Landing in Dublin
, we jumped in a rental car and hit the road (the wrong side of the road, with a left hand manual shift). Our first destination was Cork
. Here we stayed in a B&B. We visited a couple of castles near the city and a fort on the shore of Kinsale. Far more interesting that the 50 - 100 year old buildings we have in the Chicago area. This is where my family name is from but too many generations removed to meet anyone we knew. After 2 nights in Cork we drove toward Galway
. On the way we stopped at the Cliffs of Moher. This is incredibly scenic, 650' vertical cliffs looking over the Atlantic. Our 3rd & 4th nights, we stayed in the Ballynihinch Castle Hotel. A magnificent building, our favorite overnight, that offered huge suites and a pub with lots of beer. This castle is located 1 hour west of Galway in the Connemara area (very beautiful country). We saw a traditional Irish show in Galway, music, singing and dancing with world class entertainment. Then on to Dublin for the last 4 nights. I still can't comprehend the number of pubs in this city. Toured the Guinness factory, Jameson Whiskey factory, watched an awesome Cirque du Soleil. The Temple bar area was filled with pubs, shops, pubs, restaurants, pubs, and uh, pubs. Dublin is where my daughter joined the tatoo club. I found the castles to be some of the most interesting visits of this trip (about 7). Of course, the pubs weren't so bad either.