In 2008 my friend, my sister, and I travelled to Ireland for the first time. We were on our way to see the Burren, the Cliffs of Moher, castles, abbeys, stone walls, pubs, and so much more.
Day 1 was the flight over (red-eye)! Day 2 we landed, had a quick bite to eat in the Shannon Airport while we waited for the sun to finish rising. We then got our rental car and practiced driving around the parking lot on the left side of the road. Well, I practiced driving. Our friend was too young by rental car standards to drive and my sister refuses to drive in cities.
I finally felt confident enough to enter onto the Irish highway and off we went towards Doolin. The car had a very handy LEFT with arrow on the drivers side windshield. And another aside, the rotaries and circles work great in Ireland. If only the USA could upgrade to those and get rid of the round-abouts…
Cliffs of Moher
We reached the Doolin area and stopped at the Cliffs of Moher. The Cliffs are spectacular and have to be seen to be believed. The Cliffs rise, at their highest, about 700 feet above the sea and the Cliffs extend almost nine miles. About seven miles to the west is the first of the three Aran Islands, which are easier to see on a clearer day.
The Cliffs don’t feel like they are 300 to 700 feet above the sea level, but look for the birds, they are minuscule. (According to some websites, the Cliffs are the second most popular destination in Ireland.)
After getting our fill of the Cliffs, we headed down into the Village of Doolin and parked at the public parking down near the pier. We then wandered around Doolin Point. The Point offers another view of the Cliffs, as well as spectacular sunsets (not that day though), and of the Aran Islands.
Bed and Breakfast and Supper
After we finished wandering around on Doolin’s rocky shore, we decided it was late enough in the afternoon that we could head to the Emohruo Bed and Breakfast. Margaret met us at the door and almost the first thing she asked us was “Are you here for the matchmaking festival?” Our tired minds slowly turned the question over while we stared at her for a moment and it finally clicked what she had asked. We assured her no we weren’t there for Lisdoonvarna’s Matchmaking Festival. She was quite relieved.
Margaret showed us to our bedroom and we got somewhat settled in. Then we headed for a walk across the road to Stonecutter’s Kitchen for an early supper. None of us slept on the plane, so we had been awake for about 36 hours. After a bit to eat, we headed back to the B&B, finished unpacking, and then fell into bed. Had to get some sleep so we could set out for ruined stone churches, ancient tombs, and the Burren on Day 3.