Tuesday, April 26, 2011

The Burren & The Cliffs of Moher

After our stay at Ashford Castle, we made our way down to the Dingle Peninsula (you can see it on the map in my previous post if you are interested).  There was sight-seeing to be done on the way, however.  How else to fit in half of the places we wanted to see?  We drove through Galway and then down through the Burren.  The Burren is quite an unusual place.  To say that this area has rocky soil would not be an understatement, it would just be plain incorrect.  The Burren is rocks, not just rocky soil.  For mountains of rock, however, an incredible amount of life and history is present.  These aren't just your typical rocks either.  Imagine the rock walls you could build with such a supply!  We were very happy to be able to get out of the car and climb around the mountains a bit.

Chris was wearing his "I Am Mr. Darcy" shirt made by our friends Justin and Brooke (get yours here!) when we stepped out of the car at a visitor's center...the girls who worked there were very entertained by his shirt.  Come to find out, one of the girls was named Liz Darcy. :)  Lots and smiles and laughs, I assure you. :)

Not far from The Burren are the Cliffs of Moher.  Or, the Cliffs of Insanity, for all you Princess Bride fans.  These cliffs are so impressive that it is difficult to take a picture of them that properly represents the awe one feels seeing them in person.  We were, however, frustrated to find that a huge amount of bugs were also visiting the cliffs (judging from the smell, they were there to visit a recently fertilized field) and that made the visit not quite as fun as it could have been.  You can't really tell in the photos, but there were also quite a few people there, even though it wasn't high tourist season.  The visitor's center is large and new, I can only imagine how crazy the crowds must be here during the summer.
See that blip on the top of the cliff? Castle remains. These are
some BIG cliffs!

And because we get a kick out of signs, here are a couple that were at the Cliffs of Moher.

You really should look at some of the professional photos of these places, they capture them far better than I did.  Google Images is a good place to start!

After seeing these two incredible sights, we raced to catch a ferry that would shorten our trip to the Dingle Peninsula.  We made it with no time to spare (the gate was already closed, and reopened just for us--they started moving just as we turned off our car!) and enjoyed the rest of our drive.  One thing Ireland is by no means lacking is beauty.  There is so much variety, so many extreme beauties, and the Dingle Peninsula is no exception.  I'll get pictures of that up soon!

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