1/2: Exploring West of Ireland

FOREWARNING: THIS POST CONTAINS LOADS OF PICTURES. ENJOY!

FOREWARNING 2: THIS POST IS WAY WAY OVERDUE.

taxi to city

It was raining that early morning on the first day of our tour (July 9). The weather forecast did not miss. However, we still looked forward to an enjoyable getaway. (Rain, rain go away. Come again another day.)

me and aga twhile waiting for the bushere comes the bus

We rode a taxi to get to GoBus stop at Burgh Quay, City Center. The bus came on time (7:02am). The driver checked our booking/transaction number before we hopped on and settled in the bus. And at 7:16am, as scheduled, we departed from Dublin.

kro kro kroeating aga

Kro..kro..kro… Somebody did not miss to nap and eat while on the way. 🙂

The drive was 2.5 hours. We were dropped at Galway coach station from where the Healy tour guides and fellow trippers awaited. And the tour began.

burren-tour-map

This was our “rough” itinerary. I grabbed this picture from the Healy Bus website from where I also booked this trip. Check them at www.galwaybustours.ie to save you from any confusion. When I was then doing my search for this trip, there were loads of websites saying about “Healy” tours. There’s bus.ie, healybus.com, healytour.ie.

the burren

Our first destination: County Clare. That is the famous The Burren. In the simplest explanation, it is a landscape of cracked bedrock (limestone). It’s nice to see and be amazed of this formation.

ailwee caveac sign

Our first stop: Aillwee Cave. This cave is in the Burren mountain. We paid the discounted fee of €5 for the cave tour which was a 30-40 minutes walk. They said we got that special price because we’re with a tour agency. The regular fee is €12.

hall at acac sign dbearfalls in the cavebear skull

The Bear Den. Bear skulls and bones were discovered inside when the cave was first explored. Our guide said the cave could have invited bears to settle here as shed because of its stable temperature.

up the burren

After the short cave experience, we further head onto the Burren region.

mini tomb

We passed by this stone arrangement, a megalithic tomb. Our next sight was the bigger version of this.

portal tomb signother touristyoung fellafeet scenewith the tombup close tomb

The Poulnabrone dolmen- said to be a site of ceremonies and rituals thousands of years ago. This tomb dates back to the New Stone Age. A rope barrier is in place to prevent tourists from getting too close to the stone for its preservation.

We only stayed there for 15 minutes enough to get to see the stone and take a couple of selfies. Then, we drove to the highlight spot of the day, the Cliffs of Moher.

first pic at moherdisplaymore displaycenter

The first thing that greeted us when we reached the place was the Cliffs of Moher Visitor Centre. It is like a mini museum of everything about the cliffs.

the ledgesky experience

This is the Ledge- a virtual reality experience. The audience here is seeing the cliff from a bird’s eye view. It’s like following a bird as it flies over the cliffs and glides down over the waters.

cliffpanorama cliff entranceleft side cliffprotected habitatsignage

groupfie with photoomber

on the left clifffocus flowerselfie clifffallin memoryunstable cliff warningthe burren way cliff

sea stack at cliffcrossingat the edge selfiedaredevils

Part two of our adventure to come shortly.

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That Thing Called Garda

It’s immigration day! We had to wake up early to see the bureau. I set the alarm 3:30am but I woke up about 13mins late. Good thing Agatha woke up early (as she always does), and she right away prepared our breakfast and lunch packs for the day.

At 4:58am, we reached Burgh Quay /ˈbʌrə kiː/ by a taxi, which our lovely host Una prebooked that night. I was 11th in the queue. That’s good a news, I thought. What disturbed us a lot, however, was the very cold dawn weather. I have three layers on for my top and two layers for my bottoms, equipped with gloves and scarf and bonnet but that was not enough. The icy cold wind was penetrating. Sitting on the equally ice cold pavement made me feel more freezing. So, after just a few minutes of sitting, I was standing and swinging in place while waiting for the office to open.

 

10:04 am, I’m done and I have my registration complete. And we’re off to run some errands and roam around the city.