Ballyhaunis and was captured, tortured, murdered and his body mutilated in retaliation for the killing of William Stephens, kings forces, in Ballyhaunis on 29 March. No wonder things can sometimes get tense, a little scary actually! Spiddal campsite was probably the worst we stayed at, muddy, midges to drive youw insane, and a rather rude german guy (note i like germans having lived there in my yoof) who pulled up much to close to our pitch and chucked our electrics cable out of the way without so much as a by your leave, not friendly! Showers very very average, but site as closish to anne's cousins house. Ps driving through Galway was a nightmare, almost as bad as Cork. Tuam seemed quite nice.
DAY 10 - We left the Spiddal site at a reasonable time, couldn't wait to go, got bitten to death by midges whilst packing up, not great! Had to drive back through Galway so called in at a Lidl on the outskirts to get some gifts for Ralph and family. Annie hadn't seen Ralph for about 55 years. We arrived in Oranmore a little early for our meet up at 10.30 am so killed a little time doing our own food shopping in Tesco's Oranmore. If only we had known Ballynacloghy was a little further from Oranmore than we suspected, anyhow we still arrived at Ralph and Emma' lovely house in good time. It was a lovely few hours, great to catch up, what a lovely setting , we walked to Ralph's huge garden and saw views of Galway bay. His polytunnel was the largest I've ever seen with great produce growing, well jealous. We had lunch and then sadly had to depart for the long drive to Tralee , the county town of Kerry. Wonderful hospitality and such a nice man. Now what can I say about the Rose of Tralee #teehee you sing it, i'll hum it! The Woodlands campsite was really nice , especially our neighbours the rabbits.
DAY 11 - Put our "in residence" sign up on the pitch and headed off to a great day exploring the Dingle peninsula, slea head drive. We started in Blennerville where we filled up with diesel, stopped at the nature reserve and took some pictures especially of Blennerville windmill. Then it was onto the Dingle peninsula. Ballycurrane was fun but we got slightly blocked in by fishermen and their vehicle / boats. No worry got out of it with a 90 point turn ;)
We then climbed to Mount Brandon viewpoint, great views, chatted to a aging cyclist who told us if we thought this was steep try Connor's pass so we did after a quick walk around the very quiet village of Brandon. Interesting public houses there! What can we say about Connor's pass it was truly spectacular, a real highlight. we even had a 99 icecream at the top. It was then onto the Tom Crean inspired South pole inn at Anascaul for lunch and a bit of history. We coincided with zillions of walkers finishing their charity walk and coachloads of American tourists catching up on the local hero. But we still got fed and very nice it was too, washed down with a half of the black stuff! Not easy parking there so we parked over the little bridge and stream and walked in. Same was true parking wise at Inch strand, we had hoped to walk on the beach but boy was it busy being a weekend. Anyhow after that we went back to our Woodlands campsite at Tralee via Castlemaine. A truly great day, about 130 miles driven and lots to see in a day.
DAY 12 - Packed up early and set off back into the town of Tralee to have another look around, what a very nice town Tralee is, then we set off to explore the most wonderful Ring of Kerry. We started at Rosbeigh Strand which looks over to the Dingle Peninsula and Inch strand, and you could see how in the past the two were joined by sands. Amazing views. We then visited ballycarbery castle and the old barracks, a slice of france in ireland. Then onto views of scariff island and over the far bridge to valentia island. Eventually we stopped in the wonderful Sneem for a walk through the town and across the Sneem river, oh and the statuatory ice cream, it was a very hot day. Then it was back round to Killarney to finish the truly spectacular ring of Kerry. The Muckross national park is nice, went their and to the house with my parents back in 2000. We camped at the White bridge site, the lady in charge was hugely helpful. We had a great night.
DAY 13 - Up early, filled up with water, replaced their reserve sign (a nice touch for arrivers) and went into Killarney to have a look around. Parked in main street and did some gifts shopping. Then headed past house and gardens out to Killarney castle, past the many jaunting cars (horse and trap). The castle and lakes were magnificent , you can take a boat trip into the national forest. Alas we didn't have time, Set off from here to Kenmare, not the town we remember as much more commercialised, however we spent time at the Tom Crean brewery (see here for more detail) and i bought 8 unique beers. The stone circle (oldest in Eire) here and its lanteen tree surrounds were great. The Trump Loy on some of the houses was very interesting as well, no idea how they see out of those windows but maybe with the tourists that is the aim #whoknows After Kenmare we started the beara peninsula ring. Tried looking for our old cottage in Tuosist but so much changed, foolishly went off on a very narrow coastal road where our accident happened, the less said about that the better. Eventually after driving through the WAW coastal roads we reached Eagle point campsite on Bantry Bay, the best (apart from electrics) we stayed at. What views!
DAY 14 - Day spent at Eagle point campsite in Ballylickey on the waters edge of Bantry Bay which is where our pitch was, very nice belgian guy next door to talk to, watched the kayakers, ate, drank, read and generally relaxed, both the long journeys of the last 3 days and the minor accident had taken their toll but it was good to just recharge the batteries. Amazing sunset over the waters edge. Went for an extended walk around the site as well.
Here is the talkies video we took.
WEEK 3 24th-31st June 2023
Here are the slideshows of pictures we took using 2 phones and a camera.
DAY 15 - After packing up the van to leave we left Eagle point campsite (sigh!) and started with a stop and good walk around the heritage town of Bantry, a lovely harbour area with lots of historic buildings and boards to aid your understanding of where the town had come from. Even bought some screws in an old fashioned hardware store to try and improve the stability of the external gas flue which had been a bit mangled in the accident. The fabulous Sheep head drive is very recommended, bit scary in parts, but the views, oh the views. The Seefin www signpost view points are a must. After coming back along the easier western coast of this incredible drive we went thru the town of Clonakilty home of Michael Collins, yes that Michael Collins. Clonakilty was a very busy town. From here it was out towards Timoleague and our campsite at Sexton's. We will always remember with some fondness the old owner for (in a broad Irish accent) "flying low" whilst talking to us #smile The site didn't accept card, cash only, so they let us delay until the next morning.
DAY 16 - Left campsite and found the ATM in the coop on the outskirts of Timoleague , got euro cash out at an extraordinary high exchange rate, went back and paid the campsite for our stay. Then explored both the town and the friary of Timoleague, which sadly was mostly a locals graveyard but a nice imposing building built on the edge of the estuary of the Argideen River which we then drove along across the old bridge and nature reserve to Courtmacsherry to learn all about the sinking of the Lusitania. It was then back to Old Kinsale head to complete the full Wild Atlantic way, only taken us 5 years, but I think you can blame the pandemic for that! At the head we had a lovely icecream and pie with coffee and enjoyed the sunshine. Kinsale itself was a very busy but interesting town, we strolled around many of the back streets as well as the harbour area . Clearly a tourist weekend visit for people from Cork. After that we had the mis-pleasure of having to drive right through the centre of Cork and the old dock areas, a town we have visited in the past but because of the volume of traffic a town I would be happy never to see again. Sorry folk from Cork! Once through cork we headed out to our campsite at Blarney. We had considered the Brit stop at Cobh but having met other travellers realised the 5 pitches would all be taken. Blarney is a lovely site, nice flowers, nice warden and pitch and putt course should you want attached for a fee.
DAY 17 - Broke camp , is that the right expression, did the unsavory dunny man job, a little more tricky these days with the broken cassette door needing to be gaffer taped up (sorted when we return home and I have my tools). Sadly no sight of the castle these days as screened off not like back in 2000 when i queued to kiss the blarney stone, not something I can imagine was open during the pandemic. Then headed off into county Waterford and Dungarven, made sure we didn't need to traverse our steps back through Cork which was what the sat nav was trying and forced it through Mallow (where the much advertised national garden show was on at the Cork racecourse) sadly we didn't have time although I would have loved to visit, then Fermoy a nice town where we stopped for lunch and a spot of food shopping, and Lismore and Dungarven. Parked up by the sea front , still the Atlantic on this corner of Ireland. Walked along past the castle and around the town looking for ice cream, it was hot. Lovely harbour side with eateries out in the open. After Dungarven town, a real must if you are visiting, it was on up very narrow roads to our Getaway eco campsite, a very interesting site. More tomorrow.
DAY 18 - A very relaxing day at the Getaway eco campsite in Kilnafrehan East just outside Dungarven. Interesting shower block, you had to be quick to the tin shed as 12 pitches and completely full. A tenting area as well. Went for a nice walk around the site, wetlands which are big for sewage etc. out in the countryside, a great idea and good for wild life, the goat island and a long chat with the lovely lady owner in what doubled as a camp kitchen and snug for tenters. She showed us some of the images of the work that had gone on to create the site. Her house was an old thatched croft that had much history as indeed was the Nook camp kitchen. We then cooked outside at lunch time and had a few tipples, well why not, after all it was a relaxing day.
DAY 19 - Stayed here back in 2018 and so wanted to go back, just a lovely site and lovely people. See Blog 129 if interested in that visit. Anyhow we set off from the Eco site back to the main road and it was quite a short journey to Cahir, went into the town first but remembered it all well so didn't park up and walk around. We traversed our steps back to the Apple farm on the outskirts of Cahir. Bought apple juice (by the bucket load) , con's cider (the farm was first started in Tipparary by Cornelius Traas, of dutch / irish heritage) , strawberries, plums, and apples. So glad we got there early able to pick a prime slot and 16 amp leccie, good news. Set up the table and chairs. It became very busy and almost full by the end of the day. Had a good wander around to look at the workings of the farm, including the cider press, polytunnels and outside orchards. What a great campsite cant recommend it enough #recommended Only downside the next morning was the cold showers, tip use the one in the loos not those at the end of the barn. We also went through the wonderful tourist town of Adare, as always amazing busy but worth a visit.
This shows our time there in 2018.
DAY 20 - left the Apple farm amd took the very long drive up through Eire to the Wicklow's via the outskirts of Dublin and main motorways, they are quick and empty but have a few tolls on them which in fairness are not that expensive and cut your journey time. Visited the wonderful Powerscroft house and gardens near Bray with great views of the Wicklow mountains. The house burnt down a while ago but the gardens are spectacular, especially the variety of world trees, some labelled by those celebs that planted them. Princess Grace of Monaco, PM Bob Hawke of Australia to name but a few. For a keen gardener it was a delight, some pretty tall sequoias and redwoods as well as the formal bits, had a great chat with the lady gardener. Before starting our walk we watched the exhibition movie to get some background and had coffee and cake outside in the sun, just fab! after our tour with audio commentary on your phone (clever) we did some shopping in the gift shop. Then it was onto our campsite at Redcross for 2 nights. Also not very busy. Having set up we went up to the Mickey Finn pub attached to the site for an evening meal. Nice craft ales as well.
DAY 21 - Spent the day relaxing at the Redcross site, a nice site and very quiet. We were in the silent garden, the adults only section. It is a very well laid out site. We went for a walk around the whole perimeter which takes you through fields of animals, we spotted, donkeys, llamas, pig, goats, deer and alpacas, maybe there were more. On return from our walk we went (again, what spoilt near septuagenarians we are!) to the Mickey Finn craft pub for lunch and chatted to a lovely family from Newry on the next table. The publican even allowed me to pose behind the bar. After that we went over the road for the largest 99 flake ice cream we have ever had and sat outside eating them in the sun, bliss! The afternoon was spent relaxing before the long drive home tomorrow.
DAY 22 - the long journey home. Up at 5, quick shower, no brekkie as prepped the day before. Left before 6, it was a longer journey back to Dublin port which is north of the city than I had anticipated and the high /low oil warning light and alarm had started going off again when you accelerate or decelerate, very annoying , getting fixed back home. Lots of toll charges and tunnels to get to the port one of which you had to pay online within 24 hours. I did it whilst we queued for the ferry. A very smooth crossing, not busy, a bit of duty free shopping and then the long drive home from Holyhead. Stopped for lunch on the way back and arrived home about 5 pm so about 12 hours travelling. Sadly when we got home we found we had been burgled, not a great welcome home and the stress of police and forensics and insurance for days, we loved the holiday, just not the return, oh well S**T happens
Here is the talkies video we took.
GIANTS CAUSEWAY 13th June 2023
DINGLE PENINSULAR, COUNTY KERRY 20th June 2023
Feel free to read the write up on DAY 11. I've included a detailed map of the peninsula so you can relate to the text. It was a lovely day 130 miles all around, so worth a visit.
THE SPECTACULAR RING OF KERRY, COUNTY KERRY 21st June 2023
To read the words of this lovely day trip click on DAY 12 The drive and exploration around the ring of Kerry is truly spectacular. It was about 112 miles from Tralee to Killarney all the way around, what sights, what memories.
BEARA PENINSULAR, COUNTY KERRY 22nd June 2023
Read about our trip around the Beara peninsula HERE. This video will give you an insight, its good but preferred the ring of Kerry. Sheep head drive however is a remote must, get to the end. We gave way to all manner of tractors, true hillside farm land.
ACCIDENT ON THE BEARA PENINSULAR, 22nd June 2023
Sadly between Tuosist and Lauragh on the R573, a very narrow road which on reflection we should not have taken, 2 cars in tandem on the other side, old guy and his wife in the first car and his son in the second. So wish he hadn't just stopped with his rear at an angle outwards. He expected me to get around him but we had a deep water channel at the edge of the road on the passenger side so there was no way I was going to ditch the van, hence it was very tricky for me to get around him. Sadly my gas outlet flue caught his car. I jumped out and asked him if he could move. He said no, so I had to carry on which scraped teh side of our van and completely crushed the gas flue and ripped off the loo cassette cover door. We exchanged insurance details. Since returning home I have fixed it all up myself so no real hardship, just rather annoying when you are touring, note to self don't go down narrow roads and I mean very narrow road when octogenarians are travelling on them #smile #hintsandtips
HIGH / LOW OIL PRESSURE ERROR 30th & 31st 2023
Started after our long journey from Cahir to Powerscroft Estate, thought it was lack of oil so put and extra litre in. No sign of oil leaks though. likely to be the sensors at the top and bottom of the engine that monitor the high and low oil pressure . Maybe because of how bumpy the roads have been something has been shaken loose. Anyhow it is going into the garage for fixing, way beyond my vehicle skills. Just a tip for others, the noise is totally and utterly distracting when travelling, why would any designer worth their salt invent something like this.
This is an audio book of our 22 days away. Its also on Sound Cloud.
TOM CREAN - HERO, ANTARTIC EXPLORER
We visited both the South Pole inn on the Dingle Peninsular at Annascaul, county Kerry and the Tom Crean brewery at Kenmare, county Kerry. What a lovely chap Bill is , an ex London fireman who is married to the hero Tom Crean's grand daughter. We (well I) had a lovely chat with him about craft beers and he told me how the big players in Ireland like Guinness were trying hard to force the smaller players out of the market place. Now that really is unacceptable. We had a lovely meal in Annascaul. If you want to see and read more visit the Dingle peninsula DAY 11 Read more about this undoubted hero