Thursday, June 21, 2018 ( Go South: Schull to Kenmare, Co. Kerry)
After breakfast today in Schull, it was on the road again.
Then we headed over to Ireland's most southerly point: Mizen Head (Co. Cork) and its Signal Station. The walk from the parking lot to the station is a series of switchbacks that takes you along the coast, then a walk across the bridge.
Driver Mike and Denice lead the way
The view to the rocks below
Ireland does gett visited by the cruise ship lines
Our next stop today was the town of Bantry (Co. Cork). Denice and I went on a walkabout to the Church of St. Brendan the Navigator who some credit with being the first European arrival in America. It has stained glass windows by Harry Clarke who is really, really good at doing stained glass.
We lunched today at The Bake House in Banty before hitting the shops.
Back on the van, we are off to Healy Pass (Co. Cork).
After the Healy Pass we are on the Beara Peninsula (Co. Cork to Co, Kerry) which from its switchbacks we see more of the Irish countryside.
It is early on the trip, so I am still excited by the site of one sheep.
Ooh, two sheep.
Yup, two more sheep.
Tonight's lodgings are at the Lodge Kenmare in Kenmare (Co. Kerry).
After dinner we went to hear music at a pub. This is our first Irish put so we have no idea how all this works. I asked our waiter about a table in the pub where food was offered: "Can we just sit here and drink?"
He replied, "Well, I ain't gonna tell anyone!"
We listened this evening to a solo guitarist and singer who sang many songs we were familiar with from our nights at Irish Fest in Milwaukee.
After our first musical night, we are dog-tired.
Friday, June 22, 2018 (Go South: Kenmare to Dingle, Co. Kerry)
Our first destination today is MacGillycuddy's Reeks, the largest mountains in Ireland, and the Killarney National Park (Co. Kerry). We get to it by going through the very spectacular Moll's Gap and the Black Valley.
Here are some shots from Killarney National Park.
We strolled up a walkway to the Torc Waterfall.
Our next stop is the15th Century Muckross Abbey. (Co. Kerry) It was founded in 1448 as a Franciscan friary for the Observantine Franciscans by Donal McCarthy Mor. The abbey has some great High Cross structures.
We were on the Inch Strand beach (Co. Kerry) today for lunch. The sun was out and it was warm enough to enjoy being seaside.
The happy couple (photo credit: ?) on the beach used in the movie Ryan's Daughter
We are off down the road again.
We get a long distance view of Luke Skyewalker's remote island called Skellig Michael (Co. Kerry) from Star Wars: the Last Jedi.
The antiquity of sites like the Gallarus Oratory (Co. Kerry) is almost overwhelming when you see them. This structure is from the 7th or 8th century.
How do like our digs in Dingle (Co. Kerry)? We did. This is the Greenmount Guesthouse,
After we unpacked, we walked down the hill into town, stopping to visit with some locals.
No matter where I am, if the doors of the church are open, I go in looking for art.
It was a wonderful experience--our best music so far in part because it was more concert like and less pub like. But wonderful experiences are what you expect when you travel with an angel.