The Carman Clan

navigating life one day at a time

Ireland

For our honeymoon we embarked on an adventure, and an adventure it was! Both of us had always wanted to go to Ireland, and by booking our tickets in June we scored an amazing deal on airfare. Our honeymoon was the off season before tourist season began, and we had an amazing time.

March 27-fly from Orlando to Philadelphia and Philadelphia to Dublin

March 28- arrive in Dublin, take the bus from the airport to B&B, drop our bags find breakfast, head back nap then adventure out! Best investment (shower gift) was the Dublin Pass! We went to Guinness and the Wax Museum.

 

 

 

 

Dinner was in the Porterhouse Brewery, which we learned about from the Food Networks Bobby Flay Special about Ireland.

March 29- day in Dublin and we took advantage of our Dublin Pass. We scored a cheap breakfast at a local coffee shop, and received pastries for free, and then off we went. We went to Dublin Castle, revisited Guiness, walked to Kilahmain Gaol (old jail) and then realized how far it really was! The tourist maps made the distance look tiny, it wasn’t. Thanks to our wonderful guide he told us how to take the city bus back. My favorite part of the day was Murphys Ice Cream in Temple Bar.

 

 

 

 

March 30- Take the bus from the B&B to the airport, after a struggle where the bus wouldn’t take Ed’s money the bus driver finally let him go. All dubliners are not as friendly as we believed. We upgraded our rental car from a standard to automatic and were off! We headed out with our guide in hand in search of Tulamadore.

After leaving Tulamadore the GPS sent us the back, winding, twisty roads instead of back to the highway. God bless my husband, he rocked the driving.

We arrived at our B&B in Galway, Petra House owned by the Mahers and wow Frank is defiantly a look a like of my uncle Bill! We spent the evening exploring Galway, ate dinner in a pub, stocked up on water and snacks at the grocery and relaxed.

March 31- Off we went from Galway in search of the Cliffs of Moher. The drive was scenic and easy and along the way we encountered a random Castle and a scenic spot at the top of corkscrew road.

We enjoyed exploring the Cliffs of Moher, it was windy and chilly but as the fog lifted it was breathtaking. Someday I want to run the Cliffs of Moher half marathon.

After the Cliffs of Moher we headed to Killarney to stay at Frair Tuck B&B in the Killarney National Forest. Our B&B was difficult to find, thanks to our guidebook we finally did, but the GPS was no help there! This was by far my favorite place to stay. We enjoyed dinner at a pub down the road and then curled up by the fire with our books.

April 1- We called our next B&B to inquire whether we could cancel (prepaid online) and were told no, and I was upset because we wanted to stay on at Friar Tuck for the day. The breakfast was hands down my favorite and I felt so relaxed. We sucked it up and headed out to enjoy the rainy day in the national park. We hiked and explored before heading off to Cork.

Our B&B in Cork was supposed to be upscale, but I was disappointed. Finding it was an adventure as it wasn’t in the country as I expected but in a iffy part of the city of Cork. Ed did great driving as we headed down 2 lane roads that had cars parked on one side and trucks driving straight at us! Once we got checked in we headed off to the Market that we had heard about on Food Networks Bobby Flay Ireland Special. I was upset, I had reserved a full room and they gave us a room with two twins. The B&B lady was not the most friendly, and I didn’t stand up for myself. It was our least favorite B&B, not just because of the twins, but because we heard the doorbell, people talking, toilets flushing, etc all night.

April 2- We couldn’t wait to get out of that B&B and head off to find Blarney Castle. Despite all the tourist busses it wasn’t too crowded and we enjoyed the day. Yes we technically kissed the Blarney Stone, but only in appearance.

After departing Blarney Castle we drove to Waterford for our stay at the castle. Sadly we didn’t explore the town of Waterford, but enjoyed exploring the grounds at the castle, and dinner in the Fitzgerald room, as we didn’t take fancy clothes for the formal dining room.

April 3- Sadly we had to leave Waterford Castle and start heading to Dublin, but we decided to detour slightly to go see the Rock of Cashel. Unfortunately parts were covered in scaffolding due to renovations, but I guess that is what happens with something so old.

From the Rock of Cashel we drove back to Dublin to the Dublin Airport Hilton. What a nice, clean hotel! Of course we arrived on Mothers Day (in Ireland) and the dining room was crazy, but it settled down later for us to enjoy a nice dinner. We returned our rental car that evening, and took the shuttle back to the hotel. It made it easier the next morning as we just had to jump the shuttle. I have to say the Hilton did a great job of making us feel special, although I had noted at all our stays we were honeymooners, they were the only ones who did something special.

Overall we loved our Ireland adventure, but wish it could have been longer. The prices are not cheap and we did try to keep it reasonable by taking advantage of the full breakfasts at the B&B’s/Hotels, picking up bread and lunchmeat for lunches and other snacks, and eating out for dinner. Our rental car ended up being $200 more then we planned since we changed to an automatic, but seeing as Ed had never driven on the other side of the road, let along stick, we felt it was well worth it. Someday I hope to go back to Ireland and see all of the things we missed. We could have packed more in, but why exhaust ourselves more!?

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