Sunday, June 6, 2010

Ireland Vacation

We just got back from a week-long vacation in Ireland. We had a wonderful time. The only thing we planned before we went was some key things we'd like to do, the first and last night hotel stay, and we booked a rental car. Other than that we thought we'd take it day by day to see how our baby would do.

Finding a B&B or Farmhouse was super easy. Ireland has lots of them! We stayed two nights at a B&B, one night at a Farmhouse, and three nights in a hotel. We had a crib every place we stayed. We also enjoyed a nice Irish breakfast every morning.  Ireland B&B's and Farmhouses typically have a sign outside their door that says "vacancies" or "no vacancies."  When we saw one we thought we might like, we'd stop and look at their available rooms and ask if they had a cot (crib).  We actually turned down several because they didn't have a crib or we did not like the room set-up.  We enjoyed an Irish breakfast every morning.  A typical Irish breakfast includes eggs, porridge (oatmeal), meat, fruit, bread, coffee, tea, and juice.  The bread we ate in Ireland was some of the best bread we've ever had.

Here is a brief overview of our vacation.

Day 1 - Arrived in Dublin

Our plane landed really late in Dublin last Wednesday. We picked up our rental car and headed to the hotel.  My husband drove as the Irish drive on the left.  I was really impressed with his ability to drive a standard left handed and on the left side of the road.  Honestly, I was a little worried about our safety before we left for this trip.

Day 2 - The Rock of Cashel and the Blarney Castle

Day one we visited the The Rock of Cashel and saw Cormac's Chapel. After lunch we drove to Blarney Castle and saw the Blarney Stone - neither of us kissed it for sanitary reasons. Both castles were quite impressive. My favorite was the Blarney Castle. The grounds were beautiful too and there was a nice grassy area that we were able to let our son play on.
 The Rock of Cashel
Inside the Rock of Cashel
The Blarney Castle
Someone kissing the Blarney Stone - to kiss the stone you have to get on your back and lean your head off the ledge, it looked pretty scary
View from the top of the Blarney Castle
Day 3 - Ring of Kerry and Dingle

The next day we took a scenic drive and drove part of the Ring of Kerry. Just so you know, most of Ireland is scenic.  Everywhere we went people suggested a scenic drive which was usually an hour or more out of the way.  Some drives are worth it but if you plan on driving to the coast you will experience plenty of wonderful scenery.  We stopped in Dingle and spent the night there after visiting the Gallarus Oratory, a stone church which some believe was built between the 6th and 9th century.
 Gallarus Oratory
Day 4 - Dingle Peninsula and Kildare

We drove the Dingle Peninsula (beautiful!) and stopped at the Beehive Huts. After spending some time around there and admiring the beautiful coast we continued on. Our baby was tired and fell asleep so we decided to take advantage of this and start making our way back toward the east coast.  We ate lunch at a Pub and spent the night in Kildare at Castle View Farmhouse B&B.
 Beehive Huts
Scary little one lane road with traffic going both ways
Day 5 - Wicklow Mountains, Glendalough, Powers Court, and Bray Head

Today we drove the through the Wicklow Mountains to the coastal town of Bray.  On our drive we saw where scenes of several famous movies were filmed such as Braveheart and PS I Love You. We stopped in Glendalough, walked around, saw the monuments: Round Tower, Church, and Cemetery, and then drove to Powers Court, the home of the most beautiful gardens in Ireland. We had a wonderful lunch at Powers Court and spent a few hours in the gardens.  After Powers Court we drove to Bray Head, a touristy beach town.  
 Powers Court
Bray Head Beach
Day 6 - Day in Dublin

We decided to spend our last full day in Dublin. We ate a nice Irish lunch and walked across the Ha'Penny Bridge. We visited some nice bookstores, bought some books in British English, and went to Trinity College. My husband saw the amazing library and Book of Kells. I decided not to go in but to stay with our baby and let him play.  We ended our last night in Ireland with a very fancy dinner. I wish I had my camera. The food was not only delicious but very artistic too.
 Famous Ha'Penny Bridge
Trinity College
Day 7 - Back to Germany

We went to the airport early this morning and flew back to Germany. We had a great vacation! The Irish people are friendly and the country is beautiful. We'd love to go back some day.  
We have been to over 15 countries in Europe and Ireland is by far one of the easiest European countries to get around in.  The Irish also love children so if you can only take your kids to one European country you might want to consider taking them to Ireland.


  1. I entered this site by chance, but I found very interesting. A greeting to all the people who visit this page.

  2. Wow! look at that scenery.Stunning.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...