Virtual Tour of Ireland: Part Six

Continuing our virtual tour of Ireland takes us on to the Ring of Kerry. If you missed the previous posts, in this series, start here.

Dingle to the Ring of Kerry

After leaving Dingle, it’s on to the Ring of Kerry. Paul Brown of Kenmare Taxi & Tours was the guide for this leg of the tour. Leaving Dingle offered a chance to take in the breathtaking view at the top of Conor Pass, one of the highest points in Ireland.

Driving this route is not for the faint of heart. The road weaves its way around sharp cliffs. There are some narrow passes where only one vehicle can pass, and drivers need to stay alert. Thankfully, Paul Brown’s skillful driving meant the trip down was pure enjoyment. This video gives a sense of the pass, along with some commentary from Paul. Paul is an expert guide and offers tours of Kerry and beyond. Make sure your speakers are on! Yes, the video looks upside down, but it will play in the right orientation.

Next Stop: Killarney National Park

Since they had two days with Paul on the Ring of Kerry, he was able to take them on a lesser-traveled route through the Macgillycuddy Reeks down to Killarney National Park.

Panoramic view with the Lakes of Killarney in the distance

Killarney National Park

Killarney is a town on the shores of Lough Leane in County Kerry. Next door is Killarney National Park. There are many things to see and do in the Park, including the Victorian mansion Muckross House.

A popular activity is to hire a jaunting car in Killarney town. Jaunting cars are a traditional feature of the National Park. Below is a rendering of the jaunting drivers around Muckross.

Drivers at Muckross

Killarney Town

Killarney is a busy tourist town as it’s the most frequented overnight stop for tourists visiting the Ring of Kerry and Killarney National Park. This painting is of the corner where Casey’s combination audio/visual and liquor store sits.

Lovely Kenmare

Kenmare is also a great launching point for the Ring of Kerry. The town is quieter than Killarney but filled with interesting and friendly places.

Whispering Pines B&B is an authentic and friendly B&B
Kenmare has its own stone circle. Very cool.

Stay tuned for our last post in this series, where we’ll wrap it up with some final thoughts and pieces of art from some other areas of Ireland.

A Note

We hope you are enjoying the virtual tour of Ireland.

Our hearts go out to all of the people that helped to make our various trips to Ireland special. We know that the current situation is making life difficult for people at home and abroad. We are looking forward to the day we can get back to Ireland and other beloved spaces!

Virtual Tour of Ireland: Part Five

Dingle, located in County Kerry, is Ireland’s westernmost peninsula.

Dingle Way
Different hues, same area…..The Ramp

Petunia did not have much rain during her trip, but the day on the Loop was an exception. This picture the clearest one from that day.

Dingle Town in County Kerry is the only town on the Peninsula.

Petunia’s Tips:

Sciuird Archeology Tours is a great way to tour the ancient sites in the area. Michael Collins keeps his tour groups small and gives a very informative two and a half hour tour. Since it’s a half-day tour, you can make room for some other sightseeing on the same day.

While in Dingle, visit St. Mary’s Church and tour the Harry Clark stained glass windows.

Take your time to linger in the different pubs in Dingle. Don’t be afraid to stop in the ones that seem to be small or obscure. Pictured here is Petunia in a snug at Dick Mack’s. Everyone has their favorite. Hers was J. Curran’s Shop Bar.

A Note

We hope you are enjoying the virtual tour of Ireland.

Our hearts go out to all of the people that helped to make our various trips to Ireland special. We know that the current situation is making life difficult for people at home and abroad. We are looking forward to the day we can get back to Ireland and other beloved spaces!

Virtual Tour of Ireland: Part Four

More County Clare

For the last virtual tour of Ireland post, we covered the Burren and some of County Clare. Here are some more images and thoughts on the area before we move on. Another favorite stop for travelers is Cassidy’s Pub and Restaurant in Carron.

Cassidy’s
Original Watercolor
9″x12″

Petunia and Tim also stopped at the Visitor Experience at the top of the Cliffs before leaving County Clare. When you visit, do not miss the movie that runs on a loop in the Visitor Center.

Leaving County Clare

From there they were shuttled by Peter Mooney via the scenic route on to the Dingle Peninsula. They made one last stop in Lahinch, before taking the ferry to Tarbert in County Kerry.

The Irish Open had just finished up.

Surf’s up! It was a balmy 68 degrees, and people were enjoying the weather.

Drive right on to the ferry to Tarbert.

This is the way to arrive in County Kerry!

Next Up! On to the Dingle Peninsula

A Note

We hope you are enjoying the virtual tour of Ireland.

Our hearts go out to all of the people that helped to make our various trips to Ireland special. We know that the current situation is making life difficult for people at home and abroad. We are looking forward to the day we can get back to Ireland and other beloved spaces!

Virtual Tour of Ireland: Part Three

When we planned out this series of blog posts a few weeks ago, we chose a “tour of Ireland”, merely keeping in line with a theme of St. Patrick’s Day. We had no idea that travel, or life, as we know it was to come to a complete halt.

It’s taken us a few days to grasp the reality of our current situation, and that our “daily routine” has been severely disrupted. We’re coming to grips with it little by little. Our first hope and prayer are for our family and yours to stay healthy. After that, we are simply trying to keep as much of a routine as possible. Also, it’s helpful to make sure we are staying positive. We hope these images of Ireland bring you happy thoughts and dreams about future times to come. So, let’s forge on with the virtual tour.

County Clare

In the last post, we focused on Doolin and the Cliffs of Moher. After seeing the Cliffs by boat and then spending a night in Doolin, Petunia and Tim were picked up by one of their (highly recommended) drivers, Peter Mooney. Earlier in their trip, Peter toured them around the Connemara Loop. His next assignment was to get them from Doolin to Dingle. He planned the drive so that they could visit some more sights in County Clare.

First, they headed for The Burren. The Burren is a 10 square mile limestone plateau full of prehistoric and early Christian sites. It also has a unique ecosystem. Mediterranean and Arctic wildflowers bloom next to each other. You can read more about this unique area here.

Notice the unique limestone surface where Tim and Peter Mooney are standing.

One of the most popular sites on the Burren is is Poulnabrone Dolmen, or the portal tomb.

After leaving the portal tomb, they made some other interesting stops. One such stop was in Lisdoonvarna, at the Lisdoonvarna Spa Wells. Now, this was not on Peter’s list of stops, and you’re not going to find it on a conventional tour of Ireland. But Petunia happens to be obsessed with mineral spring spas and was very curious about this place. Peter lives in Lisdoonvarna, so he was able to set up an impromptu tour with Pat Dowling, chairman of the Lisdoonvarna Historical Society.

Getting some exercise in the Spa Wells historical center.
Looking down on the Spa Wells

Finally, some art!

Road to Lisdoonvarna

The tour in Lisdoonvarna was very informative, and special because it was probably the most authentic, least “touristy” attraction visited during their ten days in Ireland.

Next Up….More County Clare.

A Note

Our hearts go out to all of the people that helped to make our various trips to Ireland special. We know that the current situation is making life difficult for people at home and abroad. We are looking forward to the day we can get back to Ireland and other beloved spaces!

A Virtual Tour of Ireland: Part Two

It’s time for Part 2 of our Virtual Tour of Ireland. If you missed the first post, focused on scenes of Galway and the Aran Islands, you can find it here. For this virtual tour, we pair my paintings with Petunia’s trip photos.

Part Two: Doolin

Petunia and Tim departed the Aran Islands by ferry and headed for Doolin. They took a chance to plan their trip this way because the Aran Islands to Doolin ferry cancels more frequently that the route between Galway, only because of the exposure to the Atlantic Ocean. Thankfully, they had great weather, and the trip went off without a hitch. One of the benefits of traveling to Doolin by ferry is that you get to experience the nearby Cliffs of Moher from the water.

Cliffs
Watercolor on Canvas

Doolin is famous for its traditional music scene. An Upper Village and Lower Village loosely divide the town. The dividing mark is the bridge at Fisher Street, pictured below.

Doolin Bridge
Petunia’s version.

Here are some more tips for a stay in Doolin.

For lodging, we had a great experience at Moloney House.

The town is another departure point for the Aran Islands, and you can make a day trip from Doolin, weather permitting. We had a great experience on the Happy Hooker run by Doolin Ferries. We would not recommend going out on rough seas but go for it if it’s a calm day.

Make sure you spend some time in one of the pubs. Our two favorites were Gus O’Connor’s and Fitzpatrick’s.

Even if you don’t make a trip to the Aran Islands, you can take a Cliff tour by boat through the Doolin Ferries as well. Check out the picture below from a close-up at the bottom of the Cliffs.

Click here for more of the virtual tour.