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    • Day27

      Kilmacthomas Greenway

      June 1 in Ireland ⋅ ⛅ 13 °C

      Lovely village, another accident as we were delayed by roadworks after swimming yesterday, so we ended up stopping here for the night. The buildings are all painted bright colours, there is a shop called Lennons, and we are parked between an abandoned mill and a community orchard, at the start of a huge greenway carrying on until the next city.

      Seems most of Ireland is beautiful, so some of our nicest spots are totally unplanned as it's just too easy to end up somewhere gorgeous. People seem friendly everywhere you go. So far so good for the whole country 👌🏼🇮🇪🥰

      Oh and we finally found a toothbrush for Lennon 🙈 his poor little rotten, month old teeth are finally clean 😆
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    • Day11

      The Waterford Greenway

      June 12 in Ireland ⋅ ⛅ 61 °F

      Saturday ended up being a lazy day (we deserved it!) so we walked around town, had a few pints, got a few groceries and ate! Nothing special, just a chill day. Went to evening Mass at the Friary because we made plans to bike ride the next day. In our stroll, we met a local couple who recommended the Greenway by bike. So off to the bike shop, and decided on an E assist bike, recommended by the guy at shop. He told us we should have no problem doing the 46 kilometers round trip from Dungarvan to Kilmacthomas. That’s half of the trail, we definitely were not going to do 92 kilometers! Mission accomplished! Took us 4 1/2 hrs with one long stop to eat and drink. 46 kilometers! Pretty proud of ourselves. It’s was an incredible trip and a must do for anyone near any of the many Greenways in Ireland. Most were constructed 5-10 years ago, using the old railroad access to creat these bike and walking paths. This one took us along the coast and then into the mountains (thank God for the assist bike!), through farm lands and unspoiled spaces. Ended our bike trip with a ride through the Abbeyside, an upscale neighborhood overlooking the town, with an Abbey that sits right on the water. Peaceful. Strolled through the headstones (Jen and Kelly experienced that when we were all together - cemeteries are so interesting).
      The foods festival finishes up today. We strolled through the square and Larry found the seafood paella he was looking for - it was tasty, not the best he has had, but good.
      Running out of clothes, so laundry is definitely on the schedule for tomorrow. Heading to Kinsale on the south coast and Ardmore, which is supposed to have one of the most beautiful beaches in Ireland. Sun was in and out today, tomorrow is supposed to be more sun! Yeah!!
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      Where was the e-bike when we were there?! Lol. Sooo pretty and yes I could spend days walking thru the cemeteries reading the family names and how beautiful they are.


      Wow! Can’t believe all the biking you managed. Good for you! Beautiful sites.

    • Day5

      Dungarvan to Clonakilty

      July 13 in Ireland ⋅ ⛅ 68 °F

      Our first stop was in Ardmore where St. Declan founded the monastery at Ardmore (Aird Mhór in Irish, meaning "Great Height") prior to the arrival of St. Patrick in Ireland. Ardmore is believed to be one of the oldest monasteries in Ireland.

      The round tower at Ardmore may be of 12th century origin, but could have been built as early as the 10th century.

      Inside the Monastery ruins were two Ogham Stones which had the markings from a medieval alphabet to form a message - before the Roman alphabet was introduced. 😮

      We had Lunch in Kinsale, which is a very cute harbor town, then stopped at a 13th Century Timoleague Friary and explored all of the ruins.

      Finally, we visited Drombeg Stone Circle. It is a circle of 17 standing stones which on excavation showed that there had been an urn burial in the center. It has been dated to between 153BC and 127AD. 😮😮

      We ended our day/night listening to an Irish man from Cork tell stories and sing in a tiny bar next to our hotel - O’Donovan’s in Clonakilty.

      Interesting Fact I learned today: I obviously cannot smell as well as I thought. Everyone, but me, could detect a weird smell from our water glasses at lunch. 🤷‍♀️ I’m going to blame having COVID earlier this summer.
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      Love the scenery, so pretty! [JoDee]


      We missed the music because of COVID. Love this.

    • Day4

      Dublin to Dungarvan

      July 12 in Ireland ⋅ ☁️ 70 °F

      Our first day on our tour has been unbelievably amazing! First of all, there are only eight of us on this tour and each place we visited was out of the way and pretty much without anyone except us. Our driver and guide, Hugh, is fantastic…we seem to be in for an unforgettable time on this southern loop of Ireland.

      Highlights of today:

      1. The Moone Cross, in County Kildare, which is thought to date from the 8th century and is one of the best preserved High Crosses in Ireland
      2. St. James’ Church, Castledermot (Church of Ireland church) with its round tower, the Oath Stone and beautiful church door
      3. The Abby in the town of Graiguenamanagh - The wooden ceiling was constructed without any nails 😮
      4. Kilmogue Dolmen - Oh my goodness! It’s also called Leac an Scail - an exceptional example of a type of megalithic (large stone) tomb known as a Portal Tomb. Two portal stones the tallest stones in the tomb form the entrance to a stone-lined burial chamber, which is roofed by two massive stone slabs, thelarger of which lies at a steep angle. A cairn or low mound of stones would have covered most of the tomb, but the capstone probably
      remained visible.
      The likelihood is that it was built by Neolithic farmers about six thousand years ago for the burial of important members of their community and perhaps also to be a focal point for a group or tribe.

      We are spending the night in Dungarvan. Along time ago the Vikings raided along the shores of Ireland and made their own settlements. Dungarvan, which means “Fort of Garvan” was one of them.

      Lunch = The Waterside Guesthouse
      Dinner = Indian Food at The Indian Ocean in Dungarven
      Drinks = Mick Doyle’s in Graiguenamanagh and The Local in Dungarven
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    • Day12

      Day 12 - Gone Fishin'

      August 12, 2019 in Ireland ⋅ ⛅ 17 °C

      Quite frankly it was a pretty lazy start to the day for us all. I pottered around doing my blog, whilst the others did other things, mostly basking in the sun in the front garden. A fox ran across the field, then we were joined by Rosie the Donkey & a herd of bullocks.

      It wasn’t until midday that we set out to the local town of Lismore for a walk & some shopping. We parked up in the sunshine & headed to the Lismore Tourist Information Office to enquire about pony trekking. Unfortunately the nearest stables were amazingly over an hours drive away, so that was crossed off the itinerary.

      We then embarked a walking tour of Lismore led by our guide, Chris. First stop was St Carthage’s Cathedral, which had been a Church since the 7th Century. We went in & met the cleaner, who it turned out was kept busy with a family of swallows nesting in the ceiling. It wasn’t the most attractive of Cathedrals if we are going to be brutally honest.

      We then found an outdoor handball court dating back to 1875 whereupon it started to spit with rain. We ummed & ahhed about continuing the walk & decided to go for it. It was the wrong decision, by the time we got the river bank it was pouring down. We ran for cover, dispersing in all directions.

      All thoroughly saturated we met up with each other about 20 minutes later with the rain having now stopped. The other three headed back to the town centre, but I went off in the opposite direction to a bridge that overlooked the back of Lismore Castle.

      Lismore Castle is currently owned by the Duke of Devonshire & recently hosted Charles & Camilla when they visited Ireland. The Castle has had some illustrious owners including Sir Walter Raleigh, Richard Boyle, once the richest man in Ireland & Robert Boyle, the ‘Father of Modern Chemistry’. Guests have included John F Kennedy, Fred Astaire & Adele Astaire. Sadly, only the gardens at Lismore Castle are open to the public, but at €8 a time I’m not sure whether we will visit.

      After taking several photos of the castle, I walked back up the hill to the town centre & got caught in another downpour. I took shelter & failed to make contact with the others who were in the supermarket. We met up in the Redhouse Inn for a beer & a toastie.

      After lunch, we drove to Cappoquin & drove around & around until we finally located the fishing tackle shop, which it turned out to be inside the Post Office, where the postmaster doubled up as the fishing expert as well. I bought a rod & some spinners, which we were assured would catch us some trout. As if!

      We then returned to Lismore & drove down to Ballysaggartmore Towers, where a circuitous walk took us along a woodland path of ancient oak trees for about half a mile to the Towers & Grand Lodge. Ballysaggartmore Towers were built around 1830 by notorious landlord, Arthur Keily-Ussher, as an entrance to a massive stately home he was intending to build. During the Great Famine, Keily-Ussher evicted his tenants to make way for sheep that he judged were more profitable. A group of tenants plotted to kill Keith-Ussher, but the plot failed & he had them transported to Tasmania. During the walk it poured with rain yet again, which was just not funny.

      From what I saw of Lismore, between the constant downpours, was a very attractive, spotlessly clean ‘Historic’ town built on the River Blackwater. It also had an exceptionally nice Millennium Park, with several sculptures & points of interest.

      Back at the cottage we had a cup of tea, then Chris attached a weight & a spinner to the fishing rod with some fancy complicated knots. After a few practice casts in the garden, we then marched down through the cow field towards the river. En-route we bumped into Willie digging out rocks in a field & upon seeing our rod he expressed his opinion that the river maybe too deep to catch a fish. I got the distinct impression that he thought we had not a cat in hells of catching a fish.

      Chris & I got to the river bank & muscled our way in between a couple of bullocks. Chris as teacher showed me the ropes with some ‘expert’ casts & rewinding. On around his 5th cast, Chris started reeling in & lo & behold caught a fish, which he landed on the bank. It was a small, but perfectly big enough, brown trout. WoW! A quick photo sent to the girls soon had Jackie racing down to watch two masters ply their craft!

      I had a few casts & managed to hook a few weeds, but after not too many more casts, I also had hooked a brown trout (which was fractionally bigger that Chris’)! My trout put up a tremendous fight & got caught up in the weeds, which required Chris to pull it out. I am also a bit squeamish, so Chris had to de-hook it after I had obviously had my photo taken with it, then he had to stun it with a rock to put it out of it’s misery. But I still caught the fish!

      It was now one-all & the race was on to catch the third & deciding fish. Try as we might, neither of us could land that final fish, despite trying different locations along the river bank. After an hour or so, us hunter / gatherers called it a draw & lugged our haul back to the cottage.

      Chris then gutted the fish & they were put in the oven with oranges as a starter (for 3). Once the delicious fish had been baked & eaten, Chris fired up the BBQ for sausages & burgers, whilst the girls faffed around in the kitchen, which all made for a very lovely evening meal.

      After dinner, we had a tetchy game of Cribbage, that the boys naturally won! This brought an end to the day.

      But on not such a good note during the evening, I managed to break a chunk of my tooth off whilst eating a curly-wurly & Jackie & I received the very sad news that our good friend from Doncaster, Paul Drakett, had passed away.

      Song of the Day - Gone Fishing by Chris Rea
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      no song for the day on day 11 ?


      No song for the day on day 11 ? Did Simon really eat trout ?


      Have you heard of Irish singer Christie Moore ? I like him Mum x

      Simon and Jackie Annals

      There is now, it was just a bit late to be added, sorry. Of course I didn’t eat trout. Yes, I have heard of Christy Moore! I will endeavour to have a song of the day by him before the end of the trip xx

    • Day9

      Adventures Part 2 - Find Your Way

      June 10 in Ireland ⋅ ☀️ 57 °F

      After a smooth transition to Shannon Airport, we drove off in an Audi, because they had nothing else to give us! Oh well! It’s very nice but somewhat unique in some of its controls. Certainly takes some getting used to. Oh, and about getting used to things? Eileen starting driving and did fairly well with the left sided driving thing, entering roundabouts. Larry only had the occasional near death experience with a stone wall or two. All was pretty good until we got to our destination for the next 4 days, the town of Dungarvan on the southern coast of the Celtic Sea. What a spectacular gem! It was recommended to us several years ago as a lovely town and great touring spot. HOWEVER, the streets are narrow and we arrived in the middle of the day and we had trouble finding our hotel. Said a few prayers, took a break by the water before plunging back into the street. With some direction from the hotel (Larry actually walked a block to it - we could see it but couldn’t get there!), we found the car park (parking lot). The hotel is restored, very quaint. Met the owner when we checked in. He was delighted that someone had recommended it to us (a travel agent - pre Covid. Thanks Becky) and asked about our home in US. This town reminds us a little of Annapolis. Harbor town. Sailing club. Lots of pubs and restaurants. Lively town center. Then he informs us that we are very lucky to be visiting this weekend - it’s the West Waterford Festival of Food! If you know Larry, you know he was quite pleased. Town will be closed to traffic (yeah) and tents and vendors and food samples galore.
      Spent the afternoon exploring. Toured the Dungarvan Castle (seems every area has one!), visited a few pubs and continue the challenge for best seafood chowder. Seems it is a staple on every menu everywhere you go, from pubs to fancy places, served with brown bread. A contender for best so far was at The Local - a tiny hole in the wall pub with fabulous staff. Larry plans to continue his quest throughout the next few weeks! Side note - we both have recovered from our GI issues and thankful that a pint tastes good! Hoping our driver has stayed well.
      Finished our evening at the hotel pub, some music. Still struggling with the sunset not happening until after 10pm! The last picture was added to highlight another reason this country is wonderful! - please note choice of cream, ice cream or custard with all desserts. What?? That will be happening tomorrow - too full to enjoy it tonight.
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      Glad you arrived safe. Speed limits there?? Also, did you get a photo of Pat?


      60-120 km/hr so like 35-70. It doesn’t matter, it’s too fast for the narrow roads, except on the motorways. I pulled off and let a lot of people pass me. Did get one picture of him, I’ll have to look for it

    • Day12

      Kinsale and Ardmore

      June 13 in Ireland ⋅ ⛅ 61 °F

      After the weekend, we ventured over to explore Kinsale, a small coastal town, maybe 1 1/2 hr drive from Dungarvan. As with all drives, the last 10-20 km is nail biting. Oh well, getting used to the idea. Traveling on weekdays helps though. Certainly less traffic coming toward us! Kinsale is another coastal town, very similar to Annapolis in MD. Narrow, cobble streets, and shops everywhere. Unfortunately, the restaurant we wanted to have lunch at was closed on Monday. So sad, great location and have heard the food is amazing. Second choice was the Cliff House in Ardmore - another beach town. We did not hike the cliffs today but lunch on the patio over looking the cliffs and the water was a nice choice. Driving back down the cliffs? Yeah- can’t describe. Thank goodness it wasn’t the weekend!
      Every good trip that lasts this long requires some chores. Today was laundry day. We’ve been washing some things out by hand but it was time. By the way, Underarmour shirts wash up nice in sink and dry overnight. Got the big washer, so we put everything in together. Oh, laundromat is in the parking lot of the gas station. Yeah. Out in public for anyone driving by…….
      Off to the Beara peninsula to town of Goleen tomorrow. Staying at Herons Cove, our first B and B. Address? The Harbor!
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    • Day1

      Waterford, Town Centre

      August 31, 2019 in Ireland ⋅ ⛅ 16 °C

      After a couple of hours driving (including a thunderstorm and a toilet/snack stop) we finally reach our next destination: Waterford.
      I must say I had never heard of it before, but apparently it's a major town in Ireland due to its historical importance and to its world-renowned crystal factory.

      So, here are some facts...
      The name Waterford comes from the Norse and means "Wether (ram) fiord". It was l founded in 853 by the Vikings, who were then defeated in 1015 by Brian Brou. The remains of the ancient Viking settlement are still to be seen.

      At first sight, the town looks pretty pictoresque with its colourful houses along the waterfront. We are given some free time to stroll around before starting our guided visit of the Crystal museum and gift shop.
      We use this time to go explore a bit this fascinating town, discovering traditional buildings, pictoresque pubs and ancient stone constructions. In particular, we are attracted to a monumental limestone church looking truly impressive from the outside. As soon as we enter, we are warmly welcomed by the owner of what looks like a souvenir shop who gives us all possible information regarding the church. We soon realise that the shop is a way to gather funds for the church maintenance as in Ireland the State doesn´t support the Church financially. Willing to contribute, I buy a bracelet while Ludo gets a souvenir for his sister. We are so enthusiast, that we ask what time we can come to mass tomorrow... just to find out it´s actually an Anglican church!
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      I want these for our living room...


      For Pap & Smok to file their teeth on them 🐰🐰😂😂😂

    • Day11


      June 5 in Ireland ⋅ ☁️ 12 °C

      hier hatte ich kurzfristig während der Reise ne Unterkunft "hinverlegt" ohne zu wissen, daß es gute Unterkünfte auch in doofen Orten geben kann: wer Brighton in England kennt - hier isses auch so, nur kleiner ....kurz geschaut, gut gegessen, lecker Cappuccino und nun im Zimmer, ausspannen, aufwärmen und ggf. Jacke oder Hose oder oder trockenfönen .....Read more

    • Day11

      naß bis auf die Haut

      June 5 in Ireland ⋅ ☁️ 12 °C

      aufgrund des Wetterberichtes, der für den ganzen Tag Regen angekündigt hat, gegen 9.30 aus dem B&B in Kinsale los, den WAW hinter mir gab grad nur Sprühtropfen ....nach ca. 10, 15 min. fing der Starkregen an - um zur kleinen Fähre über den River Barrow in Ballyhack zu kommen, lotste mich mein Navi über Single-Tracks in abgelegenen Gegenden, die nur mäßige Geschwindigkeit zuließen. Helmvisir zu: siehste nix, wegen Regen auf dem Visir - Visir auf: Tropfen auf der Brille, der Regen peitscht ins Gesicht ....nach ca. 30 min. dann etwas breitere Straßen. Aber der Regen ist längst von den Jackenärmel in die Handschuhstulpen gelaufen - nasse Hände und Finger ... nun gut: es gibt ne Griffheizung, wenigstens etwas.
      Von der Hose drückte der Regen unter die Jacke ....Bauch, Beine, Po: naß.
      Dazu der Fahrtwind und 12° Temperatur bibbert so vor sich hin .....
      Je näher ich nach ca. 1,5 Std. Tramore kam, ließe der Regen nach und der Fahrtwind konnte beginnen, die Jacke von außen zu tocknen (zum Glück haben Jacke, Hose, Stiefel, und eigentlich auch die Handschuhe ne Regenmembran - aber was heißt das schon, bei diesen Verhältnissen.)
      In der Unterkunft in Tramore erstmal Klamotten aus und zum Trocknen auf diverse Bügel, die Handschuhe ausgestopft - und dann endlich ne heiße Dusche......
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    You might also know this place by the following names:

    Waterford City and County Council, Waterford

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