Tuesday 21 October 2014

Wild Atlantic Way

Just back from a weeks holiday driving around the Irish coast following the Wild Atlantic Way with cousins from Chicago! Last weeks posts were scheduled so I have some catching up to do replying to comments and following up on the blog posts that I have missed.

We didn't buy much, the obligatory distillers reserve Whiskey at Bushmills for Gordon (no photos allowed there!)  And I've been wanting a tea cosy for our stainless steel teapot for a while (since I saw Yvonne @ Quilting Jet Girl make her own).  I couldn't resist this fox by The Ulster Weaver's as it reminded us of how Charly our Jack Russell curls up to sleep!  Oh there was a stop at Ikea where I bought a whole bolt of fabric but that's for another day!  Google maps says you can do our route in 16 hours - we took a good few days to wander around and enjoy the scenery. 
We were blessed with good weather!  Above Cliffs of Moher with O'Briens tower.  There is a lovely walk along the top of the cliffs and we are planning on going back to do more!
Poulnabrone Dolmen (megalithic burial site - older than Newgrange, Stonehenge and the Great Pyramids!)

Croagh Patrick in Wesport, where we made our base to explore Achill Island and down into Connemara.
No chance of an indulgence from the Pope for climbing it in October!
(Gordon says he is keeping the beard for Christmas - fingers crossed it's gone by January!)
Great Famine memorial.  An amazing piece of work showing the ships that carried a mass emigration from the west in the 1840's to the UK, USA and across the world.  In school we called these coffin ships.

Kylemore Abbey in Connemara, Galway.  Originally a castle built by Mitchell Henry, then a boarding school and now an Abbey with an open house and gardens.  Even in October, flowers blooming and some creative pieces along the walks - gotta love these sheep!
Gothic church built by Mitchell Henry in memory of his wife Margaret.  Instead of the scary Gothic gargoyles this church is a labour of love decorated with flowers and angels using local Connemara marble inside. 

Our last destination on the trip was the Giant's Causeway in Co. Antrim right at the top of Northern Ireland. This was amazing!

My version of a selfie, shadow on those hexagon rocks!  Legend has it that the Giant living in the causeway challenged a Giant across the way in Scotland and the causeway was built so they could meet and fight.  The Scottish giant was huge so the Irish giant pretended to be a baby in a cradle.  The Scottish giant figured if that is the size of the baby he didn't want to see the father and broke up the causeway on his way home to separate the two again.  Volcanic activity  and crystalline cooling is the actuality but I like the story better! 
One of the iconic images of Northern Ireland is the Carrick-a-Rede rope bridge.  Now I don't have a photo of the bridge except for this because I was holding on with both hands crossing it!  Some people stopped to take Selfies, not me!  I got across by looking at one spot and keeping going - totally ignoring the drop to the Atlantic, the gusting wind and the swinging bridge - thankfully it is a short enough bridge and much easier to do on the way back! 

So that was the Wild Atlantic Way heading North from Limerick.  Normal quilty updates will resume later this week.  For now I'll leave you with this scenic shot while I test out Mr. Fox's ability to keep my tea warm and cozy!


  1. Looks like you had a great trip, and you definitely got fabulous weather. I did an almost identical trip about 10 years ago when I had a friend visiting, also from Chicago, and it was wonderful although I didn't come home with anything as adorable as your tea cosy. I still have such great memories of that trip. Like you we did it over several days. We also managed to get in the south coast as well as a second half to the trip. My family goes caravanning in Ballylickey (just outside Bantry) every year so we travelled there from Dublin, and spent a few days before working our way back to Ennis at the end.

  2. Great photos. It looks like it was a great trip.

  3. I really love your fox tea cozy - much fancier than what I made for my own tea pot! :) The Giant's Causeway is somewhere my husband and I would love to visit / see one day. That is a very cool geologic formation. The rope sheep are darling, and I like the story behind the cathedral and that it has flowers instead of gargoyles. Sounds like a lovely break, and welcome home!

  4. Oh wow! Looks and sounds like you had an amazing time. Thanks for sharing with us.

  5. Hi Ruth! Wow your photos are fantastic! What amazing places you have visited! Those rope-lams are fun and the tea cosy really cute! x Teje
    Ps. My hb had also beard in spring but it made him look much older and now it's gone but it was fun for a while.

  6. Great round trip in Ireland!! You know, I imagined that dolmen was huge from the guide book. Surprisingly small in real...

  7. I love your tea cozy! Lovely photos, looks like a great trip, I'd love to go the Giant's Causeway. I also think you're very brave for crossing that bridge, I don't know how anyone could stop to take a selfie on one!

  8. Thanks for sharing Ireland with us. I've seen the southern part and it was lovely to blog visit Northern Ireland. Always nice to have a memento of your holiday and Mr Fox will always be there for that.

  9. What a fab pics! Beautiful! Plus I love that fox :)

  10. Those pictures are stunning! Love that palace on the water ... looks photoshopped like it's too good to be true. Glad to have you back :)

  11. Beautiful scenery! Thank you for sharing. I would love to visit Ireland one day. Such a long way from Australia!


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