We have seen Dublin relaxed in its late 20th century getting-by-nicely mode, its frantic Celtic-Tiger days, and its post-crash depression days. This time, things seem to be quite cheery and thriving, judging from the number of tourists and young people.
We’ve been looking forward to today for quite a while. Arriving in Dublin means that we have ticked every box/city on our tour, and also that we have returned to a city we have visited several times – and always loved.
We have arrived in the ancient city of Waterford, Ireland’s oldest. Inhabited for several thousand years, it was invaded by the Vikings in the 10th century. In a departure from their norm, they stayed and intermarried with the Irish, and were still there when the city was taken over by the Anglo-Norman invaders of the 12th century.Continue reading “The crystal city”
It’s a lovely sunny day and we spent most of it in the picturesque town of Kinsale, which often wins first place in Ireland’s “Tiny Towns” competition for overall appeal. Some of its charm, however, might come from the fact that Eli Lily manufactures most of its Prozac just outside of town. Who knows whatContinue reading “Welcome to Happy Valley”
Today, we left Killarney early in the morning and congratulated the taxi driver on his lovely town. He responded by saying, “Aye, and if only it had a roof on it.” We didn’t think the rain was that bad, ourselves.
Today we took our long-anticipated tour of the Ring of Kerry, a 110-mile trip around the Iveragh Peninsula, a must-do for tourists to Ireland. It’s where one sees all the most iconic views, and comes with mountains, lakes, sheep, cows, tidy farms and precious villages.
We strayed off the beaten path a bit yesterday in Limerick, but today is much more of what one comes to Ireland to see. Call us shallow.
As we got off the train this morning in Limerick, I turned to Don and said, “Tell me again why we came here.” I asked because we thought this was a very sad and dismal place when we were last here in 1999. And the view from the train station did nothing to change myContinue reading “A good reason to return”
Four years ago, we very much wanted to visit the Aran Islands while we were in Galway. We had just watched the 1934 film (or “filum,” as they say in Ireland) Man of Aran, and were haunted by the idea of this remote, hardscrabble place where life just seemed one misery after another. You know, aContinue reading “Rocks of Ages”
We took a walking tour of Galway this morning and were reminded of some fascinating facts about this city – yet another town which is actually the center of the universe as we know it, at least according to our guide.